Collingwood president Eddie McGuire has defended a "joke" about drowning The Age chief football writer Caroline Wilson, saying that they were remarks made "in the spirit of the fun of the day".
But Wilson hit back this morning, rejecting McGuire's assertion his remarks were "playful banter" and saying he "crossed the line".
McGuire was condemned on social media for saying he would pay $50,000 to see Wilson stay under a pool of iced water and charge an extra $10,000 for "everyone to stand around the outside and bomb her".
McGuire made the comments on radio station Triple M last Monday, during the "Big Freeze at the G", where celebrities slid into ice water to raise money for research into Motor Neurone Disease.
The remarks came just days before McGuire welcomed a new AFL women's team into the Collingwood fold, and during the AFL's "White Ribbon" round, which is aimed at preventing violence against women.
North Melbourne president and Triple M caller James Brayshaw was also involved in the live broadcast.
Speaking again on Triple M's Hot Breakfast on Monday morning, McGuire had a clear message.
"Anything at all that can be perceived to promulgate or support, even in a lighthearted manner, any form of domestic violence against women is unacceptable," he said.
However, he defended his intentions behind the remarks: "It was all done in the spirit of the fun of the day and seeing who would be next going down the slide."
Having said that, he conceded that what he said was "totally unacceptable if it in any way condones violence against women".
Speaking for the first time on 3AW radio about the remarks, Wilson rejected claims the gibe was "just playful banter".
The Walkley award-winning journalist first found out about the on-air conversation from a friend.
"I ran it past a lot of people who assured me it sounded a lot better when you heard the spoken word than read it," she said.
So she did listen to it. And she did not agree with their assessment.
"He crossed the line," she said.
Wilson saw McGuire at the Hall of Fame function and at the launch of the women's league during the week and felt "uncomfortable being around him".
"I didn't go and talk to him," she said.
"Often, we have jousted in the past many times and on this one, I do think he probably crossed the line and I didn't like the language and I think it's such a pity they need to default to that vicious language and I don't accept that it was playful banter."
"It's like casual racism.
"Casual violent language might be meant as a joke but I really thought, I wonder how many times do we have to draw this line in the sand between what is a joke and what is completely unacceptable."
Meanwhile, 3AW journalist Peter Ford reported that AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan had issued McGuire an ultimatum: apologise to Wilson or resign.
McGuire dismissed these reports. "Not true. So far from the case," he told Triple M.
Former St Kilda captain Danny Frawley also went on the Hot Breakfast program on Monday morning with a clear intention to apologise. He said he had also tried to ring Wilson to apologise.
"I want to sincerely apologise for my comments that happened last Monday.
"They were inappropriate, they were unacceptable, and any comments that translate into or are seen as being violence against women are totally inappropriate."
He said he spoke to his three daughters and mother about the remarks on Sunday and that "a lot of people had been affected, no more than Caroline Wilson".
He admitted that when he listened in isolation to the conversation: "It's not great".
"It's not good enough, I take full responsibility," Frawley said.
Wilson also told 3AW radio she believed she was attacked by McGuire because she wrote a recent opinion piece about a succession plan at Collingwood.
"It was after a loss to Carlton, and Eddie said he considered resigning but his boys talked him out of it, and I said I didn't really believe that he thought about resigning but perhaps it was time, not that he stepped down now, but think about who was going to lead Collingwood next," Wilson said.
"All good organisations have to think about what's coming after them, and at the moment there is no obvious successor."
Clearly, McGuire was unhappy with her column, she said, feeling that she had "burnt him".
"I think it's a real pity because I would hope that any journo, whether they be male or female, can write without fear or favour and not get that sort of stuff in return," she said.
"To be honest I think he gets away with a lot because people are scared of him.
"His board didn't stand up to him over the Adam Goodes business, the AFL didn't stand up to him over equalisation...
"It just keeps happening because he has such power and I think because I occasionally take him to task and challenge him he doesn't like it."
McGuire's comments about Wilson being a black widow, she believes, stem from Wilson seeing McGuire out on social occasions but him believing that she then she can't "stick my neck out and be critical of him".
Wilson wants an apology from McGuire.
Magpies premiership captain and former coach Tony Shaw also spoke on 3AW about a separate on-air conversation that Wilson was a part of in which commentators joked that many would like to push Wilson in a pool of ice water and "hold her under".
Crying, an emotional Shaw said he did not believe he did anything wrong.
"I'm pretty emotional about this one," he said.
