Vital Signs. Google shouldn’t subsidise journalism, but the government could



Jeff Chiu/AP

Richard Holden, UNSW

You might have missed it – what with the biggest recession since the 1930s and a pandemic going on – but there may be big, and bad, changes happening to a media landscape near you.

Right now the Australian government is considering amending the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 to force Google and Facebook to pay local commercial media organisations for the sharing of their content on the digital platforms.

The News Media and Digital Platforms Bargaining Code proposed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission will require the tech and media companies to make terms through “mandatory binding arbitration”. It will also oblige them to divulge parts of their core intellectual property (such Google’s search algorithm).

It has been lauded as a world-first in addressing the power imbalance between the platforms and traditional news organisations.

Champions such as commission chief Rod Sims argue it’s a simple matter of forcing Google and Facebook to pay a fair price for extracting value from journalism for which they pay nothing. As Sims put it:

What this was all about was the imbalance in bargaining power, the market failure that comes from that, and underpayment for news having a detrimental effect on Australian society.

Who could argue with that? Even federal treasurer Josh Frydenberg has described it as “a question of fairness”.

But from an economic standpoint the whole bargaining code is hopelessly confused. It fails to properly understand the source of competitive pressure for media companies, and why they have lost revenues over the last 15 years.

Mandatory binding arbitration between tech and media companies is also a completely inappropriate policy tool to achieve the public policy goal of fostering high-quality journalism.

As I have written about in detail for the Stigler Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, making the code law risks doing serious harm to Australian consumers while shovelling money to large media companies like Nine Entertainment and News Corp Australia.

Faced with the prospect of having to divulge key intellectual property, it would not be surprising if Google and Facebook simply prefer not to be in the Australian market. Millions of Australians using Google, YouTube and Facebook will lose out.

Media revenue sinking

Between 2002 and 2018, consulting firm AlphaBeta estimates total annual revenue for Australian newspapers fell from A$4.4 billion to A$3.0 billion. Almost all of this was due to lost classified advertising revenue, worth A$1.5 billion in 2002 but just A$200 million in 2018.

“That’s Google’s fault,” you might cry.

Actually no. The vast bulk of lost classified advertising revenue was due to online “pure-plays” such as Seek, Domain and Carsales. Google and Facebook took basically none of this revenue.




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The media companies were sitting on a gold mine of classified advertising. Then there was massive technological disruption due to the internet and smart phones.

That, as they say in the classics, is show business.

It doesn’t justify making companies who happened to succeed in an adjacent space at the same time fork over a chunk of their revenues.

But aren’t tech companies ‘stealing’ content?

If big tech companies were somehow allowing you and me free access to content we would otherwise have to pay for, there might be a case to answer.

That would be like Google Maps not only giving you directions to a restaurant but the means to also avoid paying for your meal.

But using a search engine does not allow you to get free meals, nor to get around a news organisation’s pay wall.




Read more:
It’s not ‘fair’ and it won’t work: an argument against the ACCC forcing Google and Facebook to pay for news


In fact, having their content pop up in search results, or shared on social media, helps Australian media companies to attract readers and sell subscriptions – something that now accounts for roughly half the revenues of some leading players such as The Australian.

All you get for “free” is a snippet of a line or two from the search.

For instance, when I searched for news about recently deceased US Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, I got this:

If you can figure out the full content of the article from that snippet, you should be using your superpowers for other, more lucrative purposes.

Beware the politics

There is a very real risk this misguided code will end up becoming law.

An overzealous regulator has proposed something that stands to benefit the big media companies, who are – not surprisingly – strongly for it.

Those same media companies have huge influence over public perceptions and the fate of politicians. It will be a brave elected representative who pushes back on the proposed code and draft legislation.

But if politicians were serious about resolving the real issue at stake in all of this, they would act more directly.

Like newspapers all around the world, Australian media and journalists are under pressure – and one thing most people agree on is that high-quality news and journalism is critical to a well-functioning democracy.




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Whatever the market forces that have slashed the funding of such journalism, there is a strong case for government intervention. But if the Australian government wants to subsidise high-quality journalism, it should do it itself.

With the 10-year bond rate less than 1%, it would cost the government just A$18 million a year to fund the interest bill on A$2 billion of media subsidies a year. That’s 72 cents per Australian a year.

And all without driving away the hugely valuable services of companies like Google and Facebook that Australian consumers love.The Conversation

Richard Holden, Professor of Economics, UNSW

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Is fast-tracking funds to Foxtel the best way to support the media during COVID?



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Johan Lidberg, Monash University

According to an ABC report, government funds were fast-tracked to Foxtel during the coronavirus pandemic.

This news will raise eyebrows, as the media — like so many industries — tries to survive the pain and disruption brought by COVID-19.

Why are some outlets missing out when others have their requests prioritised?

The Foxtel fast-track

The background to these latest Foxtel funds is a $30 million grant, controversially awarded to the subscription broadcaster in 2017.

This was to

support the broadcast of underrepresented sports on subscription television, including women’s sports, niche sports and sports with a high level of community involvement and participation.

At the time, media reports noted the government did not adequately explain why it had given the funds to Foxtel.

Fast-forward to April 2020 and COVID-19 was wreaking havoc in the media sector. The federal government announced a support package for the media, but Foxtel missed out.




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However, as the ABC reported, after a letter from Foxtel chief executive Patrick Delany, the TV service quickly received $17.5 million.

This included bringing forward $7.5 million of taxpayer money already granted to Foxtel. In July 2020, a further $10 million was awarded to Foxtel, with the same opaque justification as the 2017 grant.

The ABC was able to report the process behind these developments following a Freedom of Information (FOI) request.

Foxtel supported as national broadcaster struggles

The Foxtel funds came amid yet another round of cost-cutting and job losses at the ABC. In June, the ABC announced 250 job losses to deal with an $84 million budget shortfall.

ABC logo against colourful light backdrop
The ABC recently announced 250 job losses.
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As of this week, the iconic 7:45am radio bulletin no longer features in Australians’ morning routines as a result of the cuts.

Meanwhile, regional media outlets have been particularly hard hit during COVID. We have also seen recent job losses at News Corp (who is a part owner of Foxtel) and Channel 10.

