Even in a new age of freedom of information, censorship is still a very real and worrying concern for Australian media.
Why? For starters lets look at the media conglomerates of Australia. In American there are 6 major players in the mass media game, in Australia there are just two: News Corp and Fairfax Media. News Corp owns a newspaper in every capital city of Australia – The Daily Telegraph, The Australian, Foxtel (25%), MySpace (5%) and even the Donna Hay magazine my Mum likes to read. Fairfax Media has it’s hands in every pie – The Sun Herald, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Vine, Domain, Drive, RSVP, and the Australian Financial Review… Just to name a few.
Consider this: these two conglomerates provide us with our main source of news and information, they control what goes on the front page, what the most important stories are and even where the advertisements that fund the distribution of the information go. These outlets of information influence our everyday lifestyle and most importantly our opinions. When trying to inform a nation of about 22,991,428 people, this is pretty scary.
Now let’s look at who are the big names in this industry: Rupert Murdoch, Kerry Stokes, Bruce Gordon. These guys are the faces behind the media monoliths and their representations and values believe it or not DO affect what is broadcasted to us; the wider audience. Unfortunately, in Australia, we’ve become accustomed to accepting what is spoon fed to us by our newspapers and have become lazy in questioning the man.
One simply has to look for facts and figures regarding Gina Rinehart’s (who owns 142.7 million shares in Channel 10) earnings, holdings, interests, agendas (or lack their of) to know that something is most definitely up with our media today.