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Crikey: Could a boycott of News Corp work?

Mark Fletcher
August 15th, 2019 · 8 Comments

A report from Chris Woods at Crikey Tuesday about whether a boycott of News Corp. titles could work is interesting reading, especially for newsagents and other retailers of newspapers. Click here to access the report. Here are the opening pars of the article…

Over the weekend, two major things happened in the News Corp universe.

First, The Australian launched a new page technically titled “gender issues” that, coincidentally, is 99% directed at trans people. Of those, the majority either focus on the Prime Minister’s squeamishness about trans people playing cricket, fear-mongering over Victoria’s new birth certificate laws, or flat-out lies about people “castrating children”. The folks at Junkee go into this further, but the short story is that no, neither early childhood support or latter-stage puberty blockers are anywhere near the same thing as castration.

Secondly, journalist Rick Morton published his first major story since leaving The Australian, which, not for nothing, covers a world-first study examining how News Corp papers embolden far-right groups that use stories around safe schools and immigration as recruitment tools. Morton joins a growing stable of journalists and editors who have left the media giant.

Both these events didn’t come from nowhere — and they have both helped spur existing campaigns against News Corp, each targeting different facets of the organisation. But can they work? Crikey looks into the realities of such a disparate push.

What interests me is that social media has evolved into an easy to access protect platform through which people can organise. This is a risk for News Corp and its use of its newspapers and other media outlets to yell at people. push agendas and tell people how to vote.

Regulars here will know I have been interested in the newsagent boycott of The Sun in the UK. I wonder if that could happen here now that there are more respected former News journalists outside of News Corp.


Category: Ethics · Social responsibility

8 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Leon Tonna // Aug 15, 2019 at 8:43 AM

    “What interests me is that social media has evolved into an easy to access protect platform through which people can organise.”

    The offshoots of silicon valley (google, youtube etc) have a certain political leaning. The content is algorithmically ranked accordingly so balance is skewed.

    Most people don’t organise, they are organised (nudged)

    At least with newspapers you know the political leanings of what you are buying. Confirmation bias.

    I guess you could hide one at the back of your shop. Still available but harder to find.


  • 2 Colin // Aug 15, 2019 at 9:43 PM

    According to the latest numbers :

    ‘Tiser circulation slides while fewer online readers pay”

    Won’t need much of a boycott to finish Adelaide’s masthead off.


  • 3 Graeme Day // Aug 15, 2019 at 10:16 PM

    Why would anyone want to boycott press which is the essence of free speech.


  • 4 Leon Tonna // Aug 16, 2019 at 8:22 AM

    Agree Graeme,

    All speech should be protected, newspapers, personal or whatever (within in the law of course.) We are then free to decide what we believe or otherwise. Any restriction of that is a worry. Words don’t kill people action does.


  • 5 Jonathan Wilson // Aug 16, 2019 at 1:16 PM

    I support free speech. But not when media outlets use that privilage to spread lies, FUD and BS in order to influence the outcome of elections in ways that benefit big business or vested interests.


  • 6 Helen // Dec 20, 2019 at 9:54 AM

    The Australian is using its front page to cast aspersions on the group of retired fire chiefs and Tim Flannery because of their speaking out about the climate and bushfire crisis. Two volunteer fire fighters have just been killed and others suffering severe burns. This once respectable newspaper has descended to a propaganda rag propping up fossil fuel vested interests and their political supporters. What do newsagents think of this? How many newsagents in rural towns currently besieged by the bushfires notice the appalling role these papers have played in allowing these vested interests to have their way through the Orwellian distortion of reality.


  • 7 Graeme Day // Dec 21, 2019 at 9:34 AM

    Helen, I think many like minded people such as yourself would take affirmative action and stop buying-reading those type of publications.
    some others see the “greenies” should carry some of the responsibility because of their refusal to allow backburning in the off seasons of the recent past.
    Whatever the view ppoint I agree it is totally insensitive for such headlines in a time of heroes fighting fires to save others shoud die in action.
    post mortems should be held to a later date for clear think and perspective.
    This is time for mourning, respecting and thanking them and condolences to their loved ones.


  • 8 Benjamin Waters // Jan 14, 2020 at 11:59 PM

    Our media ownership laws are actually anti free speech in that they mean the media landscape is a very, very uneven playing field…


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