The on-again, off-again media reforms are as good as out for 2016 with Communications Minister Mitch Fifield yesterday conceding “Because of the limited number of sitting days left … it may well be and probably will be next year before we can conclude that legislation.”
Labor agrees with scrapping the so-called reach rule, which prohibits a company from controlling commercial TV licences which reach more than 75 per cent of the population but disagrees with the two-out-of-three rule, which prevents a proprietor from controlling more than two of three radio, TV and newspapers in one area.
Earlier this week Media Watch host Paul Barry gave Minister Fifield his Non-Event of the Year Award, after telling the ABC in January:
MITCH FIFIELD: “I’m keen to introduce into the parliament, in the first part of this year, media laws which will reflect the world that we currently live in …”
— ABC, RN Breakfast, 13 January, 2016
“Strange, we thought Malcolm Turnbull had gone down that road in 2015,” Barry told viewers.
“But like so many others he didn’t get too far. And nor was 2016 any different.”