What support have media companies had during COVID?

The government announced a COVID-support package for the media in April.

This included $41 million in rebates for use of the broadcasting spectrum, targeted at commercial television and radio broadcasters.




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A $50 million Public Interest News Gathering program was also announced to support public interest journalism delivered by commercial television, newspaper and radio businesses in regional Australia.

Is this the best use of taxpayer funds?

The reports of the fast-tracked funds to Foxtel beg the question, where is public money best spent? On the public broadcaster so it can maintain its crucial services (with another bushfire season around the corner) — or on a subscription-based commercial broadcaster?

When you consider the different support packages the Morrison government has launched as part of its pandemic response, there is one glaring omission — support for the national broadcaster.

The ABC is the most trusted media brand in the country. But instead of supporting it, to help us get through the pandemic, the Coalition continues to bleed it. This is the polar opposite to its support of News Corp-owned Foxtel, a relationship the government seems much more comfortable with and clearly prioritises.

Not enough information

When considering whether Foxtel deserves its funding, it would be useful to see a government-issued summary of how it used the first $30 million.

We have seen some reporting (again via FOI requests) of how the initial $7 million was used to boost sports coverage. But given this is taxpayers’ money, best practice would be open and transparent government reporting on how the funding is utilised.

It would also be useful to have an explanation of why the extra funds were provided now.

Unfortunately, information access and openness has not been the Morrison government’s forte.

We have seen a number of cases where the FOI process has been contrary to the spirit of the Freedom of Information Act, which holds that as much information as possible should be made available to the public.

Open filing cabinet, with paper files
The Australian government has been criticised for the high rate of FOI refusals.
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The blocking of FOI requests over Energy Minister Angus Taylor’s attack on Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore is one recent example.

The recent requests to the Morrison government about Foxtel is another. According to the ABC, more than half of the hundreds of pages released were blacked out and 80% of the rest had substantial redactions. Communications Minister Paul Fletcher’s chief of staff, Ryan Bloxsom, was one of the FOI decision makers and justified the extensive redactions in this way:

I do not consider it would inform debate on a matter of public importance or promote effective oversight of public expenditure.

This is not just out of line with the aims of the FOI Act, it means Australians remain ill-informed about how and why tax payer money is being spent. Our public discourse is worse of for it.

This makes funding public interest journalism even more important — especially in the regions where coverage of courts and local councils is the engine room of our democracy.




Read more:
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The Conversation


Johan Lidberg, Associate Professor, School of Media, Film and Journalism, Monash University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

It’s not ‘fair’ and it won’t work: an argument against the ACCC’s news media bargaining code



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Damien Spry, University of South Australia

Google and Facebook have threatened to limit or remove news services for Australian users, in response to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s draft news media bargaining code.

This week, Facebook announced should the code become law, the company would stop letting publishers and users share local and international news on its Australian Facebook and Instagram sites.

Google has also made implicit threats to limit its Australian news services – potentially by removing Google News in Australia, as it did in Spain in 2014.

Arguments in favour of the code centre on two points. First, that Australian media outlets are in critical danger of going bust because of Google and Facebook’s dominance of the digital advertising market.

Second, that Google and Facebook are Godzilla-like entities dominating the market and resisting any regulation attempt – especially one that could set an international precedent.

It’s true regulation has a role in addressing the anti-competitive aspects of the digital advertising industry, but I have doubts about the ACCC’s code. It would allow commercial news businesses to bargain with Google and Facebook, in order to be paid for Australian news content included on their platforms.

But I don’t think it will work (which I say reluctantly as both Google and Facebook have much to answer for). I also don’t think the code is fair – and there’s a better way to solve the problem.




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In a world first, Australia plans to force Facebook and Google to pay for news (but ABC and SBS miss out)


Misunderstanding how news works on social media

For years, Facebook has tinkered with its algorithm to prioritise posts from users’ personal connections, in what chief Mark Zuckerberg characterised as a preference for the digital lounge over the digital town square.

Basically, your Facebook News Feed (the main feed in which you discover new content) isn’t really a “news” feed. Rather, it features personalised content from those you most often, or have most recently, connected with.

If a news story appears on your feed, it has likely been shared by one of your connections. Or, you may be following that company’s Facebook page, or the company may have paid to advertise (boost) the content.

Which news stories you come across on Facebook depends on a variety of factors and algorithmic decisions. This process is complicated and vastly different to how news is presented on a publication’s website, or in a newspaper.

The ACCC’s attempt to have media businesses “fairly” paid for the value of Australian news on social media is problematic because accurately attributing value to this content is anything but straightforward.

It’s worth noting a major point of resistance against the ACCC code is the requirement for Google and Facebook to give 28 days’ notice of algorithmic changes that will affect either referral traffic to news, or the ranking of news behind paywalls.

A person engages with content on facebook via their mobile.
Social media algorithms dictate you’re more likely to be exposed to content that reflects your past online activity, as well as the activity of your online friends.
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The opaque business of digital advertising

Commercial news today is funded largely through advertising based on audience numbers and demographics, rather than content alone (excluding subscription models).

Traditionally, however, audiences have been targeted based on news content. For example, ads for wedding dresses would be placed in bridal magazines. In such scenarios, the content itself is valuable to advertisers because it attracts their specific audience.

In digital advertising, however, the news content is often secondary or even inconsequential for generating ad revenue. The ads target their audience directly based on a user profile of recorded behaviours, characteristics and preferences. The page the ad appears on may be a factor, but one of many.

This is called programmatic advertising. When you visit a site, an automated “bidding war” is instantly conducted where your user profile is matched against potential advertisers. The winner takes the ad spot – and this is decided by several factors including offer price, as well as the likelihood of the ad being clicked.

All of this happens in the time it takes for a website to load (about 200 milliseconds).

The ACCCC code proposes remuneration for publishers based on a negotiated value of news content, but the value of news for online advertisers isn’t derived from the content as much as the targeted audience.

Hence, the tussle between the ACCC, Google and Facebook is both confusing and confused.

Assessing the value of news

The ACCC code also conflates the ways digital news content and social media users are socially and commercially valued. In explaining the need for the code, the ACCC states:

While bargaining power imbalances exist in other areas, the bargaining power imbalance between news media businesses and major digital platforms is being addressed as a strong and independent media landscape is essential to a well-functioning democracy.

