The Senate will hold an inquiry into media diversity and the impact of big tech giants including Facebook, Google and Twitter, on Australia’s media industry.
Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, who moved the motion for the inquiry, argued there was a “problem with media diversity” in Australia and the “future of journalism”.
The motion was supported by Labor and was not opposed by the Government, passing without a vote.
As well as big-techs impact on now people consume news, the inquiry will also look at the impact of media ownership laws on local media concentration, and changes to business models since the advent of online news.
The role of a newswire service will also be examined, along with the barriers faced by community and small news outlets and public interest journalism.
Michael Miller, executive chairman of News Corp Australasia, owner of this website, said the company would engage constructively with the inquiry.
“News Corp Australia has been a participant in at least nine media inquiries held over the past decade. As always, we will continue to constructively engage in these important conversations,’’ he said.
Senator Hanson-Young said she moved for the inquiry after former Labor leader Kevin Rudd organised a petition calling for a Royal Commission into News Corp newspapers and proprietor Rupert Murdoch.
Mr Rudd, who was recently forced to distance himself from revelations his New York peace think tank received hundreds of thousands of dollars from disgraced paedophile Jeffrey Epstein, has made claims the “Murdoch media act as a political protection racket for the Liberal and National parties”.
The inquiry will report back by next November.