Traditionally, media is meant to represent the news and facts, to inform us of what is happening in the world we live in. However, when the media is controlled by certain people, the truth can become warped depending on the person in power and their views and beliefs. The media in Australia is monopolised by a few key figures who ultimately decide what news is shared with the public. This in turn has resulted in the media holding back certain facts and not always being entirely honest or allowing their views portrayed in the media to become subjective. One of the main players in the media game is of course the infamous Rupert Murdoch.
News Corp, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch, is responsible for 59% of the sales of Australian daily newspapers, selling 17.3 million papers a week meaning News Corp is Australia’s most influential newspaper publisher. Rupert Murdoch has the power to sway the opinions of the public in his favour. It seems ridiculous that one individual should be allowed to have so much control of what is distributed into different media outlets.
To what extent does the media lose its reliability and authenticity? Biased views most often come across in political matters or relevant issues at the time. During the first week of the 2013 election half of the 80 stories published by the Daily Telegraph were slanted against the Labor party whilst none opposed the Liberals . For example, the picture below shows a bus stop billboard featuring an image which suggests that Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd had more than a business relationship. Murdoch utilised his power to influence the public and enforce his own political beliefs, even if that meant feeing people false information.
When media moguls are able to exploit their power the newspapers which we consider to be factual and honest can become unreliable and corrupted.
Having a certain group of people controlling the media results in a biased voice and unfair control of power. By having these people in charge of the content we receive we are forced to see and think what they want us to rather than always seeing the whole truth. Newspapers target their stories at particular political figures or issues in an attempt to sway a reader’s decision. The lack of diversity in the media in contemporary Australia results in certain voices going unheard as the individuals who manipulate the media become more and more powerful and influential.
The Conversation. 2013. FactCheck: does Murdoch own 70% of newspapers in Australia?. [online] Available at: https://theconversation.com/factcheck-does-murdoch-own-70-of-newspapers-in-australia-16812 [Accessed: 7 Apr 2014].
RTE.ie. 2013. Murdoch media accused of bias in election coverage. [online] Available at: http://www.rte.ie/news/2013/0827/470568-australia-election-murdoch/ [Accessed: 7 Apr 2014].