Prime minister Kevin Rudd faced off against Opposition Leader Tony Abbott in the first debate of the Federal Election 2013 campaign.
Australia could barely disguise a stifled yawn.
Very little fresh policy detail, outside of PM Rudd's promise to deliver legislation to recognise marriage equality legislation into Parliament within 100 days of being re-elected, and 'the worm' scrolling across the bottom of the screen either said Rudd Is Shit, if you were watching Channel 7, or Rudd Rocks if you were watching Channel 9. The polarisation between audiences for two TV commercial channels seettmed absurd.
Channel 7's online debate vote gave Abbott an extraordinary 18 point win.
But hold on, Channel 9 debate voters gave Rudd an 18 point win.
How boring was the debate? The only glint of Story! resulted from Rudd checking his notes, in apparent violation of debate rules, though the moderator failed to pull him up on this. Incredibly, Rudd Reads From Notes During Debate is now an international headline.
Here's the most important thing. Word clouds, lovely words clouds via Ben Harris-Roxas. Red is Abbott, Blue is Rudd.
THE FIRST DEBATE - FULL TRANSCRIPT
AUSTRALIA'S TWITTER RESPONSE IN DETAIL
DEBATE OPENING STATEMENTS