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Sunday, November 28, 2010

Media Appearances

Having been in the media several times as a donor conceived person being interviewed for a story, it is a fairly common occurrence that there is something that I dislike about the story that can often give people the wrong impression about me or the subject matter. Actually it happens more often than not and there would probably only have been 3 articles that I have been interviewed for that have come across in a manner that I have liked. The wrong impressions and misinformation is also evident in the comments that people leave on-line. While there will always be people of different views and I respect that, it is just when a statement is made based on naivety that it really bugs me. Additionally, many of these stories just fuel their fears by spreading untruths.
For example a recent article had numerous responses saying that people are concerned that the offspring would come after the donor for money/estate. Well here in South Australia that cannot happen as they are protected by legislation from that ever occurring. Nor do I know of any adult offspring that have ever said that that is an issue for them, nor have I ever seen any offspring quoted as saying that that is what they want. It just doesn’t happen. Secondly they make comments that if anonymity is removed that the donor numbers will drop. Again, here in Australia the NHMRC guidelines which clinics supposedly abide by state that all donors now must be known, so again we have another misconception because that factor is already in effect.
I have since stopped trying to comment on stories that I appear in as I feel that it does little good in those instances. What I would like to see is that journalists report more accurately and stop feeding misinformation. Perhaps I might need to have a clause before giving an interview that a couple of things are included which set some of the record straight.

What is interesting and strange is that the story can appear quite differently in each of the syndicated papers.
Recent examples (same reporter, same date, slightly different content):
“The dilemma of the D-Generation”
“Donor children seeking identity”
“Donor kids crave genetic identity”
Of which the Courier Mail one is in my opinion the better one.

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