Free Press

Australian Government Proposes Press Controls

Not control-freaky at all


When last I wrote about the move toward government control of the press in countries that traditionally tolerated relative media freedom, Australia was flirting with a document coughed up by the Finkelstein Inquiry which, as with Britain's Leveson Inquiry and the European Commission's High-Level Group on Media Freedom and Pluralism report, created justifications for a state grab for control of the press. Now the Australian government's flirtation has turned into a whole-hearted embrace with a sloppy kiss, as officials put forward an explicit proposal for reining-in the media under government control. What makes the situation even more interesting is that, of all the press reports, the Finkelstein Inquiry is the most overtly politicized.