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Neil Mitchell explains why ‘witch hunt’ inquiry will be a ‘complete waste of time’

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Neil Mitchell says the Senate inquiry into Australia’s media ownership and its impact on democracy will be a “witch hunt” and complete waste of time.

It comes after former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd started an online petition that collected more than 500,000 signatures, calling for a Royal Commission to examine the influence of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation.

Another former leader, Malcolm Turnbull, has also been vocal about the issue in recent days.

“Whenever a politician looks into the media, they look at self-interest,” Neil Mitchell said.

“How do I silence an enemy, or look after a mate.

“I think it’s wrong Rupert Murdoch’s company owns nearly 70 per cent of newspaper circulation, but the Labor Party, under Bob Hawke and Paul Keating, gave it to him for exactly the reason I’m raising.”

The 3AW Mornings host said the Senate inquiry, led by Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, would have a “self-serving agenda” with “very little understanding” about how media actually worked.

Nine newspaper columnist Jenna Price, a journalism academic, also shared her thoughts on the matter.

“Like you, I don’t think the inquiry will do much but it might air some dirty laundry,” she said.

“It’s always good to air the dirty laundry, wash the dirty laundry, get some sunlight on the dirty laundry and move on.

“I think, when it comes to an attack on democracy, I think the Murdoch newspapers, and Murdoch media in general, has a real problem with climate change coverage.”

A debate ensued from there!

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