Molan denies her ethnic accents 'racist'

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Sports broadcaster Erin Molan has denied her many attempts of various ethnic groups' accents are forms of "ugly racial stereotypes" after several tapes were played in court.

The rugby league commentator is suing the Daily Mail Australia over one article and two tweets in June 2020 that refer to her saying "hooka looka mooka hooka fooka" on air in May 2020.

Molan, 39, maintains she was not mocking Polynesian names, deliberately mispronouncing them for a laugh, or speaking in an accent when she was referring to a well-known story already heard on The Continuous Call Team radio program.

The 2GB rugby league show co-host was making light of Ray and Chris Warren mixing up the end of players' names and she was "poking fun of her colleagues," she told the Federal Court on Tuesday.

The original story was about Manly forward Haumole Olakau'atu, with Crown Sports Management later saying she had upset a lot of people including him, the court was told.

"They were offended by the reporting ... not what I had done," Molan said.

The Daily Mail's barrister Bruce McClintock SC played more than a dozen studio tapes. One he said showed "a despicable act of casual racism," in imitating a Chinese prostitute.

She is heard saying "I wuv you very long time, very handsome man," changing her syllables to mock a Chinese accent, he said.

But the 2DayFM presenter said she was using a well-known line from a movie, and that she and her co-hosts were the butt of all such self-deprecating humour.

"Just assume there was a Chinese woman in the room with you ... would you have said that in front of her?" Mr McClintock said.

"It would depend on the context," Molan said.

Accents had been played "from all around the world" and the highly rated program had tens of thousands of international listeners, and in five years she had never received one complaint, Molan said.

"The fact that someone doesn't complain about a racist remark doesn't make it any less wrong does it?" Mr McClintock said.

"No," Molan said.

The barrister said it was essentially a way of saying "you're not like us, you speak in a funny way," a method of excluding and humiliating people from different racial groups.

The online news website is arguing a truth defence to her case.

Earlier she tearfully recalled the barrage of abuse she received following the Daily Mail's reports, which included death threats to herself and her daughter.

She feared "the multiple threats of physical violence," including from a convicted criminal, and worried that people would berate her on the street.

Molan said two specific aspects of the online story were "heartbreaking" and neither fair, nor true.

"If the Daily Mail had reported accurately ... what I'd done ... I'd cop that every day of the week," she said.

The headline of the June 5 article stated that she had refused to apologise for the "inside-joke," words she had never said.

She had apologised on-air and again on social media.

But McClintock submitted her apology was not genuine, saying words such as "I would never intentionally offend or hurt anyone's feelings," was not regarding the content of what she said.

Her lawyer Kieran Smark SC previously told the court the content implied she was "an arrogant woman of white privilege," with her conduct so offensive she had been "slammed," by Pacific Islander women, among other defamatory imputations.

"The Daily Mail took something that perhaps was silly, perhaps was frivolous ... and turned it into something which was sinister and immensely damaging to (her) reputation," Mr Smark said.

The court earlier heard how Daily Mail Australia editor Barclay Crawford emailed a journalist instructing "Let's rip into this Sheila," Mr Smark said.

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