This “public sphere” ideal is the premise for treating news content as being important enough to force digital giants to subsidise it. Fair enough, but the ACCC’s “professional standards test” which news businesses must pass to qualify for remuneration sets a low bar.

It doesn’t consider important aspects of public interest journalism, such as concentration of ownership, or newsroom diversity – a vexed issue in Australia’s news landscape.

Also, the code states the ABC and SBS are not able to claim remuneration (but can still benefit from information about algorithms and data). This is based on the idea that commercial news media are more vulnerable than public broadcasters, due to advertising revenue lost to Google and Facebook.

With this, the argument has changed: the value of news is not only democratic, it’s also commercial.

There is another way

It seems Google and Facebook would rather take extreme measures than be forced to pay for news, or provide news businesses information about algorithm changes and user data. Both companies have claimed they provide greater value to Australian news businesses than they receive.

Perhaps the way forward is to regulate programmatic advertising. Specifically, we should scrutinise the complex network of companies that discretely trade data profiles and advertising space. And this industry is dominated by, guess who, Google and Facebook.

Reform in this space may help address the advertising revenue and market power problems the code seeks to resolve.

The ACCC’s next cab off the rank is a review and report on the ad tech industry that considers these issues.

Hopefully it will suggest approaches to regulating the digital advertising market. This seems a better option than the compensation currently being sought.




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The Conversation


Damien Spry, Lecturer, University of South Australia

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

If Facebook really pulls news from its Australian sites, we’ll have a much less compelling product



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Rob Nicholls, UNSW

Facebook has announced it will ban publishers and people in Australia from sharing local and international news on Facebook and Instagram if a proposal to force tech giants to pay for news becomes law.

The announcement follows the release of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s draft news media bargaining code, under which Google and Facebook would be forced to pay for news on their sites to help fund public interest journalism. Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced in April the code would be mandatory.

On its website, Facebook Australia’s Will Easton said:

Assuming this draft code becomes law, we will reluctantly stop allowing publishers and people in Australia from sharing local and international news on Facebook and Instagram. This is not our first choice – it is our last. But it is the only way to protect against an outcome that defies logic and will hurt, not help, the long-term vibrancy of Australia’s news and media sector.

Google is campaigning against the same draft code, telling users of Google Search and YouTube the services would be under threat unless the government dumped its proposed revenue-sharing laws.




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Facebook risks making its products less compelling

If Facebook follows through with this threat, it will potentially lead to very uncompelling content on both Facebook and Instagram. Can you imagine Instagram or Facebook without the ABC or Australian news sources?

How are you going to share interesting information with family and friends without being able to put links into posts?

Facebook claims the ACCC code “misunderstands the dynamics of the internet”. But it seems Facebook misunderstands how mandatory industry codes work. If you want to be a platform business in Australia, you have to follow the relevant code. If not, you can exit.

The ACCC code is similar to the franchising code of conduct. For instance, if I want to set up a pizza franchise in Australia, as a franchisee I have to abide by the franchising code of conduct.

Those are the rules of the game in Australia because there’s a recognised power imbalance between franchisors and franchisees. The same goes for news media businesses and social media platforms.

Facebook’s public response focuses largely on the exchange of money for news content but the ACCC code is much broader than that; it’s not just a way for news media businesses to be paid. It recognises Australian news content on social media platforms provides value to both sides and any resulting payment is simply a net of that value.

On the other hand, Facebook has suggested it will have to pay for every bit of news that appears on its platforms. In fact, the code allows for the private values of each news media business to be revealed during negotiations, which may end up in a price that is actually very low for Facebook, or even free.

The ACCC allows for both the news media businesses and platform businesses to negotiate, but Facebook’s threat today suggests they are in no mood for negotiation.

A blanket ban

If Facebook sticks to its claims, it would need to implement a blanket ban on all Australian news media businesses.

This proposition isn’t compelling because it means no news at all. And then there’s the issue of fringe news and information sources.

You could argue citizen journalists and amateur news content creators aren’t media businesses, so you’ll still have them – but they won’t have the checks and balances in place required by the media industry.

Sources such as QAnon actively and deliberately spread misinformation and will also remain. These sources could cause irreparable damage if they go unchecked or without any reliable rebuttal.

A calculated, commercial response

Facebook’s position is a commercial one and presumably has been carefully thought through.

To the extent Facebook fails to go ahead with the threat of removing all news for Australian users, the platform will inevitably be captured by the ACCC code.

If they were to post news without paying, the ACCC would likely come down on Facebook. The penalties could be as high as 10% of Facebook’s annual revenue in Australia.

What about Facebook News?

Facebook News offers news content from approved publishers (who are paid), collated for users to consume within the Facebook platform. The service launched last year in the US and could have been a viable option for Australia’s news media businesses.

But this service wasn’t offered early enough to Australia. The current debacle is a result of both Facebook and Google holding back in negotiations when there could have been a voluntary code of conduct much earlier.

Voluntary codes are non-mandatory sets of standards that aim to help organisations such as industry associations deal with their members and customers. They only apply to those who sign up to them.

Initially, the ACCC was directed to try to negotiate a voluntary code and the change to a mandatory one was driven by the failure of these negotiations.

It’s Facebook’s failure to make a sensible offer early enough that has landed it in this position.

At the end of the day, if Facebook follows through on its threat, we’ll end up with a platform that is much less appealing. More than anything else, that’s likely to drive the decline of Facebook.




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In a world first, Australia plans to force Facebook and Google to pay for news (but ABC and SBS miss out)


The Conversation


Rob Nicholls, Associate professor in Business Law. Director of the UNSW Business School Cybersecurity and Data Governance Research Network, UNSW

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Facebook and Google used to be the future of news. But now media companies need more strings to their bow



Kedar Dhond/Unsplash, CC BY

James Meese, RMIT University and Edward Hurcombe, Queensland University of Technology

Given the recent commentary about the reforms proposed for the news media sector, you would be forgiven for thinking Google and Facebook are the only game in town.

The planned reforms arose from last year’s Digital Platforms Inquiry by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), which focused squarely on the corporate behaviour of these two tech behemoths.

