Online hits or online shit?

media dinkus

Your ABC is the regular target for attacks from News Corp Australia which still pretends to be a source of fair and balanced news in this nation.

Of course everyone knows the motivation behind the regular and often petty stories critical of our national broadcaster that appear in print in the few remaining hard-copy papers and the online sites operated under the control of the octogenarian, right-wing American, Rupert Murdoch.

It’s all about money, as usual when it comes to Rupert. He and his underlings can’t stand the thought that the ABC is a free service when he and his many companies could be getting paid to deliver the same news to Australian audiences.

So let’s have a quick look at what type of “news” we all might expect if Rupert had his way.

Take for instance the section of the News Corp website devoted to “lifestyle news”.

Yesterday one of the lead “news” stories in the lifestyle section was headlined “Bunnings brings back popular $7 item”. If you clicked through to read it you would have found out that, yes, the hardware giant (and major advertiser with News Corp) was returning to its shelves a $6.99 17-piece plastic food container set.

The story came complete with descriptions of the product plus testimonials from readers who were so happy at the news and who were willing to share their experiences with plastic food storage sets.

In the past week or so since our media analysis team has been keeping an eye on the lifestyle “news” section of the News Corp website, we’ve seen many similar stories.

The headlines of these stories all appearing as “news” have included:

  • Coles has launched a new $12 ‘Mexican-inspired’ roast chook
  • Bunnings releases new collectible seed, plants range for kids
  • Coles and Aldi release air fryer ovens with new feature – but one is $20 cheaper
  • Woolworths marks Meat Free Week with new ‘luxury’ plant-based $8 product

Those are just a small sample of the clickbait and blatant ads masquerading as “news” stories in the lifestyle section of this mighty media organisation.

Surely it’s just a coincidence that they involve plugs for products marketed by regular News Corp advertisers?

We’re not sure how many will be nominated for a Walkley Award, but we’re sure some will win the in-house News Corp gongs that old Rupert started to dish out a few years back because the real awards were for some reason bypassing his scribes.

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1wooliescheeseSpeaking of major advertisers, we think that in the midst of the global Black Lives Matter protests that right now is probably not the best time for supermarket chain Woolworths to feature the latest special price on offer for Coon cheese.

But there it is today (pictured right) as part of a double-page spread in News Corp papers.

Can someone tell me in which aisle Woolies stocks tin ears?

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Our media analysis team here at The Bug have the utmost respect for the honourable profession/trade/craft of journalism.

1ozstars110720It has certainly thrown up, and on occasion quite literally, many great reporters who have gone on to become household names.

But would the description “stars” apply to any of them?

The Australian today (pictured at left) had no hesitation in applying the Hollywoodesque label to several of its staffers who have been engaged or reshuffled into various posts in its editorial team.

Hmmm, seems a tad too lightweight and egotistical to us. But, then again…..