The Australian Senate have confirmed an inquiry into influence and monopoly of the Murdoch media after ex-Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s petition gained half a million signatures.
Thanks to a petition started by Kevin ’07 himself, an inquiry will be launched into Australia’s media diversity and the dominance of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp.
The former Prime Minister launched the petition on October 10, gaining half a million signatures and leading to Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young bringing the motion before the Senate.
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp owns media heavyweights across the globe, including The New York Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Times (UK), and The Sun. Within Australia, the corporation owns newspapers and television networks in nearly every major city, such as The Australian, The Herald Sun, and The Daily Telegraph. Just for context, Murdoch also owns America’s infamous Fox News as a separate venture and is a known friend of ex-President Donald Trump. Problematic, we know.
Although the Australian Senate’s inquiry will allow senators to investigate the claims within Rudd’s petition, many are worried that the results will be influenced by each Senator’s own relationship with News Corp.
Despite this, Senator Hanson-Young remained positive, tweeting, “Breaking: The Senate has agreed to establish an Inquiry into media diversity following the record breaking petition promoted by @MrKRudd.
Australians have become increasingly concerned about the concentration of media ownership and the power and political influence of Murdoch.”
Breaking: The Senate has agreed to establish an Inquiry into media diversity following the record breaking petition promoted by @MrKRudd.
Australians have become increasingly concerned about the concentration of media ownership and the power and political influence of Murdoch.
— 💚🌏 Sarah Hanson-Young (@sarahinthesen8) November 11, 2020
In his petition, Rudd claimed that Murdoch was using his monopoly on the Australian news industry to: “attack opponents in business and politics by blending editorial opinion with news reporting.”
Rudd has also received support from former Liberal Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who fell victim to the Murdoch media during the 2018 Liberal Party coup that ousted him from his role as Prime Minister.
Both Rudd and Turnbull will be called to give evidence at the Senate inquiry to showcase how News Corp’s media dominance is impacting Australian democracy.