Rush, Nixon back Age staff. As foreshadowed by Crikey last week, prominent Victorians have signed a letter supporting The Age’s charter of editorial independence — a move designed to head off any attempts by Gina Rinehart to influence the paper’s content. Among the stand-out names on the list are Australian of the Year Geoffrey Rush, former top cop Christine Nixon, Anglican archbishop Philip Freier, ex-foreign minister Gareth Evans, former premier Steve Bracks and biologist Gustav Nossal.

Meanwhile, we’re assured by anxious Sydney Morning Herald staffers they’re planning something similar — apparently in televisual form. — Matthew Knott

Front Page of the Day. The Washington Post today covers the Egyptian elections and has a wonderful photograph to accompany it:

The Department of Corrections. The problem with analysing census data is that there are just so many darn numbers. From today’s Sydney Morning Herald:

Rinehart threatens to dump Fairfax shares

“Mining billionaire Gina Rinehart has threatened to dump her stake in Fairfax Media if ‘unsuitable conditions’ over non-involvement in the company’s editorial direction are not removed.” — mUmBRELLA

Vatican hires former Fox News reporter

“The Vatican has hired an American journalist as its senior communications adviser amidst the latest scandal to mar Pope Benedict XVI’s papacy.” — PR Week

BBC journos told to make money

“There are fears for the future editorial independence of the BBC after news journalists were ordered to come up with money-generating ideas for the corporation, a leaked email reveals.” — The Independent

Guardian journos given iPhones

The Guardian has given 20 of its general reporters iPhones in a bid to ‘take advantage’ of the latest mobile photography and video technology to ‘supplement’ the news outlet’s existing video output.” —

Sorkin’s The Newsroom debuts with 2.1 million in US

“HBO generated a huge amount of talk — positive and negative — about its new Aaron Sorkin drama, The Newsroom, and it managed some better-than-average audience totals for its premiere Sunday night.” — The New York Times