Australian news, and some related international items

Rupert Murdoch’s secret attack on Australia’s ABC

In hours, Murdoch could secure his stranglehold on the Australian media by acquiring our public international TV news network — and rob a struggling ABC of $223 million in funding. Communications Minister Stephen Conroy is under pressure to give control over the network to Murdoch instead of the ABC — but together we can stop the deal.

 we desperately need to come together again. Murdoch’s mouthpiece The Australian has been leaking details of insider support for Murdoch in a blatant attempt to force Labor into backing his bid. Conroy knows that giving the network to Murdoch would greatly increase the media mogul’s corrupting influence and hurt the ABC, and is looking for a way out.

Together, we can give Conroy the public mandate he needs to reject Murdoch’s power grab and award the contract to the ABC. Send a message to Conroy telling him that Australians don’t want this dodgy deal — click on the link below and then forward to everyone:

Rupert Murdoch already owns 70 percent of Australia’s newspapers. Now he’s on the hunt for more media control, and he’s hoping we won’t notice. Through his stake in Australian News Channel, he’s been pushing hard to take over the crucial but low-key ‘Australia Network’: an Australian international public broadcaster that’s available in 44 countries. Murdoch has shown that his empire ruthlessly puts profits above all else — even hacking a murdered school girl’s phone to increase sales. With this extra network, Murdoch would vastly increase his power and take control of Australia’s public image abroad. 

The move is also a key part of his strategy to destroy public broadcasting and silence independent voices. Murdoch knows that the loss of $223 million in funding would severely weaken an already stretched ABC. It would mean the loss of many ABC journalists, and potential closures of overseas news offices. If we let Murdoch win, Australia will become the first country in the world to privatise its international news service.

Insiders say Communications Minister Stephen Conroy doesn’t want this outcome. He’s looking for a way to keep the money with the ABC and stop Murdoch from further increasing his corrupting influence. If huge numbers of Australians send messages, Conroy will receive the public backing he needs to decide against Murdoch’s bid. Send your message now and forward this note to your friends and family:

Earlier this year, Avaaz members in the UK forced Murdoch to drop his bid for a complete takeover of British broadcaster BSkyB, and last month we won the media inquiry here despite Murdoch’s fierce opposition. Now we have a chance to win again. With massive public support, we can rid the world of Murdoch’s corrupting influence for good. Something that would have been unthinkable even 12 months ago is now within our grasp, if we keep working together.

With hope,
Emma, Ben, Ari, Luis, Ricken, Alice and the rest of the Avaaz team


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October 31, 2011 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, media

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