ABC Friends Victoria is supporting calls for a royal commission into News Corporation’s near-monopoly influence over the Australia media landscape.
The call for an independent inquiry into News Corp and its “cancerous” effect has been made by former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, who has put together a petition to Parliament which has now (at time of publication) gathered more than 260,000 signatures.
“Murdoch has become a cancer — an arrogant cancer on our democracy.” — Kevin Rudd
Mr Rudd appealed to the public to sign the petition via social media.
The petition has been so popular it, for a time, caused the parliamentary website to crash, and it has been picked up by international media.
The petition will continue to gather signatures until 4 November, and ABC Friends is encouraging all of its members and supporters to take part.
The petition is being mounted as news that James Murdoch — one of Rupert Murdoch’s children — has come out publicly against his father’s media empire.
The former CEO of 21st Century Fox said he stepped away from his father’s media empire because it legitimises disinformation and obscures facts.
James Murdoch said:
“I reached the conclusion that you can venerate a contest of ideas, if you will, and we all do and that’s important. But it shouldn’t be in a way that hides agendas.”
“A contest of ideas shouldn’t be used to legitimise disinformation, and I think it’s often taken advantage of.”
“And I think at great news organizations, the mission really should be to introduce fact to disperse doubt — not to sow doubt, to obscure fact, if you will.”
The statements were made during an exclusive interview with the New York Times.