Hacking into the Public Sphere


Triple J’s half-hour and current affairs news show. From 5:30pm every weekday you can be sure to listen to trendy topics being debated with voices from far and wide.


Whether you access the issues discussed by Hack via the radio, Hack Live, Facebook, Twitter etc. there is no doubt that it is an incredibly influential platform that contributes to debate in the public sphere.

Triple J is specifically targeted to younger audiences as topics including technology, sex addiction and unemployment are among the issues discussed. However, Hack is an open platform meaning anyone can contribute to controversial and/or topical debates.

Topic of the Week: Sex Addiction

The Hack Live topic that raised the most questions and opinions within the public sphere this week was sex addiction. Using this as a prime example one can delve into the importance of having platforms such as Hack to allow public topical debates and cause social media uproar. The term ‘sex addiction’ caused major controversy itself as there are those who continue to discredit its’ meaning and those who state they have had experience with this ‘addiction’ or an ‘addict’ themselves. This issue was debated across a range of media platforms whether it be via MSG, Tweeting or being part of the panel on the live show, reflecting on how Hack is a media platform that reaches to a wide audience. Sexologists and psychologists, recovering ‘sex addicts’, people who had dated a ‘sex addict’ and those who did not believe in the term were all part of the panel along with Tom Tilley on Wednesday meaning diverse opinions were heard.

tom tilley
Watch – Hack Live: Sex Addiction

Hacking the Public Sphere

internet public sphere
Public Sphere of Imagination

The public sphere has shifted over time, now almost always virtual, however still powerful and useful in wide public debates. Hack uses a variable range of media platforms meaning its reach is considerably large allowing a substantial amount of people to participate within this sphere.


Twitter has become a major part of this public sphere as shows like Hack Live will incorporate Tweets to widen their public voice. However, the use of Twitter by politicians, journalists and citizens reflect on how Twitter is a platform enabling the public negotiation of political issues.

Thus media texts such as Hack are a vital part of the public sphere in Australia as they involve the public in crucial debates, give the Australian youth a voice and can influence opinions across the country.


4 thoughts on “Hacking into the Public Sphere

  1. Hey Keira,

    Well I think you nailed this on the head…

    Hack is a prominent part of my day, I nearly jumped out of my socks when I read this blog. You have used an excellent example (prominent to many listeners over Australia) that I think many people can relate with, who could possibly not know what the public sphere is and how it works. You have talked about Hack, its relation to the public sphere and unpacked it in relation to Australia. I don’t really have any tips. You have done a really great job. Thanks so much for sharing. I really look forward to reading more from you.



  2. Salut Keira!
    J’adore the catchy title of this post and I think you have made some really great points. When thinking about the public sphere my brain goes straight to social media or things like Q&A, but Hack is such a fantastic example of social discourse among youth in Australia. And the best part is, as you mentioned, although a young audience is intended people of all ages and all walks of life are encouraged to take part. It’s a fantastic domain for that well needed formation of public opinion; hopefully there will be more like it in the future.
    Thanks for a very interesting and informative read.

    Liked by 1 person

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