Media and Australian Politics

Media and Australian Politics

Media is a fundamental feature of the liberal democracy. In a democratic society if the government is allowed to have control all the information regarding its actions then it would be highly possible to escape its actions. Similarly, the citizens’ unacceptable actions may rise to the unacceptable levels. This is the reason why the free and independent press should be given the opportunity to thrive in the liberal democracy. Free and independent media provide people with suitable information so that they may act appropriately (Bennett, 2002). Therefore, media acts as the watchdog of the government power and its impact on the nation citizens. Research findings indicate that people who consume a lot of media news have a greater probability of being politically and civically influenced.  In the recent past, there has been the fast growth of the media accompanied by declining costs of internet services, satellite, televisions, and radios. This scenario has greatly helped in availing to the citizens the crucial information about the actions of the government. On the other side, the expansion of the media has helped several organizations from various political fields to meet their targeted group quickly and effectively. Similarly, Australia has been experiencing the same conditions on the influence of the media power on the country politics. This is a Student Sample ORDER YOUR PAPER NOW

Australian Media Politics News

According to Young (2008), politics fall under the category of the most reported topics by the Australian media. The examination of how the media report their political news it is evident that is getting much involved in the country politics. Additionally, the politicians also influence how the new are presented. This leads to question the core role and objectives of the media industry in the country. Research findings have indicated that as a result of the busy lifestyles people depend on the media obtain the latest political news (Sauter & Bruns, 2013).  Again, it has been found that media play a big role in determining which politicians can trump their political opponents. For example, the live political debate in the media gives the viewers an opportunity to analyze how politicians can perform while under pressure. Through this debates, indirectly the media decides which politicians can perform better than their opponents. This helps the well-performing politicians to build their political reputation as well as obtain the extra mass of supporters. The high involvement of the media in the politics has seen the politicians engaging in controlling the message and information to be reported by the media.

According to Independent Australia (2012) despite many media outlets in Australia the manner of reporting news has significantly changed. The huge amount of news reported today leaves the consumers with the task of analyzing and evaluating task to pick the helpful information. Only, a few readers can analyze and come up with the essential media news. The other huge number is left to acquire the reported information literally and thus ends up being fed with cajoling, deceive, and deliberate persuasion and propaganda that the writer or reporter intended to pass across. The findings in Australia indicate that the media outlets have become powerful political means of persuading and influencing the consumers of the news to conform to the beliefs and the ideologies of reporters and authors. In Australian both in the media and political environments, there have been the scenarios whereby the media has got highly involved in the politics.

Media Power in Politics Scenarios

In Australia, Labor Party seemed to have suffered from negative influence from one of the media outlets (Independent Australia, 2012). For example, whenever Labor Party had some good news to pass across they always encountered obstruction, and they never reached the citizens. Additionally, when this party attained the success in the legislative goal, its efforts were never recognized.  Independent Australia (2012) noted that the labor achievements were not recognized because of lack of communication. According to Independent Australia (2012) it is the media that ensured the attempts of the government to communicate effectively were thwarted. It was the media that fueled the spread of the negative information as well downside any positive aspect that the government achieved.

The Australian media filters scrutinize the positive news about the government and replace them with the negative. This becomes influential among the citizens in tarnishing the name of the government. For example, Murdoch media and Fairfax Media’s have been very active in expressing their power in politics (Independent Australia, 2012). These two media have been in the forefront in ensuring the continual campaigns to establish strategies obstructions to ensure Labor cannot effectively communicate its success to the relevant target groups. This one of the few examples of the many that have been taking place within the political and media environments of Australia. From this example, it can be non-arguably viewed how the media is powerful in the contemporary Australian politics.

Relationship between Media and Politics in Australia

Media, public, and politics are correlated. As noted by Craig (2004) political communication occurs majorly through the media. Therefore, the media can decide whether to fuel on the spread of the political reports or rather to give them a scornful eye. However, the media seems only to focus on the negative side of the objects they are reporting. Over, the recent decades, the media has been receiving criticisms not only from the public but also from the politicians (Scheufele & Tewksbury, 2007).  This phenomenon has not been experienced in Australia as well as in other parts of the globe. This has continued to worsen the tense relationship between the politicians and the media. Media has been accused of revealing the confidential secrets of the government as well as the plans of the politicians. Additionally, they have been accused of being partisan in their reporting whereby their involvement in the politics has seen some politicians gain higher public support due to the positive reporting.

Mass media has been very influential in determining which party and which political leaders assumes power. Among all the medium in Australia, Murdoch newspapers are termed as the most influential. Given the fact that his written media makes up to seventy percent of the Australian media, Murdoch media power is very impactful in making or destroying either the party or the individual politician. For example, Murdoch was not happy with the Labor Party assuming the power in 2010, and thus he summoned his journalists and ordered them that they should ensure Labor Party does not ascend to power again in 2013. The journalists were supposed to disregard anything that involved the success of the Labor Party and advanced their reporting when dealing with the information pertaining the negatives of the party. As noted by The Conversation (2013) Murdoch beliefs and moods are a key determining factors during the time of elections in Australia.

