News October 7, 2021

‘Fear and intimidation’: Four Corners to reveal the inside story of Sony Music

‘Fear and intimidation’: Four Corners to reveal the inside story of Sony Music

The ABC’s Four Corners will screen a special investigation into the culture at Sony Music Australia on Monday, October 11.

The episode will focus on the reign of former CEO Denis Handlin and the “fear and intimidation” that “stalked the corridors for decades”, the national broadcaster said.

Former employees are breaking their silence on the episode, the ABC said, “to expose what they endured for so many years”.

“There is nothing glamorous about the picture that emerges of this music-making machine, where appalling behaviour was normalised and covered up,” publicity for Monday’s episode said.

Promo for the show features quotes from former Sony Music employees who will feature on the episode, including one who said: “I felt targeted, I felt manipulated, and I certainly felt abused. There’s only so much you can put up with.”

Another former Sony Music executive said the myth that New York HQ only recently found out about the Australian operation’s toxic culture needs to be challenged.

The ABC noted that the issue likely doesn’t end with Handlin.

“Many who worked in this toxic environment say those who allowed this to go on should also be held to account,” it said.

‘Facing the Music’ on Four Corners is reported by Grace Tobin and will screen first on the ABC at 8:30pm on Monday, 11 October.

It will then have various replays and be available online at ABC iView.

How did we get here? A timeline of ’s upheaval 

12 April: Tony Glover sacked by Sony Music Australia over allegations of inappropriate behaviour
15 June: 
Sony Music Australia under investigation by head office for harassment & bullying
21 June: Sony Music Australia and New Zealand CEO Denis Handlin to depart
22 June: 5 questions that need answering after Denis Handlin’s exit
23 June: 
Sony Music’s Pat Handlin & Mark Stebnicki stood down as work culture investigation continues
24 June: ‘It is time for change’: Denis Handlin sends note to Sony Music Australia staff
24 June: Lawyers who previously represented Titus Day in battle against Guy Sebastian could bring class action against Sony Music Australia
28 June: Inside the Australian music industry’s toxic underbelly
12 July: Law firm considering class action against Sony Music Australia inundated with responses
26 August: Everybody Knows: A five-part investigation into Australia’s toxic music industry launches
31 August: Inside the investigation that will expose Australia’s music industry
1 September: Denis Handlin speaks: ‘I would never tolerate treating women in an inappropriate manner’
24 September: Wayne Ringrow departs Sony Music Australia

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