Julia Gillard is up for The Australian’s Australian of the Year prize. And other media tidbits.
I’m not a climate scientist but … News Corp boss Rupert Murdoch — who proudly announced in 2010 that his media empire had become carbon neutral — has taken to Twitter to claim that increased carbon emissions are making the world “greener”.
This followed an earlier tweet this morning in which the mogul questioned government investment in renewable energy projects.
The Oz cozying up to the PM? Julia Gillard was no doubt chuffed to open her copy of The Australian this morning and discover she is in the running to be named the paper’s Australian of the Year — a title, most would agree, rivalled for prestige only by being named the actual Australian of the Year. It is, after all, judged by a panel of the broadsheet’s “senior editors”.
In a touching profile penned by chief political correspondent Sid Maher, The Oz informs us that Gillard deserves credit for passing the carbon tax, winning Australia a spot on the UN Security Council and delivering her famous misogyny speech to federal parliament. According to Maher, Gillard’s “resilience, endurance and determination in the face of adversity make her a worthy nominee for this newspaper’s Australian of the Year”. The praise will come as a surprise to many Labor MPs who complain that the paper has been unfairly critical of the government.
The Oz gave Kevin Rudd the gong in 2010 after attacking the government relentlessly during 2009 for its handling of the Global Financial Crisis. Rudd, according to Sally Neighbour’s profile of Chris Mitchell in The Monthly, was so peeved by the paper’s chutzpah that he refused to pose for a photo. We wonder if Gillard will be more magnanimous if she wins the gong which will be announced on January 19. — Matthew Knott
Print hacks an endangered species. The newspaper industry has shed almost 13% of its workforce over the past five years, bucking the trend of rising employment in cultural industries. There were 5510 print journalists employed in 2011 compared to 6306 in 2006, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics late last month. This means the print media sector, which grew in the 2001 and 2006 ABS surveys, has fewer employees than 15 years ago. The number of print journos can be expected to drop further given the heavy redundancy rounds last year that saw around 1000 journalists leave the industry.
The number of radio journalists and presenters fell slightly to 2567 while the ranks of TV presenters and journos rose to 1523. There were 2275 people working in internet publishing and broadcasting, a 96% increase since 2006. There are more female than male print, TV and radio journalists, but when it comes to on-air TV and radio roles, the media remains a sausage fest. Male radio announcers outnumber women by 3:1 and there are more male TV presenters.
The growing sector of graphic design was the biggest cultural employer in 2011 with 25,513 workers. — Matthew Knott
Front page of the day. Hobart’s Mercury reports on fears that the bushfires ablaze in Tasmania may have led to deaths.