Michael Pascoe writes:

Even by News Corp standards, the Murdoch
press’s “news” pages are awash with advertorial today as the hacks do the
master’s bidding promoting Rupert’s MySpace launch. Yet the editors of the Oz,
Hun et al should be worried – they’re just not keeping up with the pace set by Sydney’s Terror.

The big MySpace “story” is only the start of the barrow push. There’s also space in the Terror‘s editorial
for a MySpace plug, including the memorable claim that the “Daily Telegraph
reveals” something about Rupert’s internet play. Running internal PR missives
is hardly “revealing”.

Then there is some guff about the NSW
Government selecting News Ltd as its tourism promotion media partner – which
might have conspiracy buffs running in two directions: Could this be part of a
Premier Dilemma plot to get the Terror back onside ahead of the March election?
Or is there something in the deal that could involve giving away newspapers to
lift circulation figures? Maybe both tracks meet up…

But the crowning glory is the Tele‘s
coverage of SMH police reporter and alleged firearm fan Stephen Gibbs fronting
court in relation to claims he pulled a gun on a Terror sub-editor. “Gun Herald
journo’s day in court
” says the headline, but what’s missing from the website version is the
strapper underneath it complimenting Gibbs on his taste in newspapers, as the
third paragraph explains: “The experienced police reporter,
who is still employed by The Sydney Morning Herald, arrived at Downing Centre Local Court clutching a copy of The Daily
Telegraph
.”

If they had thought about it a moment
longer, the Murdoch subs might have realised that their paper is just the
reading matter you’d expect for someone facing criminal charges.

Roll on the media ownership changes – we
just don’t have enough of this.

Peter Fray

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