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Herald Sun Found Guilty of Irresponsible Journalism and Seriously Misleading Readers

Senator Brown, 4th March 2005 The Australian Press Council has labelled a Herald Sun news article attacking the Greens policies in last year’s election campaign ‘irresponsible journalism’ which ‘seriously misled’ readers and damaged the Greens.

The high profile article, which was widely distributed by Greens opponents in several states, including Tasmanian loggers, was written by senior Herald Sun journalist Gerard McManus, ‘in discussions with an election coverage editor’.

The article came a day after Prime Minister Howard flagged an expose of ‘kooky’ Greens polices. It continues to be used by the Liberal Party, most recently in WA election pamphlets.

The Herald Sun is part of the Murdoch stable.

“The Press Council adjudication speaks for itself,” Greens Senator Bob Brown said.

“This manufactured news, which misled readers of Australia’s highest circulation daily, is a disgrace to the profession of journalism.

“It perverted democracy. When a journalist misinforms readers on their way to the ballot box democracy is sacrificed.

“This was no accident or mistake. The aim was to attack the Greens, not through the editorial column, but through the news pages. The outcome of the false concoction of the Greens policies was to lose our party tens of thousands of votes and, in my calculation, seats in parliament.

“The Herald Sun failed to be faithful to its own readers,” Senator Brown said.

Further information: Ben Oquist 02 62773170 or 0419704095

Press release 01.09.04 What the Greens Really Really Stand For

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Last modified 09-04-05 02:42 PM