There is a short article in the Melbourne Times Weekly I found interesting. Apparently, at a planning meeting, a developer swore at a Fitzroy resident who had been making a submission against the developer’s proposal.
Such behaviour at a council meeting seems to be unusual and would be viewed by all people present as reflecting badly on the developer. The article mentions that a councillor was ‘disappointed by the developer’s behaviour.’ I also imagine that the developer would not have intended to look so out of control, and that such an outburst may damage his reputation within the industry. However, I could be completely wrong. Maybe the developer thought of it as a perfectly acceptable outburst?
There seem to be lots of taken for granted rules about how to behave in meetings, at least if you want your point of view to be taken seriously. I remember being at a meeting years ago where somebody threw a piece of fruit at another person. This was seen as so far outside expected behaviour that it was spoken about for many weeks after the event, and I still remember that part of an otherwise unmemorable meeting.
Whether or not rules about how to behave in meetings are written down, or when somebody acts outside of them are there consequences? There have been consequences for Yarra Council from this person’s outburst, they are going to pay for more council staff to be present at meetings to increase security.