“The Herald Sun and Daily Telegraph should take serious responsibility of media ethics to report unbiasedly and objectively,” Wong wrote.

Wella Zhang wrote on the petition page: “Shame on this media and misleading message. An absolute discrimination leading message will definitely cause psychological harm or even physical bully to all People with Chinese backgrounds and kids. So upset to see this!”

Max Xie wrote: “This brainless anti-China mindset is so stupid.”

Jessica Lewis wrote: “Sick of anti-Chinese Propaganda and news media getting away with blatant scare mongering and racism.”

News Corp papers, however, aren’t the only publishers to call it the ‘China virus’. An article on BBC posted on 21 January similarly refers to the coronavirus in the same manner.

B&T reached out to News Corp for comment, with a spokesperson saying the reference to the Coronavirus as a ‘Chinese virus’ refers to it originating in China.