Minister’s concern over Meet the Press

By David Knox on February 28, 2013 / Filed Under News 29

conroy-nThe Communications Minister Stephen Conroy is said to be privately furious about TEN’s deal for News Limited to produce Meet the Press, and even floated the idea of a ban to stop networks from outsourcing news and current affairs to other media companies.

The Australian, published by News Ltd, reports he put a proposal to Prime Minister Julia Gillard on Monday night but she rejected the idea.

Greens leader Christine Milne has also objected to TEN’s links with the media empire through Meet the Press and The Bolt Report, including raising concerns in Parliament.

Observers are still awaiting the government’s media reform package, with time to legislate it before the election slipping away.

“The government is considering the recommendations of the Convergence Review and Finkelstein inquiry and will respond in due course,” said a spokesman for the minister.

TEN has been outsourcing a new-look Meet the Press this year, with the show previously produced in-house by TEN.

29 Comments »

  1. byeana March 1, 2013 at 5:40 am -

    @Pertinax 10-39am
    “Seriously who would want buy Ten at the moment?”
    I believe all of the mega rich share holders picked up ‘all’ their increased share options aprox.a month ago, and are you saying there are no major links to the Murdoch News Empire among Ten’s share holders?.
    @bagbuffy Here! Here! Totally Agree
    @emurray 3-55 pm
    “Sky news is pretty balanced” is that balanced as in ‘Having a chip on both shoulders’ ?
    Or balanced as in Andrew Bolt’s typical tactics, where he is very cordial and seemingly agrees with someone/panelist letting them have their say even encouraging them to expand, then in the blink of an eye he does a Jekyll and Hyde 180, completely exaggerates/disputes all that has been said and then immediately ends the dialogue, denying a fair right of reply.

  2. David Knox February 28, 2013 at 11:26 pm -

    Ok play nice people.

  3. Secret Squirrel February 28, 2013 at 10:39 pm -

    @rach – if you don’t want to pull your head out of your arse that’s fine, but at least spell my name right.

  4. bagbuffy February 28, 2013 at 9:51 pm -

    Sky News isn’t Balanced at all, If you call 1 Right Wing Presenter, 2 Right Wing Contributors and 1 Disgruntled Left Winger, Balanced. Then No wonder why the Right see’s the ABC as Biased.

    The Republicans in the US are scared of Fox News, and the Republicans Toe the line of Fox Narrative. I worry that this could and will happen in Australia where if News gets stronger in the TV Media here then, there’s every possibility that the Coalition will soon have to Toe the News Limited Line.

    Thats why Conroy needs to step in, as News Limited is destroying our Democracy

    It’s Sad to see Ch10 and meet the press heading down the same line.

  5. Dr_Rudi February 28, 2013 at 9:08 pm -

    I’d be concerned too. I think it sails close to the wind in respect of cross-media ownership laws (in practise). I hope the convergence review actually considered this prospect.

    As newspaper readership plummets, Limited News are trying to get their (right) angle across by producing a television program. They should buy advertising instead, to be very clear about what their product is.

  6. Stan February 28, 2013 at 8:26 pm -

    Emurray, that’s becuase Sky Snooze is only a third owned by BSkyB who inturn is only a third owned by News Corp itself.

  7. jonno February 28, 2013 at 7:55 pm -

    If TEN cannot produce their own news and current affairs, then Conroy should take their licence off them. With a licence comes responsibility. Next we will have Gina Reinhart and Clive Palmer producing current affairs shows for TEN. The government has a duty to stop this rot.

  8. jwmcd February 28, 2013 at 6:39 pm -

    If nothing else this story has let the clueless wonders on the NBN have a little whine…

  9. emurray February 28, 2013 at 3:55 pm -

    I find it interesting that Peter Sterling – who I actually have a lot of time for as a football commentator/analyst now has his own show on Fox Sports and today he is now writing for the Daily Telegraph – so the news tentacles certainly spread across all forms of media. Specifically on the Meet the Press deal surely there is nothing stopping news ltd producing shows for networks like any other “independent producer”. I do find Sky News pretty balanced – there are always opposing views on most panel shows.

  10. Stan February 28, 2013 at 3:49 pm -

    The fact anyone can take another anti-Gillard Government beat-up from The Australian seriously is the only thing that concerns me here.

  11. gabbo February 28, 2013 at 3:06 pm -

    Regardless of the variety of views on this, there is no doubt that the new(s) Meet the Press is the thinning edge of the wedge which began last year when Murdoch, Packer, Rinehart got their hands on TEN. The horse has bolted! This move to the political right will maybe attract a few viewers but alienate so many more – just what TEN needs right now!

  12. MikeBo February 28, 2013 at 2:43 pm -

    Can’t help but feel that there is some Lib trolling going on here judging by the tone of the comments!
    It is true that the networks are privately owned and it may seem that they therefore have the right to swing the news whichever way they like.
    However, Conroy does have a responsibility in this.
    The Networks are issued licenses on certain conditions. They are a protected species and in return have certain obligations to the public. It is a fair question as to whether one of those obligations is to provide a proper news service or whether just providing a platform to any sectional interest is an acceptable form of ‘news’. News Ltd makes no pretence that they provide a balance of news. Mr Murdoch and others in News have made it clear that they promote a conservative agenda as their market niche.
    Anyone can start a newspaper and promote their bias in that format.
    By legislation, no one else can start another TV station.
    Subscription TV is controlled by News as well and they will never allow a competing news service on their channels in Australia.

  13. NicH February 28, 2013 at 2:25 pm -

    They should call it ‘Mute’ the Press… I’m sorry, I’ll go now.

