Media is a large and pivotal part of society, each day it informs us on important events and is broadcasted through many mediums such as television, Radio, Newspapers, magazines, and social networking forums. Its everywhere you look and has a major influence on how we view reality, therefore it’s important to know who controls the content released.
Big names such as Mark Zuckerberg (owner of Facebook and WordPress), and Rupert Murdoch who owns too many big media corporations to name but holds control of 70% of newspapers in Australia, have so much ownership in major media platforms. They hold imense power, to sculpt the perceptions of others and ourselves.
In 2012 Facebook conducted an experiment in which 700,000 Facebook users were used as prodigies, manipulated through the newsfeeds to see how it would affect their emotional state. It was deemed ethically inappropriate, as consent was not given by any of the users, it wasn’t even public knowledge until 2014. This created anxiety amongst users of Facebook, people felt they had been wrongly used and influenced. This is strangely ironic however because everyday people who consume media products are subject to the masterminds’ influential opinions.
Rupert Murdoch is undoubtedly one of the most powerful figures in media, CEO of News Corp, he has major command over what knowledge Australia learns of current affairs. His scandalous reputation stems from his biased form of writing; Rupert has been known to publish stories on political parties based on how close of friends they are. And lets not forget the News international phone hacking scandal, which Mr Murdoch faced allegations of hacking the mobile-phone devices of five public figures, with hoped to expose personal information. Rupert has a history of ignoring the ethical duties he has as a journalist, for the rise in consumer popularity. Rupert sacrifices truth and nobility.
This type of media control causes a loss of authenticity, all due to big names commanding too much power over a large sum of media sources. It indeed matters who owns the media, as it unfortunately stands as a form of propaganda that determines the reality we live in. What happened to the media’s responsibility to provide information that aspires to the truth? If media ownership diversity decreases, the information society consumes will continue being biased, trust in what we view will be compromised, and more and more barriers will be put up between Australian society and the truth.