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Thanks Rupert Murdoch, but Australians can choose their own government.

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Published on Aug 27, 2013

Rupert Murdoch's newspapers created controversy during the 2013 Australian Federal Election campaign for the political campaign some newspapers were seen to be running against one side of politics.

The Gosford Anglican Church's sign perhaps said it best: "Thanks Rupert, but we'll choose our own Government."

They were supported by the Australian Press Council who issued a warning to newspapers this week, saying "a paper's editorial viewpoints and its advocacy of them must be kept separate from its news columns."*

News Corp employs some of the best journalists in the country, and until recently, The Courier-Mail in particular has been a reasonably balanced newspaper. But during this election campaign, News Corp Australia have consistently used the front pages of The Courier-Mail and The Daily Telegraph to launch aggressive political campaigns against one side of politics**, while failing to scrutinise the other.

The Murdoch-owned News Corp publications account for 65% of national and metropolitan daily newspaper circulation***. In Brisbane, home to more marginal seats than anywhere in the country, The Courier-Mail is the only state-wide daily newspaper available. What's more, News Corp have been turning their front pages into huge political ads, installing them as bus-shelter and outdoor advertisements in key electorates.

We expect news from our newspapers. We expect to hear from journalists reporting the facts fearlessly, not from editors who have been flown in to run an attack-dog political campaign.

So Australian's sent a strong message to Rupert Murdoch by sending this ad viral online despite networks trying to block it.

[1] Australian press watchdog chides Murdoch media, Reuters. 27th August 2013.
[2] Murdoch's election coverage 'insult to Australians', SMH. 26th August 2013.
[3] FactCheck: does Murdoch own 70% of newspapers in Australia? 8th August 2013.

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