Australian inquiry recommends new journalistic watchdog

By REUTERS
March 2, 2012 04:57

CANBERRA - An Australian media inquiry report released on Friday recommended a new body to set and enforce journalistic standards.

The independent report, released by the Australian government, called for a "News Media Council" to set media standards and handle complaints made by the public.

Australian media is among the world's most concentrated, with Rupert Murdoch's News Ltd controlling some 70 percent of the country's newspaper ownership.

The inquiry was launched following Murdoch's News of the World phone hacking scandal and after criticism by some politicians of biased coverage of the government's policies.

"The establishment of a council is not about increasing the power of government or about imposing some form of censorship," said the report. "It is about making the news media more accountable to those covered in the news, and to the public generally."


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