Giant media moguls own our news networks from domestic well-known individuals like Rupert Murdoch to more shadowy international owners like Sheldon Adelson. It is due to these moguls existence that knowing who owns the news and media you consume is so important. It all comes down to agendas, Rupert Murdoch has a well-documented history of interest in the political affairs of Australia leaders, just see Kevin Rudd’s accusations that he used his media businesses to ‘run vendettas against him’ (Rudd, 2013). So his agenda could be perceived to be seen as a potentially powerful political ally, of which the prize is often deregulation of whichever business field members happen to be a part of. Political power is clearly a reason for media ownership, but a more local reason also exists, a favorable portrayal in one’s own community.
Sheldon Adelson, a Los Vegas Casino owner, in the year 2015, secretly bought the Los Vegas Review-Journal. He also allegedly introduced a “review process” (Wright, 2016) to specially review articles that have his companies mentioned within them. This could be used potentially to change aspects of the article, thereby removing the objectivity, a definite abuse of ownership and flagrant misrepresentation of news, or it could not be, with no definite evidence of corruption we may never truly know, but what is scary to consumers is that this information is much like information found on Wikipedia, it can be changed to better suit an individual needs rather than directly reflect the truth.
So far the Agenda based influence has affected the potential truthfulness of the news and the reasoning behind certain reporting, So it time to get to good old-fashioned corporate greed. John Oliver, in his report on Journalism, shows a video of Sam Zell after buying the Tribune, an American media platform, stating that in order to make the money necessary to afford everyone he needed them to do more and more fluff pieces resulting in the words, “journalistic arrogance” (Zell, 1997) when a reporter asked about their duty to inform the public about international events like the Iraq war. Now or news is being coloured by the greed of a corporate player, removing quality in favor of quantity.
So with exception to government-run media stations, news and media are often controlled by third-party corporate giants with agenda’s that are clear attempts to curry favor with political parties, change local public opinion on an individuals image and squash important stores in the name of greed and financial incentives.
This matters, because with this level of agenda based reporting we, as an audience are robbed of what journalism is truly about, an informed opinion on popular and controversial topics. this is why I personally get my news from a reputable self-run independent source, who promotes conversation rather than cemented fact allowing for a collage of opinions to assist in the creation of my own, thing the community element of shows like the Philip Defranco Show, who rely on basic product advertising and Youtube revenue to make all the money they need to operate eliminating the need for agenda based reporting.
- ABC News. (2018). Objective reporting: It has never been more necessary. [online] Available at: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-09-10/sunderland-objective-reporting-has-never-been-more-necessary/6764320 [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].
- ABC News. (2018). Your say: Rudd vs News Corp. [online] Available at: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-08/your-say-murdoch-accused-of-orchestrating-anti-rudd-campaign/4872682 [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].
- Ember, R. (2018). Having Owned Up to Buying Newspaper, Adelsons Go Silent. [online] Nytimes.com. Available at: https://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/18/business/media/sheldon-adelson-casino-magnate-is-buyer-of-las-vegas-review-journal.html [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].
- Forbes.com. (2018). Forbes Welcome. [online] Available at: https://www.forbes.com/profile/sheldon-adelson/ [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].
- Forbes.com. (2018). Forbes Welcome. [online] Available at: https://www.forbes.com/profile/rupert-murdoch/ [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].
- Work.chron.com. (2018). Duties & Responsibilities of Journalists. [online] Available at: http://work.chron.com/duties-responsibilities-journalists-13252.html [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].
- YouTube. (2018). Journalism: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO). [online] Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bq2_wSsDwkQ [Accessed 2 Apr. 2018].