Leonardo Puglisi is no ordinary Gen Z teen.
Arguably Australia’s youngest journalist, he founded Channel 6 News Australia while he was in primary school (😳), and since then has interviewed a string of high-profile guests which include not one, but two prime ministers.
Now, that’s a pretty solid achievement for an experienced senior journalist, let alone a 14-year-old yet to complete high school.
The young journo, who covers politics, fact-checking and misinformation and has picked up over 34,000 Twitter followers, made waves when he joined Nine’s Today Show earlier this year and took a cheeky jab at former prime minister Scott Morrison over how he responded to Puglisi’s “tough” questions in an interview that went viral.
“I wasn’t expecting that kind of reaction from the Prime Minister himself,” Puglisi told the Today Show.
“I think we‘ve gotten push-back in interviews before from guests who don’t like the questions, but when it comes from the Prime Minister of Australia it is certainly a unique experience.
“And if he doesn’t like tough questions, or if any guest we have doesn’t like the tough questions we pose then I think that’s on them, that’s their problem.”
6 News Australia, which comprises a team of ‘young, passionate reporters dedicated to bringing you news for the digital age’ is also causing a stir with its stance on impartiality and insistence on representing all sides – which with Australia’s increasingly partisan news system makes it somewhat of a novelty.
“Our mission isn’t to “take down” the already existing mainstream media or anything like that – it’s to bring you a genuine alternative, made possible by the younger generation,” Puglisi wrote about the 6 News website.
“We’re an outlet made for the digital age – with content you won’t see anywhere else.”
Could Puglisi be the catalyst for (positive) changes in the Aussie news media?
“No matter your politics – and no matter your location – you will always find unbiased news from our reporters and uncensored views from our guests,” he said.
“It’s not just a motto, it’s a promise.”
We certainly hope so.