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Nary a day goes by when Em Rusciano isn't finding herself plastered across the media.

Ever since she sipped from the poisoned chalice left behind by King Kyle (Sandilands), the beleaguered radio presenter has variously found herself the subject of tabloid attacks, thoughtful think pieces, cuss laden podcasts… why, she even popped up on Tom Gleeson's magnificent Hard Chat over on Aunty.

Each radio ratings survey her results are poured over with forensic detail to measure the modicum she has risen or fallen and whether her Southern Cross Austereo overlords will keep up the CPR on the chest of her show.

Em Rusciano isn't shy to speak her mind.

Photo: James Brickwood

Today NewsCorp bayed that staff were abandoning the breakfast show as a direct result of Rusciano being awful.

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At the whiff of blood radio insiders were back-grounding journalists, the milk of human kindness, before the ink was dry on the Daily Telegraph's pages.

"She won't be coming back after the July survey break," one said.

"Ash London will be replacing her," another breathlessly told any media outlet that would listen.

Austereo, as is their inclination, remained tight-lipped – all publicity is good publicity, after all.

But tomorrow morning Rusciano (and her other hosts Ed Kavalee and Grant Denyer) will be back on air and I will bargain that they will continue to do so for the forseeable future.

From the media to her co-hosts Ed Kavalee and Grant Denyer to her Austereo overlords, Em Rusciano has been offending everyone.

Photo: 2DayFM

There's a range of reasons for this, chiefly among them the fact that the show posted massive growth in the last survey, its strongest result since King Kyle and Queen Jackie abdicated their Austereo throne and, in a classic chess move, took their crowns (and their listeners) over to rival station ARN.

2DayFM in Sydney has struggled ever since and a variety of iterations of breakfast shows has followed. Sophie Monk, Rove McManus, Sam Frost and even Scary Spice have nestled their buttocks in the well-worn chairs of the breakfast studio.

But while Austereo's programming boss Gemma Fordham has swung the axe with a shrewdness that the weird sisters would peer at enviously when it comes to under-performing shows, she has been nothing but supportive of Rusciano and her revolving door of co-hosts.

For Fordham knows well that the last show to rate favourably in the breakfast timeslot was hosted by a divisive, offensive, unpleasant man.

The top-rating show in Sydney commercial radio is hosted by that same bloke.

Is Rusciano the female Kyle Sandilands.

Photo: Louie Douvis

And in Rusciano they have his female equal.

Rusciano is crass and has very little impetus to self-edit. Neither does Kyle Sandilands.

Sandilands has a reputation for being difficult to work with, for having a sizeable ego and being generally unpleasant to those around him. So does Rusciano.

For reasons psychiatrists will study in years to come Sydney radio listeners enjoy the types of people you are unlikely to invite to a dinner party and neither Sandilands nor Rusciano are likely to be on the seating plan for one of mine.

One Austereo insider, who managed to convince me that Rusciano wasn't going anywhere, made a very valid point.

"It doesn't matter how awful she is. The executives don't care, the show is gaining and it is making money," they told me.

Just help yourself to her recent podcast with Wil Anderson for evidence of her pleasantness. Rusciano spent the bulk of the 90 minute extravaganza doing her 'woe is me' routine, offending everyone from the media, through to her co-hosts and Austereo overlords.

But is she any more awful than Sandilands? Probably not.

Has she been given a rougher ride by the media? Probably.

Being Lady Macbeth is a tough gig, that 'out damned spot' monologue is brutal. Being Lady Kyle, I'd argue, is tougher. Not only do you have to endure the forensic analysis of your every word and ratings survey, you also have to go to sleep at night knowing you have made a lot of people miserable.

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Nathanael Cooper

Nathanael Cooper is Fairfax Media's deputy entertainment editor

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