Targeting the Deathstar

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There’s an fascinating thread over at Larvatus Prodeo about Laura Tingle’s Friday column in the AFR in which she revealed Labor strategists are now seriously contemplating how to deal with the ferocious campaign against the new government’s legitimacy by the Murdoch empire. (For those who missed the AFR column, a PDF version is available for download here.) Suggestions on the LP thread range from dangerously undemocratic revenge fantasies in […]

‘Dog Bites Man’ Journalism

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Annabel Crabb, the charming and witty ABC colour writer, has penned a sort of mea culpa on behalf of the Press Gallery, saying the new climate of continuous disagreement in Canberra will force the media to reinvent its tired ‘he said-she said’ template. This is the world in which journalists, starved of newsworthy stories by the increasing blandness of politics, pounce on every contradiction or “gaffe” or “backflip” or […]

$kin in the Game

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During the two-weeks of negotiation after the federal election, The Australian’s resident political editor Denis Shanahan published an astonishing piece in which he told his readers that the nation should “forget the three amigos and go back to the polls”. Accusing the country independents of blackmail and cynically using claims of a new paradigm in politics to feather their own electoral nests, Shanahan promoted a view (dutifully echoed by […]

The Tyranny of Constant Publication

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One frequently cited condition of post-modernity is a growing sense of fragmentation and a compression of time and space. In media, this sensation is felt through new technology that allows constant publication. In this new environment, the traditional journalistic concept of “deadlines” now seems quaint, with even Laurie Oakes twittering second-by-second updates from doorstops. For those of us brought up in the wire services (where our lives were ruled […]

Change the Media; Change the Culture

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Australia’s 2010 federal election showed up the bankruptcy of our two-party system in its capacity to deal with political challenges such as sustainability, climate change and our economic dependence on non-renewable resources. More importantly, the election exposed the cosy relationship between the major political parties and an economically imperilled media dependent on manufactured conflict and tired he said-she said narratives to attract ears and eyeballs to its clients’ paid […]

What’s Wrong? Ask the Journalists

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There’s much wailing and gnashing of dentures in the blogosphere at the moment on the state of the media and the quality of journalism. So it’s useful to actually ask what the practitioners are saying about their craft. In this editorial in the industry magazine, The Walkley, Media Alliance federal secretary Christopher Warren paints a favourable picture of the commercial fortunes of the local media, at least in comparison […]