Sep 13, 2010

New political reporting … it’s facts, not fads, that really matter

So what might a new paradigm of political reporting look like? For one thing, it would involve a revival of the old paradigm -- that facts matter and it is a journalists’ job to dig them out.

Margaret Simons

Journalist, author and director of the Centre for Advanced Journalism

The media is full of the media this morning.

Specifically whether or not The Australian is biased, whether Laura Tingle is a Ruddite, and whether Andrew Wilkie  and Victorian Attorney-General Rob Hulls will succeed in giving legal recognition to journalists’ obligations to protect their confidential sources.

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25 thoughts on “New political reporting … it’s facts, not fads, that really matter

  1. shepherdmarilyn

    Anthony Klan knew very well that their so-called whistle blower was a crook but self-righteously informed me that they were trying to stop future waste – by lying about the BER which they know very well has been a great success except for a tiny number of complaints.

    What on earth their problem is is beyond me but Ferrari started it with dopey, unproven whines and then Stutchbury chimed in with stories of money “wasted” when it was not even allocated.

    Their continued use of Craig Mayne was absurd, it was the Australian themselves who showed that his main goal was to rip off and embarrass the QLD government and as Crikey showed he had no connection to any building programs or projects after 1986.

    Some schools parent bodies seem to have decided they own the damn schools and tried to dictate the rules but the reality is that taxpayers own the schools.

    I have not seen millions of taxpayers in the streets whining about the BER, has anyone else.

  2. Jimmy

    I find it weird logic that the Australian defends itself by saying it was right on the insulation scheme & the BER when the only reason they were right was that they said so with such force and so often that people started to believe them even after reports showed that they were wrong. Even when reporting on the BER report showing a small and accepted error rate the Australian claimed it was proof positive of their prosecutions.
    ” A reader consuming only the Fairfax press, he said, would have trouble understanding why the Rudd Government was doing badly in the polls.” – well when the main reason was the constant attacks and fabrications coming from the Murdoch press it would have been little wonder.

  3. Delerious

    Dear God Margaret the editorials on election eve for news ltd did not split down the middle they all promoted the coalition and demonised labor.

    Rupert made a lovely speech several years ago that opinion IS news so most of his papers reflect this artificial concept of what news is. You probably haven’t seen proper newspapers, go to NZ on a ski trip and look at every one of their newspapers. They provided news and it was refreshing. We don’t have that luxury here in Australia as every state has a Rupert owned newspaper as either the only newspaper or one of the primary newspapers.

    News Ltd pushed news, its version of the news and only its version of the news. It lies, it distorts and is untrustworthy so we look other places for the news and when they pick up news ltd stuff and run with it we can see it immediately.

  4. Delerious

    Good article btw. Helps clarify things.

  5. Pete from Sydney

    PS Margaret, media is self obsessed across the board, not just peculiar to the Oz…

  6. Meski

    Hubris, “It must be right because we say so”

  7. David Hand

    “One-eyed, so self-obsessed, so self-righteous, that even when it is right, one distrusts the facts on which the conclusions are based.” Yep – a perfect description of Crikey and the inhabitants of the comments sections.

  8. jeffb

    David, note how the article gives examples of the coverage from The Australian it finds flawed? Perhaps you could try the same.

    Do you actually have something to add on subject or are you merely trying to derail the conversation?

  9. Salamander

    What has the world come to in 2010 when it is possible to write a serious article arguing the notion that “facts matter”.

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