Coverage makes cents

If you doubt money and commercial interests play a role in editorial coverage, just take a look at the pages of Rupert’s morning Brisbane turdbloid The Courier-Mail.

Every day of the current state election campaign the daily LNP how-to-vote card has…. oops, sorry, we meant to say that every day of the current state election campaign the daily newspaper has run several pages of stories from the campaign trail badged rather benignly as “Queensland Election 2020”.

But on the opposite page each day the words “Subscribe before you decide”. (main picture)

In addition the paper has continued to run numerous ads for the News Corp-related Sky News and its team of independent commentators who’ll be analysing the results with unbiased…….

Sorry, we trailed off there while typing that last line in a fit of hysterics. It was meant to make the point that the revenue base of The Courier-Mail and other News Corp outlets these days appears to be built in part at least on ads from other News Corp outlets, ie: paper transactions adding zero to their obviously ever-shrinking bottom line.

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It is interesting that a publication which just days ago used its front page to call on all parties involved in the Queensland election to “tell the truth” (pictured) has continued to accept paid advertisements peddling a blatant lie.

Of course we refer to the ads being run in News Corp newspapers in Queensland (ie: just about any newspaper in the state) by Clive Palmer’s misnamed United Australia Party claiming a re-elected Labor government will introduce a death tax.

Under pressure, the UAP ads momentarily added “could” but soon reverted to Mrs
Palmer shouting the tax was inevitable.

Nobody believes it is true, even those writing for the News Corp outlets concerned. Yet the ads have run daily throughout the campaign.

But let’s cut the poor folks at News Corp some slack.

If your organisation was in terminal decline, losing paying customers at a huge rate of knots, and alienating existing and potential customers through its own editorial policies and actions, you too would be grasping at any revenue source with both hands.

Commercial interest trumps journalistic integrity yet again at Rupert’s place – something audiences here and abroad know only too well.

In fact maybe when it comes to the US media market and Murdoch-run outlets such as Fox News that should be commercial interests Trump journalistic integrity.

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Readers will be interested, but not surprised, to learn that Murdoch’s national broadshit The Australian hasn’t broken ranks when it comes to its editorial policy on the Queensland election.

Today it published a 1,400-word diatribe that attempted to justify the need to change government in the Sunshine State. (pictured)

As a piece of writing it is well worth reading, for its comedic logic if nothing else.

But its Paul Kellyesque length has us worried.

As serious citizens of the world, especially as ones who see the need to husband our precious natural resources, those of us here at The Bug can’t help feel that the waste of paper – literally – involved in running such a lengthy editorial over the dozens, perhaps scores of copies the paper sells across the nation is a waste of trees and energy in the production process.

Surely they didn’t need 1,400 words. A short and simple editorial saying “Vote LNP” matching their previous campaign coverage would have done.