The Business of Anger

Posted 3 CommentsPosted in Business Models, Opinion, Talkback

A perennial tension in journalism arises from balancing the professional requirement to accurately inform the public and the commercial one to actively engage them. The destruction of media business models, where classified advertising subsidised across a Chinese wall the quality journalism that attracted the eyeballs, has gradually swung that balance from the professional to the commercial imperatives.

The Mates’ Media

Posted 29 CommentsPosted in Gender, Political News, Talkback

Ask any New Zealander living in Australia, and you’ll hear how we learn to shrug off  lame  jokes about “fush’n’chups” and sheep bothering. What we rarely point out  in return is that Australians, for all their relative wealth, have  an unevolved appreciation of women in power. This blogger spent a week in his native NZ the week before last, attending a funeral of a loved aunt who had a […]

Who Protects Us From Stupid?

Posted 29 CommentsPosted in Broadcasting, Entertainment News, Ethical Standards, Government Policy and Regulation, Sales and Circulation, Talkback

It was a bit of fun that flouted the rules, says Jonathon Holmes. The outrage is another example of nanny statism by meddling lefties, says Tim Blair. Yes, yes.  But has anyone considered that the now infamous hoax call to Kate Middleton merely confirmed (yet again)  the utter stupidity of our media and the people who mindlessly consume it? Clearly, there has always been a substantial commercial market for […]

Talking Back to the Wireless

Posted 23 CommentsPosted in Craft Standards, Government Policy and Regulation, Opinion, Talkback

A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, people would sit in their lounge-rooms listening to the news on the wireless. The rounded and reassuring tones of a voice-of-god announcer would interpret for eager audiences the messy events of the world in neat packages. The yearning for that distant-yet-familiar authority figure/’expert’ lives on today in the aging audience for shockjocks like Alan Jones. This is a […]

Old Angry Men

Posted 28 CommentsPosted in Opinion, Talkback

Call it the Grumpy Old Man business model. At a time when our busted mainstream media are axing the jobs of hundreds of hard-working journalists, the market for menopausal male misogynists in print and broadcasting remains stronger than ever. Why? With a nod to our new ideological overlords of the IPA, it seems the market has spoken. What Australia wants from its media is not The Truth, but something […]

The Elephant Men

Posted 7 CommentsPosted in Ethical Standards, Gender, Government Policy and Regulation, Opinion, Sales and Circulation, Talkback

 “The world is a business, Mr. Beale; it has been since man crawled out of the slime. Our children will live, Mr. Beale, to see that perfect world in which there’s no war or famine, oppression or brutality – one vast and ecumenical holding company, for whom all men will work to serve a common profit, in which all men will hold a share of stock – all necessities […]

The Outrage Business

Posted 22 CommentsPosted in ABC, Business Models, Media Business, News Corp, Opinion, Talkback

As in drama, conflict drives the news business. The more black and white the conflict is portrayed as, the greater the passion the issue raises, the greater its confected ‘news’ value. Once a savvy media organisation works out what gets people worked up, it’s a fair bet it will go out of its way to construct narratives around those very issues.

Hitting Them Where it Hurts

Posted 12 CommentsPosted in Advertising, Ethical Standards, Opinion, Radio, Talkback

The previous post Radio Ga Ga looked at the ever deteriorating standards in Australian talkback radio – including inciting racial hate and prejuidice, cash for comment, distortion, lies, breaches of the rules of contempt and a general absence of any respect for the ethics of journalism.

Radio Ga Ga

Posted 24 CommentsPosted in Craft Standards, Government Policy and Regulation, Opinion, Radio, Talkback

As people marvel at the immediacy of news via the internet, it is easy to overlook the fact that old fashioned steam radio has been doing this for 70 years or more. The words come out of the announcer’s mouth and they are worming into listeners’ ears in real time. And therein lie the potential problems.

Instant Controversy

Posted 19 CommentsPosted in ABC, Political News, Talkback

Anyone notice how the media dubbed the proposed flood levy the “controversial” flood levy almost immediately as it was announced? Given a controversial issue is normally defined as a public matter in which there are strongly entrenched opposing opinions, the instant nature of this controversy raises suspicion. A clue was given in in the AFR this weekend, where Geoff  Kitney quoted a senior government minister as saying the initial […]