The petition to parliament was launched by former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd more than three weeks ago and ended on Wednesday. It calls on a Royal Commission – Australia’s highest form of public investigation – to “investigate threats to media diversity.” It is also charged media businesses encourage “news that is intentionally polarized and politically manipulated.”
“We are particularly concerned that Australia’s printed media is being overwhelmed by News Corporation, founded by Fox News billionaire Rupert Murdoch, with about two-thirds of daily newspaper readership.” , the petition said. “This power is often used to attack rivals in business and politics by blending editorial views with news reporting.”
News Corp Australia did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Publisher is one of the largest and owned publisher in the country Australian newspapers and tabloids such as The Daily Telegraph and The Herald Sun.
Rudd used Social media to solicit feedback to request.
The petition will likely be submitted to the Australian House of Representatives, but lawmakers is not required to act on it.
“Calling the Murdoch media empire a press organization committed to bringing you fair and balanced news around the world today has become a joke,” Rudd said.
Murdoch’s media empire spans the globe, and its role also faces scrutiny in the UK, where News Corp owns newspapers including The Sun and The Times.
Like many news organizations, News Corp Australia is also dealing with its business disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
– Michelle Toh contributed to this report.