"You build up a reputation and just a little thing like this ... I don't think I did anything wrong."
'It lacks guts': AFL slammed for Caroline Wilson response
The AFL has been slammed for its response to controversial comments from Collingwood president Eddie McGuire, who suggested that one of the most senior football writers in Australia should be drowned in an ice pool.
The extraordinary remarks, made live on air on Triple M last week, centred on The Age's chief football writer Caroline Wilson.
To the laughter of co-hosts, McGuire suggested that she should be dunked in the pool and that he would pay $50,000 were she to "stay under". Others then joined in to back up McGuire in an exchange that can be read in full below.
In a media release issued late on Sunday, AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan said McGuire, North Melbourne president James Brayshaw and former St Kilda captain Danny Frawley's remarks "although seeking to be lighthearted ... could be seen to be supporting violent attitudes".
Speaking on Triple M's The Rub, McGuire said he would pay $50,000 to see Wilson stay under a pool of iced water and charge an extra $10,000 for "everyone to stand around the outside and bomb her".
Frawley, also an ex-Richmond coach, chimed in by saying Wilson should be held under the freezing water, adding: "I'll actually jump in and make sure she doesn't [come up] ... I'll hold her under, Ed."
Mr McLachlan said he contacted McGuire, Frawley and Brayshaw, on Sunday.
"The AFL expressed the strong view ... that although seeking to be light-hearted, the language and tenor of the wording could be seen to be supporting violent attitudes or actions against women, and was therefore clearly not appropriate," he said.
"All parties have told [the] AFL this evening they will address their comments within the next 24 hours."
However, not all on social media agreed the league had taken a strong enough stance.
One tweeter compared it to being flayed with soggy lettuce, while another said it was a "missed opportunity" to lead in speaking out on violence against women.
Frawley apologised for his "insensitive, inappropriate" comments on Sunday evening.
Speaking on Fox Footy's Bounce, he passed them off as a "poor attempt at humour".
"Last Monday, on radio, I made a couple of insensitive, inappropriate remarks about Caroline Wilson," he said.
"Clearly it was a poor attempt at humour, which I sincerely apologise [for], so we'll just leave it at that.
"As I said, it was a poor attempt at humour and it didn't go down that way."
The segment was part of Triple M's coverage of the Big Freeze at the MCG on the Queen's Birthday public holiday, which raised more than $2 million for motor neurone disease research and awareness.
Triple M had crossed to McGuire as he prepared to enter the pool of iced water during their Big Freeze coverage when he went on a diatribe about Wilson.
"In fact, I reckon we should start the campaign for a one-person slide next year - Caroline Wilson," McGuire said.
"And I'll put in 10 grand straight away, make it 20. And if she stays under, 50. What do you reckon guys?"
McGuire is frequently in hot water over his comments, most famously for ones about former AFL great Adam Goodes.
Days after the Swans champion was called an ape by a young girl, McGuire said on air that the producers of King Kong should use the footballer to promote the musical.
McGuire declined to comment when contacted by Fairfax Media on Sunday.
The comments have surfaced on the same weekend as the AFL held a White Ribbon fixture aimed at raising awareness of domestic violence and violence against women.
McGuire: In fact I reckon we should start the campaign for a one-person slide next year. Caroline Wilson. And I'll put in 10 grand straight away - make it 20. [laughter] And if she stays under, 50. [laughter]
What do you reckon guys? Who else is up there? I know you're in JB?
James Brayshaw: No, yep, Straight in.
Danny Frawley: I'll be in amongst it Ed.
McGuire: Is Duck there?
Wayne Carey: Yes, I'm here mate.
McGuire: Duck's in. Danny's in - already spoken up.
Frawley: Yeah I'm in Ed.
McGuire: I could do an auction here today.
Frawley: I'll actually jump in and make sure she doesn't - I'll hold her under, Ed.
McGuire: I reckon we could charge 10,000 for everyone to stand around the outside and bomb her.
Damien Barrett: I'm on Caro's side now, Ed. I'm on Caro's side these days, Ed.
McGuire: She'll burn you like everyone else, mate. She's like the black widow. She just sucks you in and gets you and you start talking to her and then bang! She gets you.
Brayshaw: If you ran that auction from down there, I reckon you'd start grabbing some bids out of the seats too. There'd be money piling in everywhere
McGuire: It's be magnificent. I think we should do that next year. It's all good for footy.
Brayshaw: Bloody oath.
With Deborah Gough