Today media companies from all over Australia unite in an unprecedented action to fight for press freedoms. The campaign was launched on Sunday night with television advertisements nationwide. Australia’s Right To Know coalition of more than a dozen of the nation’s top media companies and industry organisations is campaigning for change to six critical areas of law that is allowing a veil of secrecy to being thrown over matters important to all Australians. Seeking change after police raids on journalists and whistleblowers this year, the media industry is widening the argument over the “right to know” by focusing on the harm to Australians if abuse and corruption are never exposed.
In one campaign advertisement, Australians are told of the federal government’s refusal to disclose the aged care homes responsible for more than 4,000 reports of assaults of residents last year. Attorney-General Christian Porter said there were “sensible” changes to be considered but he objected to wide exemptions for journalists from national security and secrecy laws, including the regime to monitor metadata. „People should not be charged for doing their job,” Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese said on Sunday. The campaign is backed by whistleblowers and consumer advocates who have helped expose government inaction or corporate misconduct in the past.