Political leaders have mastered where the power lies and thus when they want to gain political mileage they turn to Murdoch newspapers to build their public image as well destroy that of their political rivals. To perfect this they use the State of Queensland where the supremacy of the Murdoch Courier- Mail is highly evidenced. Bearing in mind that newspapers are the major sources of information for the online bloggers as well as television and radio the political influence of the Murdoch newspapers usually influence a lot of people in Australia. Again, the reporting of the same incidence of either tarnishing or refurbishing the name of the particular party or politician occurs on the daily basis thus fueling the spread of the vices among the masses as well as making it more believable to those may be having doubt.

However, many have accused Murdoch high involvement in the politics as the way of protecting his commercial interests.  According to The Conversation (2013) Murdoch started campaigning against Labor Party because it showed the interest of establishing National Broadband Network (NBN). The network which had a potential of meeting some of the citizens needs initially offered by the Murdoch’s Foxtel Television was a major threat to the business of Murdoch.  Murdoch uses his media power to influence the government in making the decisions on the projects which should be initiated to improve the life of the society. The Conversation (2013) argued that Murdoch has got a high seat in the Australian national politics. It is from this indirect position where Murdoch seems to enjoy his political influence in the elections and decisions of Australia.

According to Cissel (2012), the media core goals should be defining the problems affecting the society and avail them to the government in a reflective manner. However, what has been happening in Australia is a pure politics between the politicians and the political parties. As the saying goes “information is power”. The Australian politicians seem to have been outwitted by Murdoch with his influential techniques. This is in contrast with the framing of the media which emphasizes on reporting without irrespective of the media affiliations. For Australian, things seems different whereby the media can be highly influential to the extent of influencing the decisions of the government. This is in line with views of Cissel (2012) which denotes that the business of media has been highly influenced by the pursuit of the commercial interest by the media owners.

Media Roles

From the analysis of the Australian political and media condition it is evident that media has been impactful in the Australian contemporary politics. According to Dijk (2008), media power is very persuasive and influential among the masses. This is because the media information has a certain degree of potential to control the minds of the viewers, listeners or readers. Again, the academic research purport that the media has no ability to use the coercive power or sanctions mechanisms to influence the people. Therefore, this improves the certainty of the media ideas, opinions and beliefs being accepted by the people unlike bureaucratic institutions or legal powers.  The bigger part of Australian media use this power to control and determine the political atmosphere in the country. Despite, sociological and psychological evidence suggest that not the minds of all people that can be controlled by the information provided by the media, the studies show that only a few can make analyze whatever is offered by the media and make the informed decision. However, the majority of the people fall under the class of falling the victims of the media power influence.

The sociology of the media power concept denotes that the media is very influential in the thinking and the behavior of the targeted audience (Zaller, 2009). The scholars argue that the studies that acknowledge that the media opinions and suggestions are not influential among the audience lack validity, and thus they should not be relied upon. For example, the observations have revealed that children try to conform to the actions and the behavior they learn through the media. Similarly, the targeted audience despite their age will be affected by the political ideologies perpetuated by the media. The effect may be either positive or negative. The positive response to the media political news will mean the viewer, reader or listener beliefs on the media opinions. On the other hand, negative response denotes that the targeted audience dismisses the media ideas and opinions. However, the studies have indicated that only the individuals who can comprehensively and extensively evaluate whatever the information provided by the media can make the sound decision. However, this most of the times become hardly feasible because the large mass falls the culprits of media information without scrutinizing it.


From the analysis of the Australian political environment and the nature of the country media, it is clear that media has too much power in contemporary Australian politics. The media especially the Murdoch newspapers seems to control the country large populace. The media can determine the political direction of the country by ascertaining which political party or which individual party ascends to power. For example, Labor Party seems to suffer from the lack of communication of its success. This is because the media has been largely behind the obstruction of the party’s success and achievements information dissemination to the citizens. Instead, the media seems only to focus on the negatives of the labor party.  Murdoch seems to greatly involve in politics to achieve his commercial ambitions. This essay recommends that the media in Australia should focus on practicing integrity, fairness, and trust bestowed upon them under their code of ethics. This will ensure the elimination of the unbiased reporting experienced across the continent of Australia.  This is a Student Sample ORDER YOUR PAPER NOW


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Craig, G. (2004). The Media, Politics and Public Life. NSW: Allen & Unwin.

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Independent Australia. (2012, August 6). The Media in the Middle. Retrieved from independentaustralia.net: independentaustralia.net

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The Conversation. (2013, August 7). Murdoch and his influence on Australian political life . Retrieved from http://theconversation.com: http://theconversation.com/murdoch-and-his-influence-on-australian-political-life-16752

Young, S. (2008). Politics and the Media in Australia Today. Canberra: Sky News.

Zaller, J. (2009). A Theory of Media Politics. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

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