Scott De Buitléir quits RTÉ Pulse

Scott De Buitléir has announced his departure from RTÉ Pulse, claiming management have put undue pressure on him to provide balance ahead of the upcoming same-sex marriage referendum.

De Buitléir, who has been producing and presenting LGBT show “The Cosmo” voluntarily for the last six years for the digital station, announced his decision to leave in a blog post today, in which he said it became “close to impossible” to host an LGBT radio show while keeping in line with RTÉ’s requirement not to show bias towards either side on the issue.

The 26 year old told news website that management had suggested that he “stay silent” on the issue of same-sex marriage up until the Wednesday before the referendum, when he would host what they called a “carefully planned debate”.

Scott added: “I felt like I was being silenced, even if it was with the best of intentions. Despite trying it for a short while, I eventually couldn’t bear denying that this plan meant missing out on reporting the various events, advocates and news of the Yes campaign – the campaign fighting for the rights of those who The Cosmo was aimed at”.

He added that, on this issue, “the personal and the professional are intertwined” and he said he felt his show would become “a bit of a farce” if he were to continue hosting it while avoiding any mention of the referendum or having guests on from the LGBT groups he had already been interviewing about same-sex marriage for years now.

De Buitléir says he reached his decision today after station management reprimanded him for failing to clear an interview he did with Minister of State Aodhán Ó Ríordáin with someone in RTÉ before putting it online.

He said the interview was about Ó Ríordáin’s experience canvassing for the Yes side and the reactions he was getting and they also discussed the general election.

In a statement, Head of RTÉ 2fm Dan Healy said:

“RTÉ confirms that Scott De Buitléir has decided to leave RTÉ Pulse after six years. The Cosmo, presented by Scott De Buitléir, has been part of RTÉ Pulse’s schedule since the station launched in 2008. Scott has played some great dance music over the years. We wish him every success in the future.”

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  1. denis long says

    if this doesn’t speak volumes about scott’s gasp of democratic system. people like scott are tyrants ‘it must be his view or no view at all’. good luck with your tantrum. dumb ass

    1. Niall O'Keeffe on Facebook says

      Seriously? Personally, I’d commend him for standing by his convictions. Being forced to balance LGBT views with non-LGBT ones on an LGBT radio show is farcical to say the least. It’s a dance show with some discussion on LGBT issues – it’s not a news & current affairs programme, so there’s no reason under the broadcasting rules for such ‘balance’ to be enforced there.

      1. Inopro says

        He absolutely made the right decision. The balance issue is thorny and has ensured the no debaters’ crafty overstating won’t somebody please think of the children!? and if I were anything like Scott I’d struggle to hear effectively my personal life carved out by the nation’s equality opposers so they can keep Ireland discriminating against good, taxpaying citizens of this country. Its highly emotive and Scott obviously made the absolute right decision for him.

  2. Lenny Lovett on Facebook says

    On any political campaign all commentary must be balanced. That’s just basic common sense.

  3. Lenny Lovett on Facebook says

    He made the right decision for him. But RTE are 100% correct to enforce the balance rules. Is the Marriage Referendum the *only* issue concerning the LGBT community now? Seriously? If he was a creative presenter/producer he should have been able to come up with lots of alternative topics. Why should one side of the debate regardless of their belief have free access to the airwaves and the other not?

  4. Patrick piers says

    That statement from RTE is hilarious – they obviously never listened to his show. Scott never played dance music, he played pop and did some pretty poor interviews (he lacked a lot of confidence on radio). It’s not surprising that after 6 years of voluntary radio he wasn’t picked up by any other station as a broadcaster. Quitting over a disagreement with his boss? This sounds like he was just looking for an opportunity to leave and create some self- publicity as a result. I believe the listenership was in the 100s anyway, a 10-11pm slot on an obscure digital station wasn’t going to set off any alarm bells with the BAI anyway!

  5. Lenny Lovett on Facebook says

    I can’t comment as I never heard the show. If he gets so petulant over current affairs issues that he’s obliged to handle in a balanced fashion he has no place in any part of the media.

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