Why does it matter?

Why does it matter?

This week we were asked to look at a source of media we use, who has editorial control and why does it matter. Well, the media source I would like to talk about is the ABC or Australian Broadcasting Corporation. I think it is important to talk about the ABC because in the chaos of media ownership in Australia, this service stands apart by not being owned or aligned with the key players such as Rupert Murdoch or Gina Rinehart but by being owned by the Australian Government.

The ABC is an excellent example for this question because it is one of only a few sources for reliable and unbiased news left in Australia. While it may be owned by the Australian Government they have no editorial control and simply fund this station, editorial control for the ABC lays with current Managing Director Mark Scott who has “…ultimate editorial power and responsibility.” (Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2011). The only other group with editorial powers after the Managing Director is the ABC Board, a group of seven people chosen by the governor general recommended by the government, it is their job to ensure “…that the gathering and presentation of news and information is accurate and impartial, according to recognised standards of journalism, and that the ABC complies with legislative and legal requirements.” (Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2014)

Along with these editorial powerhouses is the ABC Code of Practice followed by all Journalist’s working for this corporation which was developed by the ABC Board. This document is very impressive in that it puts more force on its journalists to self-regulate their work and when writing to make “…assertions of fact, not to expressions of opinion.” (Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2014). This basically means that all stories must have a basis in fact and not be expressions of opinions.

So why does it matter? It matters because for the ABC, editorial control is more of a way to make the news more reliable and accurate instead of monopolizing the news for personal interest like other media moguls do.

Well that’s all for this week. I hope its informative stuff!

Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2011. Our Editorial Policies. [Online]
Available at: http://about.abc.net.au/reports-publications/editorial-policies/
[Accessed 29 March 2014].

Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2014. Code of Practice 2014. [Online]
Available at: http://about.abc.net.au/reports-publications/code-of-practice-2014/
[Accessed 29 March 2014].

Australian Broadcasting Corporation, 2014. The ABC Board. [Online]
Available at: http://about.abc.net.au/who-we-are/the-abc-board/
[Accessed 29 March 2014].


4 thoughts on “Why does it matter?

  1. It’s really good to see an entry about something that is (basically) free of control!
    I like the point you make about the ABC being reliable and trustworthy, something you definitely don’t get from some newspapers and radio stations.
    It’s definitely something the world needs more of so that we can make up our own minds and come to our own conclusions instead of individuals ideologies being shoved down our throats.

  2. Loved reading about the ABC, a corporation that is practically unbiased and produces sole and trustworthy information to the public- that’s really all we’re asking for, isn’t it? It truly does matter who owns the media we use and this is such a great example of, in a way, a lack of ownership and presents its readers with nothing but statements about what’s happening in our world. A great post 🙂

  3. Triple J – The one stop spot to hear news that is not majorly tainted! Though i wouldn’t affirm it’s completely unbiased, it can be an unconscious action of the ABC journalists to give an opinion from their on perspective, thus creating a small degree of subjectivity. Excellent post, with a well informed author! Great research!!

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