Our subscription to Crikey continues to bring us delight. Their lead item this morning, for instance, reminds us of the tremendous success of the previous Minister for Enriching Kerry and Rupert, Richard Alston, in totally preventing media diversity, while claiming the exact opposite.
What was that Alston said?
You’ve got the ABC. You’ve got Pay TV. You’ve got extensive rollouts of SBS. You’ve got Internet websites galore. So there’s a plethora of new information sources out there. We ought to recognise that these sorts of changes and permutations are going to occur in the marketplace, try and facilitate them with an eye to the public interest.
- Sunday, 21 April 2002
Well, Crikey just quoted ACNielsen’s numbers on the share of Internet news and advertising as at June 2005. Fairfax has 33.3 per cent, News has 23.9, PBL has 12.9. Crikey has, let’s see, .8 per cent.
Crikey’s conclusion on the importance of the figures? “[They reveal] how “old media” totally dominates “new media” when it comes to audiences for news and information. It reveals that the existing media players have grabbed nearly all the eyeballs on the internet – the new ‘democratic medium’ which is routinely used as the justification for abolishing Australia’s cross-media regulations. It reveals that there’s actually greater concentration of ownership in the new media than in the old. And it reveals that despite the low barriers to entry, ‘new players’ (like Crikey) have had a minuscule impact on media diversity in Australia, especially in news and commentary, the sections that wield the most power and influence.”
It’s still not enough, of course. The Packers and Murdochs etc. always want more. Which is why the current Minister for Enriching James and Rupert etc wants to guarantee media diversity again. By reducing it.