It is clear Google and Facebook will be the first platforms regulated under the draft mandatory code that will potentially force them to pay for content produced by Australian news media companies. The move is a response to what the ACCC describes as “a significant bargaining power imbalance […] between Australian news media businesses and Google and Facebook”.

This idea that news companies are essentially stuck with Google and Facebook, for better or worse, is a common view. Yet while that might have been true a few years ago, media companies are realising there are other ways to cultivate readers, and there’s no need to be beholden to tech platforms that generate clicks but don’t want to pay for the privilege.

In the mid-2010s, many news companies seemed to follow Facebook’s every move. When Facebook promoted video, the media invested in video. When it down-ranked clickbait headlines, content writers frantically altered their style to maintain their presence in the news feed. Newsrooms have had a similarly dependent (albeit less direct) relationship with Google.

The focus on adapting to Google and Facebooks’s algorithms completely changed newsroom practices over the past decade, as journalists have weighed editorial considerations against audience metrics.

Is this still the case?

This dependency developed at a time when major platforms, particularly Facebook, were engaging substantially with the distribution of news. But in recent years this trend has declined, as governments have begun to regulate platforms in response to concerns over “fake news”.

Facebook performed perhaps the most public pivot, changing its algorithm in January 2018 to promote content from users’ friends and family. As a result, traffic to news sites fell, leaving profit-starved media companies to pursue alternative strategies or simply lay off staff.




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In our research, published earlier this year, we spoke to 15 Australian journalists and editors who had collectively worked across 11 media companies after the dust had settled from the 2019 crisis.

We asked them whether their companies still depend on Facebook for traffic, or whether they have moved to other platforms, or are now doing something else entirely to cultivate their readership.

Breaking up with Facebook

Many respondents, particularly those who had worked at newer companies focused on social media, revealed they had followed the demands of the Facebook algorithm at times. They had pivoted to video and had focused on share counts. However, respondents working at older media companies also noted that lots of readers still visited their publication’s home page, which challenges the idea that companies depend totally on Facebook.

Companies were also exploring different ways of generating revenue. These included placing ads inside content (known as native advertising) and holding events.

The standout trend, however, was a renewed focus on subscriptions, ensuring that a certain percentage of readers actually paid money for the news product at some point.

The Conversation (which does not charge for access to its content) was one of the newsrooms that saw a steep drop in traffic as a result of the January 2018 algorithm change. As such, it has pivoted its digital strategy to prioritise the channels over which it has the most control, particularly its daily newsletter.

That’s not to say companies have stopped trying to engage with big platforms. Many are consciously trying to make their news easy to find via Google search (a process called search engine optimisation. Some companies (including The Conversation) have also begun distributing news through Instagram (which is owned by Facebook).

Yet although the big platforms are doubtless here to stay, our research reveals a distinctly changed relationship between news and social media, compared with the past decade. Many companies, particularly newer ones like Buzzfeed and Vice, previously built huge audiences off the back of social media, and grew at a dizzying rate as a result. Now, companies are more interested in securing a stable revenue stream than in harvesting clicks.

The pandemic effect

This has become even more important amid the economic chaos caused by COVID-19. Advertising spending has dried up, leading to another round of media industry layoffs.

This suggests news media are still struggling to secure an alternative income stream to plug the hole in advertising revenue. The big question is whether big tech platforms will step in and help fill the gap by making financial contributions to news providers. Google’s current campaign against the draft mandatory code suggests they are deeply unwilling to do this.




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Our research shows the relationship between news media and big tech platforms is far from straightforward. This is supported by a recent survey, which found that while many young people access news through social media, older people still prefer television or news websites. Not every Australian gets their news via social media.

There may come a time when platforms become the central access point for news, but it hasn’t happened yet. This doesn’t mean the ACCC should abandon platform regulation, but it does mean news companies are probably wise to find other ways of reaching their readers while they still can.The Conversation

James Meese, Research fellow, RMIT University and Edward Hurcombe, Research associate, Queensland University of Technology

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

ABC has for too long been unwilling to push back against interference – at its journalists’ expense



Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND

Denis Muller, University of Melbourne

For those who watch the affairs of the ABC through the eyes of a critical friend, the removal of Emma Alberici, made public on August 21, is deeply disturbing.

It is the climax to a destructive series of events that began more than two years ago and once again draws attention to two serious weaknesses in the ABC’s management arrangements.

One is structural: the editor-in-chief is fatally compromised in that role by also being managing director. The managing director has corporate responsibilities that conflict with his or her editorial responsibilities every time the government tightens the financial screws.

That is not a reflection on David Anderson’s character or probity; it is the inevitable consequence of having the one person in both roles.

It also happens that Anderson – like his ill-fated predecessor Michelle Guthrie – is not a journalist. This makes it hard for him to give the kind of editorial leadership the ABC requires.




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The second weakness is cultural. This long pre-dates Anderson’s term and is the product of sustained hostility from successive Coalition governments going back to the start of the Howard prime ministership in 1996.

The preceding 12 years of the Hawke-Keating governments had hardly been a golden age for the ABC, but it generally got year-on-year funding increases.

And in the tough-minded minister for communications, Michael Duffy, it had a defender in cabinet who was prepared to confront Hawke and other ministers infuriated by some of the ABC’s reporting.

As for the three years of the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd interlude, Labor was too busy tearing itself to pieces to bother with the ABC.

Former Prime Minister John Howard
Concerted government attacks on the ABC began under John Howard.
Mark Graham/AAP

Now, according to Anderson, after six years of cumulative budget cuts by the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison administrations, the total effective reduction in ABC funding will amount to A$105.9 million per year by 2022.

And as for defenders in cabinet, the present communications minister, Paul Fletcher, is as mute as a swan.

Clearly all this has sapped morale.

In September 2018, a dossier compiled by Michelle Guthrie was leaked, revealing an email in which Justin Milne, as chair of the ABC, told her to get rid of Alberici, declaring the government “hate her”.

Over the preceding months, the government had repeatedly criticised stories Alberici had done in her role as chief economics correspondent.

Guthrie’s dossier came to light in The Age and Sydney Morning Herald at a time when the ABC had decided to sack her. In the ensuing “firestorm” – Milne’s word – he was consumed as well.




