Fourth Estate Articles List



145 Articles Found


Fox News isn’t the problem, it’s the media’s obsession with Fox News

The American press seems fixated on Fox News and its owners, the Murdoch family.


For the 'political-infotainment-media complex,' the Mueller investigation was a gold mine

As a media scholar trying to understand today’s rapidly changing media landscape, I view the Mueller investigation coverage as a direct symptom of a political-infotainment-media complex that has blurred the lines between tabloid soap operas and respectable journalism.


How real journalism can thrive in the fake-news era: Lessons from Brazil

In the RSF Index 2018 report, the NGO Reporters without Borders highlighted how media were facing a constant “anti-media rhetoric” from politicians that has spread out throughout the world. With such attacks, far-right political strategists such as Steve Bannon seek to discredit legitimate media and lift up social media – where “news” can more easily escape from editorial gate-keeping and accountability – to become the main source of information to the public.


The Journalism Advocate: proposing a new initiative for these times

With the world wrestling with the disruptive impact of digital communication on democracy, and the news media struggling for its very survival as it faces unprecedented challenges and public attack, we desperately need new institutions and mechanisms to put the public foremost in considering the functions of media.


From irreverence to irrelevance: the rise and fall of the bad-tempered tabloids

“Kick this mob out” shouted the front page of The Daily Telegraph reporting the calling of the 2013 election in which Tony Abbott was to triumph. Restraint and modesty have never been the hallmarks of tabloid newspapers. Sometimes they celebrate what they claim is their impact – most famously when the London Sun proclaimed “It’s The Sun wot won it” after the 1992 Conservative victory. But it is a long time since any tabloid newspaper could plausibly claim such a role because their reach has shrunk so markedly. In 1972, the biggest-selling newspaper in Australia was The Sun News Pictorial in Melbourne, with a daily circulation of 648,000. Its stablemate, the Melbourne Herald, was the biggest-selling afternoon newspaper with 498,000.


Our faith in information is faltering when we most need facts

We shouldn’t need a Super Bowl commercial costing around $10 million to remind us that information is supposed to matter in a democracy. Yet the Washington Post thought we did, so it told 111 million Americans watching the Super Bowl that “knowing empowers us, knowing helps us decide, knowing keeps us free.” It was another sign that our longstanding faith in the power of information is faltering, undermining democracy. And unless we want this faith to be replaced by authoritarianism, we need to reform our education and political systems to restore our faith in facts.


Extreme weather news may not change climate change skeptics’ minds

A recent study from Ohio State University communications scholars found that news stories connecting climate change to natural disasters actually backfire among skeptics.


Masters of media distraction

Is Jose Mourinho, the Donald Trump of football? Or is Trump the “special one” of world politics? Both are masters of diversion, both believe that dark forces – the FA, the FBI, the media – are plotting against them. They see conspiracies all around, create enemies to rally their teams and supporters, specialise in siege mentalities and a burning sense of injustice.


Australia’s plans for internet regulation: aimed at terrorism, but harming human rights

Since the tragic attack on two mosques in Christchurch earlier this month, Australian leaders have raised concerns that social media platforms have become facilitators, if not full-on enablers, of the spread of terrorist ideas and content. The government appears to be considering far-reaching criminal sanctions if social media executives do not comply with newly planned measures to address the problem.


Poor coverage of floods in southern Africa? Blame media bosses

South African media has been criticised on social media for its initially superficial and underwhelming coverage of the massive floods in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi in the wake of the devastating Tropical Cyclone Idai. Serious news consumers had to rely on foreign news sources instead of local media as the grim picture of the destruction – which included hundreds of deaths, flooding, disease and havoc to resources and infrastructure – started emerging.