Thursday, June 30, 2005

The Disappearing Controversy Trick

MelbournePhilosopher

I'm a regular reader of "The Age", a Murdoch paper here in Melbourne, Aus. Despite its political leanings, I find it to be the best of the bunch for online reading, in terms of what content is free, quality of articles etc.

Around lunchtime, I read with interest the following article, still available from their archives : Tens of thousands march against IR changes

Now, at ten past two, the story has vanished entirely, with not a trace of it present on the front page. Instead of a government-critical rally involving hundreds of thousands of Australians protesting to defend what many see as very basic workplace rights, the top three articles are currently: "Couple feared lost in floods", "Travel agent convicted of dishonesty" and "Labor concerned over Centrelink crackdown".

The story has *also* been removed from the "breaking stories" page, which appears to list every addition to the online paper chronologically.

MP wonders what is happening over that "The Age", and what motivations caused the removal of this fascinating article.

Cheers,
-MP

6 Comments:

Blogger MelbournePhilosopher said...

3pm. Looks like it's back again now. I doubt it was my savvy blog post which caused its re-appearance though.

-MP

6/30/2005 03:17:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am sorry, it's not savvy, The Age is a Fairfax newspaper. Although Murdoch has no doubt wanted to buy it for some time he has not and cannot due to cross-media ownership laws.

Murdoch's primary paper (the other holdings are rags) is the right-wing The Australian which is notorious for hiring political hacks like Janet Albrechtsen who have no value as journalists at all.

As of the time of this posting the only string matching "protest" on the front page of The Australian is a crappy link to a story about the rally in NSW tomorrow.

You are correct about The Age being the best reading on many aussie issues, but that actually isn't saying much. The Age has a whole load of old political war horses like Mitchel Grattan who are so tired and boring it has been proven that 5 people have committed suicide and another 8 killed puppies after reading her work.

The indymedia coverage is a good example of why all these newspapers are going to die. The Australian didn't even cover the fact 0.5% of the entire population took to the streets, and The Age was ok with like three articles, some pictures and a video. But the pictures on Indymedia are better IMO, the video is heaps better, and the articles will only improve as more and more blogs licence under creative commons and can be used as point/counter-point on the front page.

While there is a high quotient of "indykids" being generally immature and ill-informed with their socialist-cult groupthink or mind numbingly boring anarchist red-baiting antics there will no doubt be an influx of good content sooner or later as people realise that: to discuss politics, you can't have your main content producers on the payroll of a corporation. Pretty simple really.

7/01/2005 01:07:00 AM  
Blogger MelbournePhilosopher said...

While I did suffer a moment of irritation at being exposed for un-savviness, I must say thanks very much for your factual corrections. I thought it was The Australian that was Fairfax... Hopefully the universe will see fit to forgive me for the slip-up.

Given free access, I'd probably end up reading the Financial Review, but it's a subscription site.

I think the indymedia coverage is a good example of why all these newspapers *should* die, but I'm not convinced that mere quality is enough to overcome the fearsome duo of money and marketing.

Cheers,
-MP

7/01/2005 10:08:00 AM  
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