The Nine-Fairfax Media deal, billed as the biggest shakeup in the Australian media landscape for decades, was widely anticipated once the Turnbull government repealed the main anti-concentration laws in 2017. It may well result in the loss of a highly respected independent quality media voice. It has certainly fired the starting gun on a new phase of media concentration.
It’s the latest and arguably the most dramatic episode in the media concentration saga in Australia. This is already among the most concentrated media markets in the world, behind countries like China and Egypt. These developments signal that media diversity policies need a major overhaul to take account of the impact of the media-tech platform giants on traditional news media businesses.