Rupert rejects our question

In our Media Glass House column last Sunday we mentioned coverage in News Corp Australia outlets of the company’s move into yet another money-making venture, this time the online gambling market.

In one of the stories about the new online betting joint venture Rupert Murdoch’s company has joined we noted a paragraph (below) that baldly stated the fact that it would be using its existing media outlets to promote the new business.

We questioned whether that meant any coverage would be given in the future to stories about the negative impacts of gambling, and in particular online gambling that appears to be one of our nation’s few growth industries, if the advertising campaigns by the multiplicity of players already operating in the market are anything to go by.

Well, we are pleased – or maybe not, actually – to advise our reader that our question has been answered.

You see, following the publication of our previous MGH one of our researchers spied in the Murdoch-owned national broadshit The Australian an op-ed by columnist Katrina Grace Kelly (below) who discusses her own experience and that of other individuals of betting on election outcomes.

Ms Kelly leads off her column with this observation: “The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare says Australian gamblers lost about $25bn in 2018-19, representing the largest per capita losses in the world.”

What an opportunity, thought our MGH researcher, to pose a very polite question about the future intentions of the Murdoch empire re coverage of gambling.

So our researcher went online and sought to add to the comment section following Ms Kelly’s column an innocent comment containing a relevant question. (below)

As you can see that was just after 8.30am on Sunday and the comment was left in the “pending” state prior to what our researcher felt was its inevitable approval for publication in the list of comments on Ms Kelly’s column.

But alas, on checking back a few hours later our researcher found dozens of comments on Ms Kelly’s column. But not theirs.

A check of their online subscriber account revealed the fate of their comment. (below)

A quick check of the rules for commenting on stories in The Oz revealed little to justify such rejection. Even criticisms of News Corp itself is permitted as long as it’s not all a reader contributes or unless such attacks are  contributed regularly just to be a pest. (below) Fair enough, but we don’t think our researcher’s comment falls anywhere near that category.

So, dear reader, we do have an answer to the question we posed on Sunday about News Corp’s intentions in relation to future coverage of gambling issues.

Sadly, it is the answer we suspected we would receive all along.