Of course it matters who ‘owns’ the media. However, it’s a lot more complicated than one simple answer or a matter of only one entity owning the media as a whole.
Immediately, I think of the Murdochs (all of them), Gina Rinehart, James Packer and so on. What defines the media though?
Basically, it is a range of mediums used to communicate on a mass scale. The idea of mass communication, made possible through television, radio, newspapers and THE INTERNET.
Many of the large corporations have pieces of numerous pies, creating quite the crumble (so to speak). As highlighted in SBS’ Ricardo’s Business, it is a ‘tangled web’ as shares grow and change constantly with different trends. Rupert Murdoch’s piece of the pie is a big one, he has many types of pie. Okay, perhaps this analogy isn’t working.
Basically, Rupert Murdoch exceeds anyone’s expectation of ‘boss mentality’. Murdoch is in ownership of Australia’s largest leading media company, News Corp Australia. News Corp Australia is in control of approximately one hundred and forty two newspapers including The Daily Telegraph and The Australian and at least thirty magazine titles across Australia, including Vogue. Murdoch has placed no restrictions to just ‘legacy’ media but also online media with interests in news.com.au, taste.com.au and homelife.com.au. Television, another interest of Murdoch’s as he owns fifty per cent of Foxtel, an extremely popular network provider in Australia. You would think he has picked at all the pieces of ‘the media pie’ but no, Rupert Murdoch has too invested in 21st Century Fox. So movies, too! With such a global presence, it’s difficult to compare Murdoch to anyone else.
Although, there is also Gina Rinehart, a multi-billionaire who is linked to mining and media, a strange concoction but works for her with the label of “the richest woman in Australia”. Since 2010, Rinehart has invested in the Ten Network and also has established a sense of control over Fairfax Media. Fairfax Media consists of digital, print and radio, ranging from The Sydney Morning Herald to your Daily Weather mobile app. It controls media platforms both in Australia, rurally and in metropolitan areas as well as in New Zealand.
It becomes a battle of News Corp versus Fairfax Media or Rinehart versus the Murdochs or even the Packers. The large companies always have an agenda whether it’s political, social or cultural, agendas exist. We must ask the question of bias, who is constructing our news?
My suggestion is – be aware of what you’re watching and who owns it. All we can do is hope that the ‘media moguls’ remember morality whilst eating their pie (tip: watch ABC or SBS if worried).
Goncalves R, 2012, Factbox: Who owns what in the Australian Media, News, SBS, viewed 27 March 2016 <http://www.sbs.com.au/news/article/2012/06/22/factbox-who-owns-what-australian-media>
Lamb B, 2013, Australian Media Ownership, Media in Minutes on the Lesson Bucket, viewed 27 March 2016 <http://lessonbucket.com/category/media-in-minutes/>
Note: Feel free to click on each image for a link to where I found it!