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Milne had been concerned also with the work of political editor Andrew Probyn. He wanted Guthrie to “shoot” Probyn because the government hated him too and his continued presence was putting at risk half-a-billion dollars in funding for the ABC.

Assuming Milne and Guthrie were telling the truth, there could not be a clearer instance of how the government was using funding to undermine the ABC’s editorial independence.

The effects of this sustained intimidation are felt a long way down the ABC’s editorial food chain.

In May 2018, Barnaby Joyce accepted a reported $150,000 fee to appear with his lover on Channel Seven and talk about the affair that ended Joyce’s marriage and was a breach of the ministerial code of conduct. The ABC asked me to write a commentary on it.

I filed an article saying Joyce’s decision to take money for telling a story that concerned his public duties called into question his fitness for public office.

There was an awkward response from within the ABC indicating some disquiet further up the line. Would I mind not saying that about Joyce?

The rest of that exchange was off the record, but suffice to say I minded very much and withdrew the article. It later appeared unchanged in The Conversation and The Age.

That incident – small in itself but large in principle – revealed a malaise in editorial leadership at several levels.

Four months later came the revelations in Guthrie’s dossier about Milne’s attempts to have Probyn and Alberici sacked. It seems reasonable to infer word was filtering down from the top that if the ABC wanted to avoid yet more trouble from the government, it had better mind its manners.

Former ABC chair Justin Milne and former managing director Michelle Guthrie
Justin Milne told Michelle Guthrie to sack Emma Alberici and Andrew Probyn because the government hated them.
Joel Carrett/AAP

Alberici is now gone anyway, part of a wave of 200 redundancies announced by Anderson in June in response to the latest round of budget cuts.

It is clear from a leak of correspondence between her lawyer and the ABC the parting was anything but amicable, having finished up in the Fair Work Commission.

Her position as chief economics correspondent had been abolished and she was offered positions as a presenter. Alberici tweeted she wanted a reporting job.

So the ghosts of Justin Milne, Malcolm Turnbull and Michelle Guthrie continue to haunt the ABC.

The board that presided over the Milne-Guthrie implosion is still largely intact, despite having come out badly from a Senate inquiry into that debacle.

The committee of inquiry said:

This catalogue of events may give rise to the perception that the ABC Board had not been sufficiently active in protecting either the ABC’s independence from political interference or its own integrity.

And the structural and cultural weaknesses laid bare by the saga remain.

The strategy the Howard government developed for dealing with the ABC – funding cuts, pointless inquiries and cultural warfare – is being followed to the letter by the present government.

2017 was a vintage year, and sums up the problems:

  • Abbott’s cuts from three years earlier were working their way through the system

  • Pauline Hanson, smarting from a Four Corners investigation, secured a promise from the government to hold an inquiry into whether the ABC and SBS operated on a “level playing field” (Answer: yes they did)

One of history’s many lessons is that appeasement does not work. Editorial executives have one over-riding responsibility: to provide a safe environment in which their staff can do independent journalism, regardless of corporate, political or economic interests.




Read more:
Why the ABC, and the public that trusts it, must stand firm against threats to its editorial independence


Part of that is having the professional experience to understand what is involved, which includes absorbing the bullying that comes from powerful people and, where necessary, hitting back.

There has been no sign the ABC’s journalists have been getting that kind of protection, least of all from the board.

Instead, they are at the mercy of a vindictive government, urged on by its mates in News Corporation, which has a vested interest in weakening the ABC and shamelessly campaigns for exactly that.

The original version of this article contained a reference to an email concerning the coverage of marriage equality on the ABC. The author has subsequently learnt more about the origins and context of that email and acknowledges that the context as presented in the original article was wrong. That passage has been removed.The Conversation

Denis Muller, Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of Melbourne

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

‘Suck it and see’ or face a digital tax, former ACCC boss Allan Fels warns Google and Facebook




Andrea Carson, La Trobe University and Andrew Dodd, University of Melbourne

Have you used Google lately and been greeted by a yellow warning saying that the way Australians search on Google is under threat?

To understand why these messages are appearing, Media Files interviewed former chair of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), Professor Allan Fels, and CEO of the Public Interest Journalism Initiative (PIJI), Anna Draffin (full recording above, recorded from home due to the pandemic).




Read more:
Google’s ‘open letter’ is trying to scare Australians. The company simply doesn’t want to pay for news


This episode of Media Files is about world-first laws to be introduced later this year that will force Google and Facebook to pay for news on their sites to help fund public interest journalism.

The yellow warning messages by Google (which also appear on its sister site, YouTube) aim to garner public support for a campaign to pressure the federal government to dump revenue-sharing laws planned for later this year.

In a similar vein, Facebook’s Australian and New Zealand director of public policy, Mia Garlick, argued in the Sydney Morning Herald before the draft laws were released, that Facebook already provided top value to media outlets with

billions of opportunities for publishers to monetise their stories, gain new paying subscribers, serve ads, and keep Australians on their websites.

And while Allan Fels said he’s not surprised by the tech giants fighting back against the new law, the public will expect the tech giants to “suck it and see”.

“I think people will ask Google and Facebook to ‘suck it and see’ to see what turns out instead of just going home with a cricket bat or baseball bat,” said Fels.

“It’s normal, it’s par for the course, in ACCC matters, that parties make threats […] with jobs, investment, higher prices, leave the country. Everything!”.

Fels believes the Morrison government may well respond with a new digital tax if Google or Facebook pulls some business out of Australia, like it did in Spain in 2014. Then, the Spanish government charged Google copyright fees for using news snippets, so Google shut down its news service.

“Personally, I think that the government has got this huge stick in the closet if Google walks or partly walks, and that is to put on a digital tax,” Fels said, adding that

A digital tax is being talked about globally, mainly at the OECD. And virtually every member of the OECD wants to put a digital tax on the platforms except the US. Certainly the US under Donald Trump […] But even if the US continue to oppose it, I think a lot of countries are just going to proceed with their own digital tax.

How did we get here?

Following the ACCC digital platforms inquiry report last year, the consumer watchdog recommended the two tech giants pay Australia’s major newsrooms (excluding the SBS and ABC) an annual fee to use news on their sites.

