Georgie Purcell: Australian MP says Nine News edited her body and outfit

Georgie Purcell outside Victorian Parliament

An Australian MP has accused a media outlet of doctoring an image to enlarge her breasts and expose her midriff.

A photo of Georgie Purcell appeared in a Nine News Melbourne bulletin on Monday after she criticised a Victorian government decision to allow duck hunting to continue in the state.

On social media, Ms Purcell posted the original photo and said her outfit had been edited to be “more revealing”.

Nine News apologised and claimed “automation by Photoshop” was to blame.

Ms Purcell – who has sat in the Victorian Legislative Council since 2022 – is the youngest woman in the state’s parliament and has frequently called out the treatment of women in Australian politics.

In a statement, she said politicians often had “catastrophic” days at work, but Monday was “the worst I’ve had so far”.

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End of twitter post by Georgie Purcell

“Hot tip Nine, I’ve got my whole stomach tattooed,” she added.

Responding to the incident, Director of Nine News Melbourne “sincerely” and “unreservedly” apologised to Ms Purcell for the “graphic error”.

“As is common practice, the image was resized… during that process, the automation by Photoshop created an image that was not consistent with the original,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.

“This did not meet the high editorial standards we have.”

Ms Purcell – who has spoken about working as a stripper to support herself through law school – has previously made headlines for wearing an outfit covered in sexist abuse that she says she regularly received online to parliament.

Her post about the graphic has sparked a backlash against Nine News.

Victorian Premier Jacinta Allan – who herself made headlines last year after she was depicted naked in a newspaper cartoon by another outlet – was among those who called out Nine’s actions.

“That’s no way to represent any woman, let alone a woman who holds a position in public office,” she told reporters at a press conference.

Australian politics more broadly has in recent years been grappling with what women say is a prevailing sexist culture.

A landmark report in 2021 – triggered by an alleged rape inside Australia’s Parliament House – found a third of employees in federal parliament had been sexually harassed.

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