Prank call crisis engulfs radio station

Southern Cross Austereo is to hold an emergency board meeting to consider what action to take over the royal prank call crisis engulfing its Sydney radio station 2Day FM.

Chairman Max Moore-Wilton said the board would meet on Sunday afternoon.

Austereo suspended all advertising on 2Day FM on Saturday in response to an advertiser boycott following the suspected suicide of a British nurse involved in a prank call.

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The chairman of King Edward VII's Hospital, Lord Glenarthur, has written to Mr Moore-Wilton deploring the hoax call, which sought information about the condition of Prince William's pregnant wife, Kate.

Lord Glenarthur urged Mr Moore-Wilton to take steps to ensure that the "truly appalling" broadcast of the hoax call "could never be repeated".

"We're considering that letter and I'll be responding to them after I discuss it with my board colleagues later today," Mr Moore-Wilton said.

Asked whether he would take action to make sure that the hoax tragedy could not recur, Mr Moore-Wilton said: "We're considering our position and our board is meeting later today and I've got really no comment until I have a discussion with my board colleagues."

A former senior public servant, Mr Moore-Wilton has been chairman of Southern Cross Austereo, for which he is paid $250,000 a year, since 2007.

In that time, Austereo has been beset by on-air scandals, including multiple episodes involving shock jock Kyle Sandilands.

"We have taken action previously, but as I say, the chief executive officer is responsible for the operations of the organisation within the framework that the board broadly sets," Mr Moore-Wilton said.

"This is one part of our business, it's not all of our business, and it's one station in 80 stations."

smh.com.au

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