Anna Draffin and the big media companies agree with the ACCC’s findings that media companies cannot fairly compete with the digital platforms to win advertising revenue, and that this revenue shortfall has led to masthead closures and journalism job cuts.

Draffin said its introduction is urgent as COVID-19 has accelerated the demise of many news outlets, particularly in regional Australia.

At first, the ACCC was to oversee a voluntary code with the technology companies negotiating in good faith with the big news outlets.

But, unhappy with the progress of the bargaining talks, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced in April the code would be mandatory. The government released draft laws in July sparking Google’s fear campaign warning its users that Australians “search experience will be hurt by new regulation”.

In an August 24 blog post, Google argues it helps “more than 20 million Australians” and is unlikely to shut down Australian news from its search engines.

A screen shot of a blog post from Google Australia.
Google Australia’s blog post said the firm helps ‘more than 20 million Australians and over one million businesses in Australia.’
Google

Facebook contends news is just a fraction of the information on its platform and the mandatory code is unnecessary.

ACCC chair Rod Sims, on the other hand, argues that

News content brings significant benefits to the digital platforms, far beyond the limited direct revenue generated from advertising shown against a news item […] News media businesses should be paid a fair amount in return for these benefits.“

The mandatory code includes transparency measures to force the digital platforms to share data and insights about how it uses algorithms to rank news content online.

Draffin said while the proposed laws are welcome, at this stage, they do not include the public broadcasters nor do they include smaller newsrooms with annual turnover under A$150,000.

“The code alone isn’t necessarily going to be the solution particularly for that [smaller] end of the market,” said Draffin.

“New market entrants would largely sit outside of any benefit from the code. So there could be room for a loan or venture capital fund for start-ups as a separate policy setting,” she said.




Read more:
In a world first, Australia plans to force Facebook and Google to pay for news (but ABC and SBS miss out)


The draft laws force the companies to negotiate for up to three months or face a binding binary dispute resolution where independent arbiters determine the winning bid among the bargaining parties. Breaches of the news laws would attract fines of up to $10 million or 10% of a company’s annual domestic turnover.

Public consultation into the draft mandatory bargaining code closes this Friday, August 28.


Additional credits

Theme music: Susie Wilkins.

Image

ShutterstockThe Conversation

Andrea Carson, Associate Professor, Department of Politics, Media and Philosophy, La Trobe University and Andrew Dodd, Director of the Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of Melbourne

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Playing the COVID-19 blame game may feel good, but it could come at a cost — the government’s credibilit


Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND

Robert Hoffmann, RMIT University; Ananta Neelim, RMIT University; Meg Elkins, RMIT University, and Peyman Khezr, RMIT University

Fingers have been pointing all over the place as the country searches for answers to the stubbornly high coronavirus cases and rising death rates in Victoria.

While Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has been fronting an increasingly hostile media — as well as a parliamentary inquiry looking into the state’s handling of the pandemic — the federal government has been under fire for its neglect of the aged care sector.

At the same time, Andrews has frequently chastised the Victorian public for not following the rules of social distancing and mask wearing.

Amid all the rancour, it’s worth asking, why are we so quick to assign blame during a crisis, particularly to those in positions of power? And could doing so be counterproductive if the government starts to lose credibility in the public’s eye?

Premier Daniel Andrews and his health team have been in the firing line for weeks over the state’s coronavirus response.
Erik Anderson/AAP

Scapegoating has a long history

As the folklorist Jon D. Lee explains in his book, An Epidemic of Rumors, blame is a normal reaction to epidemics or other calamities. Fear activates powerful psychological mechanisms that allow us to cope. And blaming others is a common coping strategy.

It is not just those in authority who bear the brunt of scapegoating. Foreign powers, unseen conspiracies and minorities have all become targets in the past. During the bubonic plague in the 14th century, Jews faced persecution as the supposed carriers. More recently, older women in Tanzania were accused of witchcraft during a period of extreme drought.




Read more:
Tensions rise on coronavirus handling as the media take control of the accountability narrative


In the current COVID-19 crisis, our own marginalised groups have been targeted. The temporary contract workers employed as security guards in the hotel quarantine program and young Queensland women who dodged mandatory quarantine are recent examples of this kind of scapegoating. Asian Australians have also been taunted, threatened and spat on.

But in Victoria, the government has become the main villain. COVID-19 has come at a time when trust in government has never been lower. As a result, compared to other countries and other times in our history, government has become an easy target.

Why do we feel the need to point the finger?

Some of the reasons are entirely justified and well-intentioned. Freedom of expression, for example, is an essential part of functioning democracies. Our institutions can only remain strong and effective as long as people stay engaged in public life — and hold the powerful to account.

The World Bank has also listed “voice and accountability” as one of six dimensions it examines as part of its worldwide governance index. The index looks at the perception of citizen engagement in selecting their government, as well as freedom of expression, association and media.

The management of the pandemic has highlighted weak and strong governance systems around the world. Norway and New Zealand rank at the top of the “voice and accountability” index, so it’s no surprise they have received high praise for their COVID-19 responses. Australia is also very high, in 10th position.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has been praised in New Zealand for her handling of the pandemic.
DAVID ROWLAND/AAP

Other countries that have not done so well on the pandemic are further down the list. The US is 37th and Brazil is 74th.

When done in the right way, casting blame also has an important social function. Holding perceived transgressors, including those in positions of power, to account for their failures and mistakes reinforces society’s rules and acts as a deterrent against those who would flout them.

Blame can alleviate stress, grief and guilt

Blaming is also a normal psychological process that allows individuals to manage stress and fear when faced with life-threatening upheavals.

One of the most powerful human needs is to feel we have some sense of control over our environment – and COVID-19 has undermined this in spectacular fashion.

Control includes the ability to explain why things happen. And pointing fingers at an easy scapegoat, such as the government, can sometimes provide the answers we need to regain control.




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Can Victorians stick to the stage 4 rules? Our perception of what others are doing might be the key


Loss of control is also frequently accompanied by grief. In psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross’ famous “five stages of grief” from the 1960s, anger is identified as one of the emotions people need to confront in the grieving process. And anger is often associated with finger pointing.

