Category Archives: Media

The ABC-Out of sight, out of care

This continues yesterday’s feature on ABC Australia, our underfunded and neglected TV presentation to the Asia Pacific. Look on, ye neighbours, and despair.

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ABC sending a strange message to the region.

The slashing and burning of ABC workers, their goodies and services seems to have missed the overseas TV service ABC Australia. That’s no reason to whoop. Further cuts will kill.

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An open letter to the Prime Minister from ABC friends and supporters

Your recent statement “ There have been no cuts to the ABC “ sadly reminds us of Tony Abbott’s similar bold election promise in 2013, yet this was followed by major cutbacks in his first Budget as Prime Minister. Continue reading

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The ABC’s five-year plan is spin for managed decline

Ita Buttrose and her ABC board have produced a glossy five-year plan to cover up the fact the ABC is in accelerating decline through Morrison government de-funding.

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‘Get them laughing to get them drinking’ and ‘Keep them drinking’ while they’re stuck at home.

What’s the first ad you think of when someone says alcohol? Perhaps it is Carlton Draught’s ‘This is a big ad’, or the Canadian Club ‘Over beer?’ series. Chances are, it’s an amusing commercial that comes to mind. 

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China Matters: Letter to the editor of Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun.

The article by Ms Ellen Whinnett in the 14 June 2020 edition of both The Daily Telegraph and Herald Sun contained demonstrable falsehoods and defamatory insinuations about the work of China Matters, and the supporter circle of the organisation.

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JOHN MENADUE. Michael Mullins as Guest Editor

For three weeks from Monday 15 June, Michael Mullins will be Guest Editor of Pearls and Irritations. Michael was formerly Editor of Eureka Street.

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An understated and yet a most influential and famous Australian.

Rupert Murdoch aside, which Australian has had the greatest impact on US political and public thinking in recent decades? He comes from Adelaide, is unfailingly modest, was once in the news all the time, despises most politicians and has both … Continue reading

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JOCELYN CHEY.  Marsupial Madness and the Batty Media

Reliable sources of information on Australian ties with China do not include the ultra-nationalistic PRC Global Times when it applauds Australia receiving a “slap to the face,” or the Vision Times, which reports that people have recovered from COVID-19 after … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Thanks to Ramesh Thakur

Many thanks to Ramesh Thakur who has been Guest Editor of Pearls and Irritations for last three weeks. I will be rolling up my sleeves again. Thanks also to writers and donors John Menadue

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QUENTIN DEMPSTER. BuzzFeed out: So much for diversity in Australia’s media

Two years after Australia’s competition watchdog green lighted the biggest consolidation of media ownership here in more than 40 years, the withdrawal of online start-up BuzzFeed has exposed its misjudgment.

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ANTHONY PUN and KA SING CHUA. Don’t be duped by biased media, reporters and political commentators

We argue for a more independent Australian foreign policy as former Prime Ministers Gough Whitlam, Malcolm Fraser, Bob Hawke, Paul Keating and Kevin Rudd have advocated.

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PAUL PERVERSI. An Open Letter to the ABC regarding its coverage of China in the recent past.

As a long-term consumer ABC services, I acknowledge its great achievements over the decades, despite the occasional skeleton in the closet, such as the Lateline story that sparked the Northern Territory intervention. I am very concerned, though, that in 2020 … Continue reading

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JOHN MENADUE. Ramesh Thakur as Guest Editor

For three weeks from Monday 4 May, Ramesh Thakur will be Guest Editor of Pearls and Irritations

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DUNCAN GRAHAM. Not the Freshest Meat in The Australian.

The Australian has become very liberal with their use of the word ‘EXCLUSIVE’.

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JOHN TAN. Covid-19, news media: Not enough questions.

Crisis; a virus-threat. These are causes of great concern, but not an excuse for lack of curiosity in the news media.

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DUNCAN GRAHAM Don’t cry for us,, Indonesia

Some foreign correspondents in Jakarta have done a bunk, leaving their Indonesian fixers and colleagues to confront the catastrophes they fear to face.

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DUNCAN GRAHAM. Normal service will be rezoomed forever

Witless vandals defacing the odd Zoom chat room have given repressive states (think Singapore) another excuse to stomp on a development they dread: Technology that’s letting a hundred schools of thought contend.

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LAURIE PATTON. Three Blind Mice – Caught in the Netflix trap

Australia’s commercial television networks are in trouble. Not simply because of the Coronavirus but because they failed to develop effective strategies to counter the arrival of Netflix and other ‘streaming’ platforms – something anticipated long before it happened.

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BRIAN COYNE: The Bolt-Pell interview: It was “vintage Murdoch”

Stir up the emotions of Benny-Ratz’s little people

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PATRICIA EDGAR. Education and Entertainment after COVID-19

COVID-19 has let the genie out of the bottle. Education and entertainment will not return to their traditional forms.

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JOHN TAN. Covid-19: Which news sources should you trust?

Crises bring out a natural hunger for good information. How does one choose news sources?

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JOHN MENADUE.-Strengthening Pearls and Irritations.

From next week, we will be outsourcing the production, technical support and promotion of Pearls & Irritations. 

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JOHN TAN. How the corporate media is helping Biden and normalising neoliberalism.

The corporate media is sneaking opinion into news reports, masquerading as fact. Not too subtle but a very effective form of propaganda now saturating our lives; changing what we believe to be normal; and playing on our insecurity and fears.

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JOHN TAN. More securitisation of policing functions? More democracy decay?

There is a concerted push to have ASD (Australian Signals Directorate) help in tracking paedophile suspects. Are there implications for law enforcement accountability, FOI, journalism, human rights and democracy? Take a look at some issues that have arisen in other … Continue reading

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MARCUS REUBENSTEIN: Please give this face a name

Western reports on COVID-19 have overwhelmingly been produced under a simple banner of ‘China’. It’s a homogeneous label that ignores the human face of Chinese people everywhere.

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JOHN TAN. Jokowi, identity politics … and neoliberalism.

President Joko Widodo is concerned by identity politics, which has been standard fare for neoliberal US and Australian election strategists for many years.

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HENRY BATEMAN. What Malnutrition Looks Like.

As the ABC incorporates round the clock disaster warnings into its scheduling, other programming is showing the consequence of resource deprivation.

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DAVID MACILWAIN. Australian media and its regulator conceal the true story of chemical weapons attacks in Syria

In writing a formal complaint to the overseer of Australian media ACMA over SBS’ failure to broadcast news that the OPCW’s claims on chemical weapons use in Syria had been exposed as fabricated, I have encountered a Kafkaesque problem – … Continue reading

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PAUL MALONE. Australia’s American view of the world

The Australian media’s view of the world is dictated by the US

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