Aug 12, 2014

Essential: Australians reject data retention, Abbott gains ground on Shorten

The latest Essential Report shows the only segment of the community that supports data retention is the one that uses IT least, and Tony Abbott records his best approval rating since April.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

A majority of Australians have rejected data retention and don’t trust governments or corporations to handle their data, this week’s Essential Report shows, while Tony Abbott has begun regaining ground lost to Opposition Leader Bill Shorten. Fifty-one per cent of Australians disapprove of the government’s proposal to force telecommunications companies and internet service providers to collect data from their use of a communications service, including 30% who strongly disapprove. Responses are strongly linked to age: 39% of voters approve of data retention, with support mostly confined to over-55s; 64% of respondents aged 18-34 disapprove; while 54% of those aged 55 and over approve. Hostility among under-35s is particularly strong, with 39% saying they “strongly disapprove” of data retention. In short, the only segment of the community that supports data retention is the one that uses IT least. 

But even supporters of data retention have little trust that governments or companies will store their data safely. Sixty-eight per cent have little or no trust that data would be stored safely and in a way that would prevent abuse, with even Liberal voters -- the strongest supporters of data retention, not trusting governments or companies.

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9 thoughts on “Essential: Australians reject data retention, Abbott gains ground on Shorten

  1. klewso

    How many tragedies can we have between now and the election?

  2. Zeke

    So Toe Knee Rabbit has improved his standing with voters. Ditching the budgie-smugglers and waving said budgie around on the world stage always works well with ill-informed voters. They love to see Australia’s leadership waving their “prominences” as they strut about… a small cockerel in a big world.

  3. Observation

    Operation sovereign boarders, operation bring them home, team Australia, budget crisis, Terrorist armies forming in the middle east pushing to take over the world, data collation on citizens to prevent terrorist acts on home soil. When fear is the underlying colour running through the message then generally voters dont want to change the government. rAbbott and his wrong wing cronies will keep the threats to Australia front and center to avoid scrutiny on the actual running of the country. You will see most public appearances and announcements will be when dealing with a crisis or national security.

    Every decision and policy seems to have a “we have no choice for the safety and security of the nation” back drop.

    On top of this, the opposition has Bill Shorten trying to oppose and shed light on Liberal policies where he seems to be developing a drone in his voice unlike other recent previous Labor leaders. Is there nobody out there with some spunk and orating punch to deliver some penetration to the arguments within the Labor party?????

  4. Daly

    I despair. I realise what an outlier I am! 🙁

  5. MJPC

    Surely our esteemed PM will run out of three word slogans soon: Stop the Tax, stop the boats, bring them home, Save the budget, bomb the jihadi’s, slug the sick, what the F…
    Maybe then the votletariat will realise that if there isn’t a crises to make him look good, he will confect one (an old Liberal trick).
    Also, why does he have to fly to the Netherlands to tell Journo’s about threats of sanctions to Russia when he could have done just as well back home.

  6. klewso

    “Noddy” Shorten – the one thing the Limited News Party has going for it?

  7. Dogs breakfast

    Is it just me, or does Tony’s numbers rise in direct correlation to him NOT talking about any policy matters?

    The only policy matter that TA has weighed into in recent times would be the data retention, and he did such a good job of that. The rest has been stern warnings to Russia, looking stern, being really really stern, and then being remorseful and man at a ceremony.

    They just have to keep him away from policy, and preferably newspapers, television, the internet, twatter, and watch his poll numbers rise.

  8. The Pav

    Shourten shouldn’t try to take Abbott on on the glib three word slogan front. Abbott’s too good and drags him down to his level and beats him om experience.

    The policy failings of Abbott are so manifest that there are many many simple policy arguments that can quickly and simply be made that will cut through the ether if cynicism and present Shorten as a policy person with integrity and not a smart wordsmith playing politics

  9. Observation

    Just when you thought there was going to be a reasonable discussion on the budget, Hockey Bear comes up with “The blood flow of debt”

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