As Kübler-Ross’s collaborator, David Kessler, said this year, people are grieving in a completely new way due to the coronavirus, and part of this is manifested through anger at authority figures, as in, “you’re making me stay home and taking away my activities”.

This is a normal emotion, but one that people need to get past:

You can also think about how to let go of what you can’t control. What your neighbour is doing is out of your control. What is in your control is staying six feet away from them and washing your hands.

Some people may also feel partly responsible for Australia’s inability to contain COVID-19, yet unable to personally make a difference.

Blame helps reconcile these feelings. If someone else is at fault for the pandemic spiralling out of control — for instance, our leaders — that absolves the rest of us from blame and the burden of responsibility.

When blame strips the government of credibility

Rallying around a common cause, even an innocent scapegoat, can bring people together. But this should never be a reason to participate in a witch hunt. Generations of wrongly blamed minorities are a powerful reminder of how social injustice can become entrenched.

More important is to hold those in power to account through social activism, as epidemiologist Jonathan Quick argues in the End of Epidemics. Bureaucracies can suffer from inertia, he argues, and ignore the long-term strategies needed to make us better prepared in the future.

But a government that has lost credibility because of unjustified finger-pointing will struggle to marshal the collective resources needed to effectively fight the pandemic.

Victorians have largely complied with the latest lockdown orders, even as criticism of the government picks up steam.
James Ross/AAP

Research shows credibility is hugely important when it comes to the power of persuasion — and this is the main lever the government has right now to get people to behave the right way.

Previous pandemics have seen riots and civil unrest. In his book The Psychology of Pandemics, Steven Taylor describes how health professionals and local officials were attacked when visiting communities in Africa and Asia during the Ebola and SARS outbreaks. He argues civil disobedience happens when people share a belief that the authorities are to blame in some way.

We have not yet reached that stage in Victoria, despite the public outrage over the government’s missteps.

The reasons for the pandemic are complex and evolving. No simple scapegoating narrative can change that. But if we hold onto anger and continue to point fingers, it could prevent society from doing what is necessary to win the fight.The Conversation

Robert Hoffmann, Professor of Economics and Chair of Behavioural Business Lab, RMIT University; Ananta Neelim, Lecturer in Economics, RMIT University; Meg Elkins, Senior Lecturer with School of Economics, Finance and Marketing, RMIT University, and Peyman Khezr, Lecturer in Economics, RMIT University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

‘Killing the chicken to scare the monkey’: what Jimmy Lai’s arrest means for Hong Kong’s independent media



Kin Cheung/AP

Brendan Clift, University of Melbourne

The arrest this week of pro-democracy media tycoon Jimmy Lai in Hong Kong reveals the repressive reality of the city’s new made-in-China national security law.

It also sends a sharp signal to the remaining independent media in the territory: watch your step, or you could be next.

Lai, his two sons and four top executives of the Next Digital media group were all arrested under the new law. On the same day, police raided the offices of Next’s flagship publication, Apple Daily, deploying over 200 officers to search the premises for almost nine hours.

China imposed the national security law in June, bypassing the local legislature and breaching the principle of non-interference in the city’s governance.

The new law established a comprehensive PRC-style national security regime overriding aspects of Hong Kong’s common law legal system.

The national security law is designed to make dissent all but impossible in Hong Kong, including in the city’s once-freewheeling but gradually diminished independent media.

Jimmy Lai had been an outspoken critic of the government — and knew his arrest was likely.
VERNON YUEN/EPA

What the new law means for journalists

Lai and the others were arrested under article 29 of the new law, which criminalises collusion with a foreign country or external elements to endanger national security.

Banned acts include collaborating with a foreign entity to impose sanctions on Hong Kong or China, seriously disrupting the making of laws or policies, or provoking hatred of the government among Hong Kong residents.

Although Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement is a grassroots, homegrown affair, Beijing has sought to portray it as the result of foreign meddling. Hong Kong’s last two leaders, Carrie Lam and CY Leung, both alleged foreign forces were behind the protests that took place during their terms.




Read more:
Hong Kong activists now face a choice: stay silent, or flee the city. The world must give them a path to safety


Beijing has already signalled that collusion will be broadly interpreted under the law.

Police have not disclosed the specifics of Lai’s offences, but his July meeting with US Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is likely to be under the microscope, as is an opinion piece he wrote for The New York Times in May.

Lai’s status as an influential media owner and prominent pro-democracy activist has positioned him in Beijing’s crosshairs. He has been the target of extraordinary vitriol from mainland state media and was arrested by Hong Kong police in February and April on charges of participating in an illegal assembly.

Lai’s case is undoubtedly intended to serve as a warning — “killing the chicken to scare the monkey,“ to borrow a Chinese saying — and an inducement for the city’s journalists to self-censor, lest they fall foul of the new law.

For instance, an editorial calling for Hong Kong’s constitutionally guaranteed autonomy to be preserved could be interpreted by a zealous prosecutor as inciting secession under articles 20 and 21 of the law.

Hong Kong’s protests have dwindled since the new security law came into place this year.
Vincent Yu/AP

An uncertain future for independent media

Although self-censorship has long been a concern, Hong Kong has traditionally enjoyed a vibrant free press. In 2002, Reporters Without Borders ranked it 18th in its inaugural World Press Freedom Index.

However, by 2020, the city had plunged to 80th. (China, meanwhile, ranked 177th of 180 countries.) The application of the national security law in Hong Kong will no doubt see the territory’s ranking tumble even further.

Apple Daily’s days appear to be numbered. Similar fates could befall other outspoken independent media, like the crowd-funded Hong Kong Free Press, which launched in 2015 amid rising concerns over declining press freedoms in the city. This was around the same time the South China Morning Post, Hong Kong’s venerable English-language daily, was acquired by the mainland conglomerate Alibaba.




Read more:
China is taking a risk by getting tough on Hong Kong. Now, the US must decide how to respond


Over the years, much of Hong Kong’s media has been bought up by China-owned or -affiliated entities, some of which are ultimately controlled Beijing’s Liaison Office in Hong Kong. More than half of Hong Kong’s media owners are now members of political bodies on the mainland.

