For the record, an open letter to Channel 9 News:
Dear Channel 9,
Re: Cook’s Cottage spray-painted again
We received a message through our Facebook page on February 6 asking for "our side of the story" regarding graffiti on Captain Cook's cottage. It was written in such a way that it was difficult to take seriously. We have pasted it below.
Later that day, we received a more professional message. At that late stage, we determined we had nothing to contribute, even if the contact was genuine. We don't know anything about the graffiti other than what we saw on the news.
We have made no statements or offered any indication that we took responsibility for the action. We are capable of spelling the word "thief" if necessary. Inclusion of our building at 62 St Georges Rd in Northcote in the footage is likely to give your viewers a false impression. We have already received messages (example) indicating that some of your viewers think we conducted the action based on your news item.
We understand that we gave no statement, but we also did not expect silence to be taken as confirmation of responsibility, especially based on the available evidence. As you might imagine, we are a small group ill equipped at responding in a way that your news cycle might demand.
The Melbourne Anarchist Club would appreciate it if you amended the news item to reflect the fact that people claiming to be anarchists have said on the Internet that they wrote the graffiti. The Melbourne Anarchist Club has not claimed or suggested it has claimed responsibility for writing the accurate statement on Captain Cook's cottage. It seems to us that removing footage of our building would be the easiest way of communicating this.
Frankly, there was some debate in the club that Channel 9 news was capable of accurately reporting this news and this contributed to our silence. If you could provide 6 good examples of your accurate or balanced reporting around political action by non-parliamentary groups from the last 3 years, that might go a long way to persuading our group to quickly respond to poorly constructed Facebook messages in the future. We were unable to find a single example of such reporting in our brief search.
–The Melbourne Anarchist Club.