Idiotic pranks are almost as old as radio itself, a tried and tested staple of the commercial breakfast market, replicated to exhaustion the world around.
Australia does not have a monopoly on them, though ours seem, when they go wrong, to be the most egregious.
Teenage girls tied to lie detectors and questioned about their sex lives, school students weeping when told - untruthfully - they have failed their HSC and now the death of a British nurse who was the victim of an Australian radio station prank aimed at the Duchess of Cambridge.
The line between black humour and offence is difficult to measure, perhaps necessarily so. As a culture, we wrestled with that very question when The Chaser broadcast a sketch which seemed to mock dying children. In fact, it was aimed at charities, though in the aftermath the finer detail was lost.
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