Akira Lasker

About Akira Lasker

Akira Lasker is a freelance writer and artist with an interest into Australian-Asian relations and conceptions of ethnicity in Australia. He is currently formalising this interest as an undergraduate in the B Visual Arts at The University of Sydney.

S&M: ALP media pulpit will only preach to the converted

The national secretary of the ALP, George Wright, announced last week that the embattled Opposition will start their very own news outlet with Labor members’ subscriptions.

Finally, we will get our chance to spread the good word out to the world!

Yeah right…

As an offering to help the “Labor message find its way into mainstream news”, it’s an admirable and exciting development for what has been an increasingly right-wing dominated media machine – I’d like a break from the populist outrage of a News Corp sharpening its editorial pitchfork for yet another dung slinging contest with the Labor Party.

But, as an ALP voter myself, I’m not convinced that this is a move in the right direction. If you believe that this going to “save” the Labor message, you’d be sadly mistaken because, frankly, people are tired of being told how to vote.

And I really can’t see myself enjoying the political rantings of Bill Shorten and co anymore than Murdoch’s tired rags.

I’d much rather have some balanced news reporting and be able to form my own damned opinion than have some drivel force-fed to me and I’d be willing to bet that it is far less likely that someone would listen to an alternative point of view that contradicts their own if it is segregated into its own political cesspool (like Murdoch) rather than if it is meaningfully integrated into a considerate debate.

For a party still scarred by the last few years of media scandals – the carbon tax, the Home Insulation Scheme, Gillard’s war on the media et cetera – this is going to be far more important, for many voters still strongly remember these years and are naturally going to resist a news outlet dedicated to the party they loathe.

In summary, this little stunt will amount to not much more than “preaching to the converted.”

If Labor stalwarts want to get the message out to the wider public, they need to find a way to create a fruitful dialogue with other opposing views, rather than insulating themselves from opposition via a Labor generated and run media outelt.

And, for this reason, “Crikey Labor” is starting to sound more and more like mainstream media on political steroids, complete with raging generalisations and killer headlines, than a reasonable alternative to anything else.

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