What do you know about COVID-19 if you rely on the front page of Australia’s tabloid newspapers? Judging from the efforts of News Corp over the past six months, you’d know just one big thing: there’s always someone to blame.
First China. Then Dan Andrews. Now young women. Thursdays front-page declaration by The Courier-Mail that a pair of 19-year-olds who tested positive for COVID-19 and failed to self-isolate were "enemies of the state" drew particular attention. But it's all part of the same playbook.
Once the front pages led with the news you needed to know and, at their best, why it mattered. Now they’re text-free analogue re-creations of digital clickbait and social media memes.