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Increase pressure on Julia to downsize Murdoch press in Australia and world

We are republishing this message because we agree that nothing can go ahead as long as the public messaging system is held hostage by a corporate media monopoly.
Avaaz organisation says that, "Prime Minister Gillard may finally be about to order an inquiry into Rupert Murdoch's stranglehold on our media, but insiders say she is wobbling under direct pressure from Murdoch's lobbyists. Let’s flood her cabinet members with calls today and give them the public mandate they need to take a strong stand and hold the PM steady in her decision." See also "Concentrated media ownership: a crisis for democracy" Remember, the Murdoch press wants our population to increase and is against protection of the environment and of workers' rights. does not know how true this view of Gillard is, but we certainly agree with the sentiment. It is true that Murdoch media sure does not act like a friend to Julia, so, if she knows what is good for her, she will increase Australia's media diversity and downsize the Murdoch press. But she may also rely on 'friends' of the Murdoch media - which means nearly every 'successful' mediocre politician around. They will stand in her way by protecting the Murdoch press. The extremely weak response to the recent Murdoch scandal by Australian politicians and parliament is indicative of how bad the situation is. Is there no politician left who does not kowtow to Rupert?

Avaaz suggests that you "Take a moment and call these numbers now -- the talking points below will help guide you in what to say:

Kate Ellis: (02) 6277 7630
Tanya Plibersek: (02) 6277 7200
Anthony Albanese: (02) 6277 7680"

And, how about signing this petition which has been going now for several weeks, as well? (Image: Rupert Murdoch, courtesy Rex Interstock) Sign this online petition advocating a comprehensive Inquiry into the Australian media industry. #AusPol 1 day ago

Talking points

I believe that there should be a robust inquiry into Australia’s media because current regulation doesn’t protect media diversity and News Limited controls 70% of what Australians read in the news every day.
I encourage you to firmly remind the Prime Minister that she has an overwhelming public mandate to call for this inquiry -- thousands of Australians have called on her to bring this inquiry.
I believe we need a “fit and proper person” or public interest test to determine if media acquisitions are in the interest of our society.
Australia needs a balanced privacy law that protects people from invasive and ruthless journalism without stifling free speech or public interest reporting.
The concentration of media power in just a few hands undermines the heart of a democratic society -- the ability of people to access a variety of viewpoints and form their own opinions.

Remember to be polite: we’ll be far more convincing if we are reasonable and courteous. After the call share your experience with others across the country in the live chat on the right.

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The fundamental concern within the behavior of our privatised, autocratic mass media is its power to dominantly influence the social conversation and, concomitantly, its conscious intent to use this power to misinform and misdirect the social conversation toward belief and action that benefits undemocratic, narrowly beneficial agendas.

This is not a free press. It is a private propaganda machine masquerading as a free press. Two primary aspects within it can and should be addressed.

'News' reporting must be subjected to sound standards regarding the reliable inclusion of all reasonably available fact, and balance of fact, pertinent to the matter being reported. Any entity has the right to publish opinion, satire and rhetoric constructed upon a select range of facts, but these forms should not be presented as or within 'News' reporting. When they are, readers should have effective recourse to compensation for the product fraud being broadly committed upon them.

We do not tolerate being supplied with rat poison when purchasing peanuts. Why tolerate twisted logic based upon consciously edited half-truths when we purchase news reporting. The impact of this flawed product is not limited to just the discomfort of its consumption. It also distorts and disables the conversations we must then engage with and suffer throughout the day.

Clear, measurable and un-contentious standards exist for objective journalism. Why not demand that commercial news reporting maintain such standards? Publishers can go for broke within opinion and magazine sections, however news reporting has a public interest obligation that transcends the proprietor's sole rights. Without primary access to a sound body of the basic available facts of a matter, how can there be any meaningful social conversation and thence any democratically useful public opinion?

The other factor is distribution and location of media ownership. Ideally communities of interest should own their own newspapers. A lot of obstacles impede this, not least the yawning complacency and apathy of a consumer mentality that has been steadily geared toward immediate convenience over the pursuit of genuine satisfaction. Getting people to subscribe to their own long term interests is not easy. However that doesn't make the goal any less of an imperative.

Some further thought on this matter on Geoff Davies' web site at:

Hi Greg,
I feel that I should acknowledge on behalf of Admin the borrowing of your elegant term for the media, "the public messaging system" here. Thanks for your comment.