The public broadcaster Radio Television Hong Kong has remained editorially independent, but it is under review again, having recently fallen foul of the local regulator for criticising the police handling of pro-democracy protests in a manner that was

irresponsible, and could be regarded as a hate speech with the effect of inciting hatred against the police.

International media still operate in Hong Kong relatively unrestrained, but visa refusals for foreign journalists suggest this is changing.

In recent years, Financial Times editor Victor Mallet’s visa renewal was denied after he chaired a discussion with a pro-independence politician, and New York Times reporter Chris Buckley’s Hong Kong work permit was denied, without any specific reason, months after he was also kicked out of China.

The Times has moved some of its former China- and Hong Kong-based reporters to South Korea and Taiwan in response. However, foreign journalists who engage in critical reporting on China and Hong Kong could be in breach of the national security law regardless of where they are based, as the law applies extraterritorially and to non-Chinese citizens as well as nationals.

Blank Post-it sticky notes have been posted around Hong Kong to protest the breadth of the new national security law.
TYRONE SIU/Reuters

Speaking for the party’s will

China’s constitution purports to preserve freedom of expression. It has never met the promise of its terms. In 2016, President Xi Jinping told the country’s press,

all news media run by the party must work to speak for the party’s will and its propositions and protect the party’s authority and unity.

The guarantees of free speech and a free press under Hong Kong’s Basic Law are now on the same trajectory.

It is unlikely the media in Hong Kong will be nationalised to the extent it is on the mainland. Instead, Beijing is deploying a combination of acquisition, co-optation and intimidation to obtain its compliant silence.The Conversation

Brendan Clift, Teaching Fellow and PhD candidate, University of Melbourne

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Tensions rise on coronavirus handling as the media take control of the accountability narrative


Denis Muller, University of Melbourne

Media coverage of disasters follows a broadly similar trajectory, even though the disasters themselves might take very different forms.

The COVID-19 crisis in Victoria is no exception.

Although it is unfolding over a long time instead of in a single dramatic episode, it is possible to see familiar patterns emerging, and events over the past three weeks indicate that a notable shift has taken place.

From impact and response – which constitute the first two phases of disaster coverage – the focus has broadened to include the blame phase. From a media perspective, this can be called the accountability phase.

This shift can be explained to some extent by a change in political rhetoric. The theme of unity across levels of government and party lines has begun to fracture, particularly with remarks by the federal treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, directed at the Victorian government.

On August 7 he said Victorians deserved answers about “serious failures with deadly consequences” in the state’s coronavirus hotel quarantine system.

However, Frydenberg was only echoing what the media had already started to investigate, and journalists with trusted sources had begun getting leaks.

In mid-July, The Age drew on leaked emails to reveal that a senior bureaucrat in the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions raised the alarm on March 28. Senior people in the Department of Health and Human Services and Emergency Management Victoria were urged to ask Victoria Police to deploy officers to the quarantine hotels.

According to the newspaper, the police were not asked, so no police were sent.

Two months later, the first case was logged of a security guard at Rydges on Swanston testing positive for coronavirus. This cluster grew rapidly to six cases.

Rydges on Swanston hotel in Melbourne.
Rydges on Swanston, used for hotel quarantine, where a coronavirus cluster soon took off.
Scott Barbour/AAP

Even though this startling information was now in the public domain, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews remained focused on impact and response.

When asked what went wrong with hotel quarantine, he would say only that he was ultimately responsible and that retired judge Jennifer Coate’s inquiry would provide the answers. Meantime, he would not be running a commentary on it.

Victorian Health Minister Jenny Mikakos took the same line in state parliament on August 4. She later tweeted, though, that she was “deeply sorry” if her efforts had not been enough.

“Let the cards fall where they may”, she said, referring to the inquiry.

Principled though this is, it shows the government has not sufficiently appreciated that the trajectory of the coverage has undergone that important shift, from impact and response to accountability.

Coate has herself licensed public debate about these matters.

In failing to respond to repeated questions both in parliament and at the premier’s daily media briefings, the government has lost control of the accountability narrative.

A report in The Age and Sydney Morning Herald on August 8 rammed home this point.

It stated that the executive director of employment in the Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions had been removed from their role over the quarantine bungle.

It went on to describe a well-intentioned, if misguided, decision to engage a company called Unified Security in the hotel quarantine operation. Unified was reported to have satisfied the criteria for receiving contracts under the government’s social inclusion procurement policy.

Moreover, the government’s international trade agency, Global Victoria, with no obvious experience in security or public health, reportedly also had a role in establishing the quarantine arrangements.

Even before these revelations, frustration was building among reporters at the government’s refusal to engage on the issue of accountability.

At Andrews’ daily briefing on August 6, a reporter from The Australian, Rachel Baxendale, pressed the premier for answers.

The upshot was that Baxendale, who was only doing her job, became the completely undeserving target of a stream of online hatred, including death threats.

This response suggests several things.

First, some people have a sociopathic problem with strong women in the media who try to hold powerful men to account. We saw it recently with a similar attack on the ABC’s Leigh Sales after she had interviewed the prime minister on the 7.30 program.




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Leigh Sales showed us the abuse women cop online. When are we going to stop tolerating misogyny?


Second, Daniel Andrews may retain considerable support in the wider community for fronting up every day to tell unwelcome truths.

It stands in sharp contrast to the crass name-calling indulged in by Liberal MP Tim Smith, which has undermined the efforts of his leader, Michael O’Brien, to offer constructive proposals for economic recovery.

Third, the public may still be very much absorbed in the impact and response phases of the disaster and not ready to move on to the accountability phase.

This is sometimes difficult for the media to judge.

In the aftermath of the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires, the Victorian media were noticeably slower to get into the accountability phase than were the national and interstate media.

Victoria-based journalists and editors said that, in covering a disaster close to home, it was important not to get into the blame game while the community to whom they were publishing was still acutely anxious and grieving.

With an ongoing disaster, this judgment becomes even more delicate.

However, a second line of inquiry in pursuit of accountability that might be more in tune with community sentiment is open to the media: what went wrong in privately run nursing homes, for which the federal government is responsible?

Minister for Aged Care Richard Colbeck has not been giving daily briefings. Some close questioning of him might be in order, with less risk of public blow-back.The Conversation

Denis Muller, Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of Melbourne

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.