From the Age: Liberal leadership spill coup sparks News Corp ‘civil war’

September 23, 2015 § Leave a comment

Appeared on my twitter feed. You can read the article here.

The low-down: News Corp owns The Australian and The Daily Telegraph. Bolt, who writes for the Daily Telegraph claims that The Australian is probably making a loss of $20m a year, which is being subsidised by other News Corp papers such as the Herald Sun and the Daily Telegraph. The Daily Telegraph has always supported Abbott, and Bolt says that The Australian ‘should be slower to now insist others fall in dutifully and loyally behind Turnbull’.

Then,

Mr Mitchell told The Australian in response that the readers of Bolt’s blog were different from The Australian’s core demographic.

“Bolt’s audience includes many conservative retirees whereas The Australian’s readership is younger, rich, better educated and working in legal, political or the business community,” he said. “These people don’t read the Tele or Bolt.”

This makes The Australian’s political leaning even less clear, but I think most papers don’t have a clear political allegiance even though it is generally accepted that Fairfax is more left and News Corp is more right.

The University of the Sunshine Coast conducted a survey of journalists a few years back. It found that most reporters were left-of-centre, whereas senior editors tend to be more right-leaning. It also found:

others have accused News Limited – and particularly its flagship newspaper The Australian – of being overly conservative in its political views.

At first glance, the findings do not support this assumption, with no significant differences in the way journalists from the ABC and News rate their political views on a scale of 0 (left) to 10 (right).

However, 41.2% of the 34 ABC journalists who declared a voting intention said they would vote for the Greens, followed by 32.4% for Labor and 14.7% for the Coalition. In contrast, 46.5% of 86 News Limited journalists who answered this question said they would vote for Labor, 26.7% for the Coalition, and only 19.8% for the Greens…

Among the 86 Fairfax Media journalists who responded, Labor was by far the most popular party at 54.7% support, followed by the Coalition and the Greens, both on 19.8%.

For ease of comparison, that’s:

Greens Labour Liberal Coalition
ABC (n = 34) 41.2% 32.4% 14.7%
News Corp (n = 86) 19.8% 46.5% 26.7%
Fairfax (n = 86) 19.8% 54.7% 19.8%
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