Cosy relationships and a front organisation: how Sky News operates as a law unto itself

Cosy relationships and a front organisation: how Sky News operates as a law unto itself

When the body in charge of regulating pay TV is stacked with Foxtel’s own executives, why are we surprised when Sky News’ baseless conspiracy theories go unchallenged?

alan jones miranda devine sky news
Alan Jones and Miranda Devine on Sky News (Image: Sky News Australia)

As alarm builds over the key role of Fox News in spreading disinformation in the United States, it turns out that in Australia the Murdochs write their own rules when it comes to what is acceptable on News Corp’s Sky News Australia. Because of a little known set of arrangements, a Murdoch front organisation is at the centre of regulating subscription television in Australia.

Inq‘s investigation into the apparent free-for-all reveals that while there are limits to what Sky’s commentators can say, the task of regulating the channel has been largely outsourced to the industry itself — with Murdoch interests dotted throughout.

The resulting spread of disinformation is now such that it would be “on the radar” of Australia’s media regulator the Australian Media and Communications Authority (ACMA), according to UTS regulation expert Professor Derek Wilding, who has held senior roles with the regulator.


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About the Author

David Hardaker — Reporter

David Hardaker

Reporter @d_hardaker

David has an extensive career as a journalist and broadcaster, primarily at the ABC where he worked on flagship programs such as Four Corners, 7.30, Foreign Correspondent, AM and PM. He spent eight years reporting in the Middle East and can speak Arabic.

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