On ABC Radio’s Counterpoint, Monday 26 March:
The Murray Mouth Controversy
Last week on ABC TV’s Media Watch presenter Jonathan Holmes criticized journalists and radio hosts who publicised a new report on the Murray mouth without describing the affiliations of it’s author and publisher. The author was Dr Jennifer Marohasy and the organisation was The Australian Environment Foundation. Both could be described as conservative in context of the current Australian debate on the environment. Dr Marohasy has been a spokesperson for a wealthy irrigator, and the AEF has received money from companies such as Murray Irrigation. Holmes thought if readers and listeners knew these things, it might change the way they thought about the report’s contents.
However, what many people have been saying since last week is that Media Watch is hypocritical, because it only criticizes the right and not the left in these matters. For example, many scientists who support the orthodoxy on global warming have received funding for their work, from private and public sources. Even though this is rarely acknowledged when these experts appear in the media, Media Watch has never once criticised any journalist or presenter for this non-disclosure. To discuss this, and also her report on the Murray, Dr Jennifer Marohasy.