GetUp's new research into media diversity hits headlines

Published:


As former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull gives evidence today at the Senate inquiry probing the influence of the Murdoch Press, GetUp's explosive new media diversity report is making headlines.1,2,3

After 4,656 GetUp members like you chipped in, two media academics got to work exposing Australia's media crisis, its impact on our democracy — and how we can fix it.

Dubbed "the most comprehensive study of who controls our media in many years",4 a new 100-page report by Dr Benetta Brevini and Associate Professor Michael Ward lays bare Australia's media crisis. It reveals our media as more concentrated, less transparent, and less accountable than ever before, with an inordinate amount of power and influence sitting with major media corporations like the Murdoch Press.

The findings are stark — but some in Parliament will be doing everything they can to ignore them — or worse, hide the truth. Either because they benefit from a strangled media — or because they're scared of the powerful media moguls in charge.

So — our work is not done yet. With hard copies of the report landing on the desks of key Senators today, we need to ensure noone in Parliament House can ignore this media emergency any longer.

Can you send this critical report – and its recommendations – to your federal MP to ensure they fight for a stronger media?

So what did the report find? You can read Who Controls Our Media? here.
 

AUSTRALIA'S MEDIA IS IN
CRISIS

Research in our new report reveals:

The vast majority of Australia's media power sits with two media corporations – News Corp and Nine Entertainment – giving them excessive political and ideological influence.

News Corp, which is owned by the Murdoch Press, is the unchallenged dominant player in almost every media market. Their power extends into digital news, radio, and television, adding up to a dangerous amount of control.

Australia's very last controls on excessive media ownership were removed in 2017 after years of lobbying by powerful media executives.

The Code was designed to increase the economic power of major corporations like News Corp, leaving smaller media companies struggling to compete.

A systematic lack of transparency plagues our media sector, making critical information about who owns and controls the media extremely difficult to access. This makes it even harder to hold owners of media corporations to account for their actions.

  1. Our media is more concentrated than ever:
  2. Murdoch Press owns 59% of key print markets:
  3. Deregulation of media ownership has been designed to serve major media moguls:
  4. The recent News Bargaining Code will only make media concentration worse:
  5. It's extremely difficult to find out who owns and controls our media:

'Who controls our media? The impact of media concentration on our democracy', GetUp. 12 April 2021.



As the Senate inquiry into media diversity continues its examination of the influence of the Murdoch Press, we have an unmissable opportunity to push for change.

We need to fight for reform to ensure no one — not even Rupert Murdoch — can acquire this level of media power in our democracy. And it starts with your MP.

It's time our MPs act to save our media — and our democracy. Share this critical report with your local member today!

This report is just the beginning. In it, the expert authors recommend immediate actions to safeguard Australia's media and democracy. Now, it's up to us to push for them.

We need to ensure our communities — from Mackay to Melbourne — hear from a variety of voices, not just property developers and climate sceptics. We need laws that prevent media moguls like Rupert Murdoch from amassing excessive power and influence in our society. And we need a massive public investment in our journalism — in the stories that bring us together, and the news that keeps us informed.

Strong and fearless journalism is our democracy's first line of defence: it exists to serve us — the public — not to line the pockets of the rich and powerful. And our MPs need to choose sides today.

Check out the new report and help ensure our MPs have the facts — and the answers — to fight for real media reform in this country.

Let's do this.

Chandi, Oliver, Patricia, and Tosca on behalf of the GetUp team.

PS — Want to read the full report? Download it here.

PPS — As I write to you, Malcolm Turnbull is being asked questions about our report by Senators sitting on the inquiry into media diversity. It's clear this research is already making waves in Parliament, and we have to capitalise on this momentum. Send the report to your MP today!

References:
[1] 'News Corp controls nearly 60% of print media in Australia – new report', The Guardian, 12 April 2021
[2] 'Alarming News Corp ownership stats revealed as ex-PM and editors face media inquiry', The New Daily, 12 April 2021.
[3] 'Turnbull to front media diversity inquiry', 7 News, 12 April 2021.
[4] Bernard Keane Twitter, @BernardKeane 12 April 2021.
 
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PO Box A105, Sydney South, NSW, 1235, Australia Wide
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