  14. Carringbush February 28, 2013 at 1:37 pm -

    I don’t see what the problem is. Ch 10 is a private company and they are using their in-house resources. It’s not as if they hire a multitude of left wing oriented hosts or interviewers to provide ‘balanced’ coverage like the ABC that all taxpayers help finance.

  15. rach February 28, 2013 at 1:31 pm -

    And tens of thousands, ……please…..how many homes are there also in Australia… millions..and they will do it in 10 years..the only people making money from the taxpayers are the contractors, who NBN let take their time, Conroy must go or tell the truth,

  16. rach February 28, 2013 at 1:20 pm -

    Secret Squirell, you are either a NBN employee worried that your job will be on the line when the Libs get in,a Labor/Conroy blinkered person, or you are just sucked in by Whirlpool which is just a forum for self interest parties to blog, i.e NBN Co. Trust me where I live they are 12 months behind, and what about this for NBN Co stupidity,in friends street, his side no NBN Cable run, across the small road it is , but wait, he can’t get it, cause no one will take it from that side to his sidenot allowed, he will just have to wait till NBN put it on his side,when will that be……. 2 years time, continue to live in dream land Squirell!!!!!!!!!

  17. Secret Squirrel February 28, 2013 at 12:31 pm -

    @rach – keep up, there are tens of thousands of people connected to the NBN and more could be if they chose to change over. I know someone who’s enjoying 50Mbps and I’m jealous, my area is due for rollout later this year.

    The NBN is far from a joke and will pay for itself in 5 years – it will generate revenue. Name me one other major infrastructure project that can claim that.

    whirlpool.net.au has more if you’re interested.

  18. joey69 February 28, 2013 at 11:59 am -

    Maybe Minister Conroy could get Tony Jones from Q&A to host the show, that should skew it to the left.

  19. David Knox February 28, 2013 at 11:06 am -

    So is it Meet the Press or Meet the News Ltd Press? Hope they include other journos.

  20. Pertinax February 28, 2013 at 10:39 am -

    Again News Corp owns no shares in Ten. And has categorically ruled out buying any. Seriously who would want to buy Ten at the moment?

    This is purely and simply Channel 10 using the experienced political journalists at News in an outsourcing arrangement that benefits both parties. Rather than Ten having to maintain it own stable of experience political journalists and produces to make 30 minutes of TV a week, which they can’t afford.

    Ten is responsible to editorial content, and liable under the Free TV code of conduct. If there is anything that violates the code Conroy can report it and seek action from the ACMA if he isn’t satisfied.

    Gillard has now made at least one sensible decision in her Primeministership — stopping Conroy from making an even bigger fool of himself. .

  21. rach February 28, 2013 at 10:21 am -

    Senator Conroy sets up the NBN monopoly then cries over this issue,the man is a disgrace and ain’t great he won’t be Comms Minister after Sept 14th, he is a dictator , a bully , like telling overseas conference “if I tell the Telco’s to wear red underpants over their heads, they will”.

    The NBN is a joke and costing us a fortune(is there anyone actually connected to it yet) and Conroy just spins lies about it’s progress, can’t wait till Turnbull and the Libs expose it after the election as it should be

  22. camo2 February 28, 2013 at 10:20 am -

    i think this bloke is a joke and possibly the worst Communications minister we have ever had. End of story. Doesnt he already undersatnd that its the Press Gallery of Fed Parliament that dictates what is reported every night…

  23. JoeBloggs February 28, 2013 at 9:29 am -

    If Fairfax were producing it, Conroy wouldn’t give 2 hoots.

    Absolutely no shame Senator Conroy. How is that internet censorship working out for you?

  24. slam February 28, 2013 at 9:23 am -

    Strange objection given the editorial is controlled by TEN. There’s really no change to the finished program other than the involvement of News in the production which appears not to have had any effect.

    It boggles the mind how a man with no knowledge of the media is in charge of creating the policy for it. His level of intervention appears to be an attempt to exert influence to prevent editorial which may be critical of him…

  25. Josh777 February 28, 2013 at 9:08 am -

    I’m confused, News Corp is a shareholder in TEN but they aren’t allowed to input their resources? News Corp own Fox News and a share of Sky News but they’re not allowed to have a weekly hour show on a FTA network? This just seems stupid to me given Conroy has found no current legislation to forbid it and this is the smarter business idea than doing it in house.

  26. Pertinax February 28, 2013 at 9:06 am -

    Conroy made up the NBN on the back of envelop on the way to sell it to Rudd. Why would you expect more from him?

    He is blatantly abusing his position to try and stop any media coverage that is critical of him. His definition of a person fit to be a media owner is simply anyone who will suck up to him.

  27. bagbuffy February 28, 2013 at 9:04 am -

    When News Limited gets involved I become worried, News Limited is killing “Democracy” as they are nothing more then a Propaganda machine for the Conservatives. Just look at Sky News, All except Richo are Right Wing Talk shows and 75% of the hosts are former Liberal staffers. And their odd “Left” Winged contributor/s are usually former disgruntled Labor staffers who want to sink the boot into Labor. And the Bolt report is nothing more than a Mouth Piece for the Conservatives.

    All politicians on both sides f the Aisle should be held accountable and for their actions and policies.

    I hope Ch 10 Meet The Press stays neutral for the Good of all Australians and hope that the Jurnos keep asking the tough questions so they can keep all the “Bastards” honest. just not a certain few.

  28. csh February 28, 2013 at 8:46 am -

    This is just breathtaking. The Government’s been give two very weighty reports with loads of proposals to restructure regulation to fit the new media market. Rather than pushing these through it looks like Conroy is making it up as he goes along, plucking ideas out of thin air.

  29. nicks February 28, 2013 at 7:32 am -

    When this minister becomes concerned I become worried.I’m sure he’d still censor the internet to his liking if he had numbers in parliament…thank goodness for stalemate.

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