Former radio talkback host Howard Sattler, who was fired from 6PR following his inappropriate interview with former Prime Minister Julia Gillard, now stars in an online commercial for the upcoming election. Photo: youforpm.com.au
Disgraced former shock jock Howard Sattler has been cast in an advertisement which lampoons the upcoming federal election campaign.
Messages On Hold, an audio marketing company, has produced a video which aims to capture the attention of apathetic and narcissistic Australian voters by encouraging people to put themselves and their loved ones in the political spotlight and “run for PM”.
The commercial, which has all the hallmarks of a viral internet campaign, allows users to insert names of friends and family into a customised television news report which is then sent via email.
Recipients are able to view the video by linking back to the ‘‘Australia 2013 election’’ website – youforpm.com.au.
The fake news report is centred on the recipient who is a “virtual unknown” set to “turn Australia’s upcoming election campaign on its ear” and features an unconvincing endorsement by the former 6PR Drive presenter and other media personalities, including celebrity agent Max Markson.
“It all started when a listener called in to tell me about a friend of theirs. A friend they thought would make a great PM. Australia needs a leader like this. Someone with vision, someone with passion… I urge all my listeners to jump on the bandwagon,” are just some of the lines Sattler, dressed in attire emblazoned with the 6PR logo, delivered.
Messages On Hold managing director Kym Illman told Fairfax Media the advertisement was filmed prior to Sattler “having that recent hiccup” and it was published online “several days after the most recent knifing”.
“We thought ‘oh well, we’ve done it all now, so we may as well use it’. At least people know who he is. Two years ago, no one on the east coast knew who Howard Sattler was,” Perth-based Illman said when asked whether he still considered Sattler to be a credible celebrity casting.
Sattler was immediately suspended and subsequently fired from the talkback station, owned by Fairfax Media, publisher of this website, after a bizarre interview in June with the then Prime Minister Julia Gillard. During a live Q&A, Sattler interrogated her about alleged rumours concerning her private life.
Like Sattler, Messages On Hold are no strangers to controversial and questionable marketing ploys.
In 2010, the company was threatened with a lawsuit by Donald Trump after it established a website and produced a video called “Donald Trump Won’t Shut Up”. Both contained Trump’s name which was printed with his registered trademark symbol. Mr Illman has since closed the domain.
Mr Illman said his most recent video will not be altered to remove Sattler and has been tracking well, something he puts down to the “mass appeal” of the campaign.
Sattler, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2012, is glad the video is gaining popularity and notoriety on the internet.
“I just wish I was still there [at 6PR]. Everything that has happened has been a massive overreaction,” he told Fairfax Media on Wednesday evening.
The former broadcaster said he was left feeling traumatised following his swift dismissal from the airwaves.
He has recently returned home to Perth following a holiday in Bali where he was hospitalised with a severe case of food poisoning.
He plans to take legal action against his former employer later this year.