Pacific Media Watch

4 March 2020

AUSTRALIA: Closure of AAP is yet another blow to public interest journalism

Lukas Coch’s Walkley Award-winning picture of Linda Burney in blue high heels in the air celebrating the passage of the marriage equality law in 2017. Image: AAP

By Alexandra Wake of RMIT University
MELBOURNE (The Conversation/Asia Pacific Report/Pacific Media Watch): Australia’s news landscape, and the ability of citizens to access quality journalism, has been dealt a major blow by the announcement the Australian Associated Press is closing, with the loss of 180 journalism jobs.

Although AAP reporters and editors are generally not household names, the wire service has provided the backbone of news content for the country since 1935, ensuring every newspaper (and therefore every citizen) has had access to solid reliable reports on matters of national significance.

All news outlets have relied on AAP’s network of local and international journalists to provide stories from areas where their own correspondents could not go, from the courts to parliament and everywhere in between.

READ MORE: Media Files: What does the Nine Fairfax merger mean for diversity and quality journalism?

Despite a shrinking number of journalists in recent years and a rapid decrease in funding subscriptions, AAP continued to stand by its mission to provide news without political partisanship or bias. Speed was essential for the agency, but accuracy was even more important.

Republished with permission under a Creative Commons licence - read full article.

Pacific Media Watch

PMC's media monitoring service

Pacific Media Watch is compiled for the Pacific Media Centre as a regional media freedom and educational resource by a network of journalists, students, stringers and commentators. (cc) Creative Commons