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12 March, 2021

Do we need a free and fair media?

A free and fair media is essential in today’s world. Too often we have opinion dominated by a few.

By Peter McCullagh

A free and fair media is essential in today’s world. Too often we have opinion dominated by a few. 

There was a day when the Australian media landscape consisted of hundreds of small media companies, servicing the needs of their local communities. 

The television industry used to have hundreds of hours of locally produced programming specific to a region. I can remember Townsville Telecasters producing a TV show in the 80’s called Kid’s Army featuring Kenny the Wonder Dog. 

In Tasmania we produced logie award winning shows like Goodsports and Bert Taylors Tasmania. Where is local production today? 

What local TV exists today. Nothing, we have three commercial networks and very little local production except for some from WIN Television. 

In newspaper we have the same problem. Gone are the day of hundred’s of local newspapers all representing the local community and providing a voice and diversity of voice for the readers. 

If we are to continue to grow as a nation and build a strong free thinking community we need to have a free and fair media. Australia is a diverse community with aa range of cultural backgrounds, races and cultures, and deserves a diversity of voices in their media. 

The minorities in our communities deserve to be heard, so too the silent majority need a voice. Is it appropriate for government to do editorial deals with a multinational and give preference to a multinational to exclusively carry their messages for the public? 

Do you think it fair that you should pay to read the government announcements? Would it be appropriate for the government to only advertise in papers belonging to a multinational? 

A free and fair media give communities a voice, a seat at the table of public opinion. A free and fair media also needs to be supported by governments of all levels and it needs to be cherished. 

Cairns Local News is committed to giving a voice the north, committed to ensuring we always have diversity of voice and always delivering the news that is important for our community. 

Peter McCullagh Editor

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