Music

Ex-Triple J Presenters Are Getting On Board The Campaign To #ChangeTheDate

"The last Saturday in January works just as well."

Hottest 100

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Former triple j presenters Matt Okine and Kyran Wheatley have joined calls for the station to change the date of the Hottest 100.

The country’s highest-profile music countdown takes place each year on the January 26 public holiday — i.e. Australia Day. It’s a programming decision that’s caused considerable controversy in recent years, as a growing number of listeners have asked triple j not to celebrate what’s considered a day of mourning for Indigenous Australians.

The debate hasn’t fallen on deaf ears — triple j yesterday launched a new survey asking listeners whether they think the Hottest 100 should be moved to a more inclusive date, something their ex-staff are getting behind.

Former breakfast host Matt Okine appeared on the ABC this morning to throw his support behind the #changethedate campaign.

“I will vote to change the date, yep, absolutely,” he told ABC News Breakfast. “The last Saturday in January works just as well. I mean, the only people who are going to miss out are people playing Saturday sports, and a few people who have to work on Saturdays.

“But there’s always going to be someone who misses out, and I’d prefer it for it not to be Indigenous Australians to feel disenfranchised by something that’s supposed to be all inclusive.”

Former weekend breakfast presenter Kyran Wheatley has also spoken out about the date change:

 

triple j’s survey is anonymous, and takes two minutes to fill out. The broadcaster say they will announce the outcome of the survey “in the coming months”.

A widespread campaign to change the date of the Hottest 100 circulated last year, but triple j announced the countdown wouldn’t be rescheduled — at least not in 2017. “We’ve been aware of, and have been a part of, the discussions around 26 January for some time,” they said in a statement. “triple j is heavily involved in the growing dialogue around Indigenous recognition and perspectives on 26 January. This is really important to us.

“We will continue to talk to Indigenous communities, artists and our audience about the date for the Hottest 100 in future years. In short: it’s under review.”

A.B. Original’s track ‘January 26’ — which tackled issues of racism and ignorance around the controversial date — reached number 16 in the 2017 poll.