Date of this Version
Several models of media regulation have developed in Australia, from the Australian Broadcasting Authority's rarely exercised legislative muscle through to the Australian Press Council, the watchdog regarded as having a hearty bark but no bite. In between there have been low profile MEAA judiciary committees, in-house codes of conduct, and even a failed experiment with a newspaper ombudsman. Some argue that the ABC's Media Watch program has been the most effective regulator of them all. What has happened with all these regulatory mechanisms and what kind of regulatory model best suits the Australian news media today? This paper reviews the attempts at governmental and self-regulation and proposes a self-funded model which stands to offer a realistic check on media excesses without further government interference.