Allow me to explain.
I recently wrote an article titled “Arrest Of Australian Journalist Sends Chill Across Democratic World”, in response to events in Australia last week.
I received a message a short time later from a reliable source in Australia that my article contained factual errors, and not just one or two, it was rife with misinformation.
I was a little put off at first, I mean it’s not like me to thoroughly research something so that this kind of thing never happens. I had read numerous articles and watched news clips, but then something occurred to me. Just who were my sources? They were “reputable” mainstream media outlets.
After going back and taking a closer, more critical look at things, as well as having a conversation with my very astute Australian source, it became clear to me that there is another aspect to this story that also needs to be addressed.
This story is not only about the suppression of the free press by the government. It also highlights the need for a reliable free press, a press that is dedicated strictly to covering a story in an effort to report the truth. Today’s media outlets are no longer beholden to the truth, but rather to shareholders and special interests. It is the reason the phrase “fake news” exists today.
I do not want to add to the confusion and the narrative. I could just as easily kept the article up if my motivation was only to show support for the press. It fit their narrative perfectly. But my motivation is the truth, and if the information coming from that press does not accurately reflect the truth, then it is difficult for me to be a cheerleader for them.
As a journalist I obviously support freedom of the press, but I also support the notion that what that press reports will be the truth. A truthful press is just as crucial to a functioning democracy as the right to its freedom. The people rely on the press to give them that truth, and what they are getting instead is manipulated.
I will be continuing to watch the situation in Australia and I will have something to write about it soon. In the meantime, I apologize for any confusion this may have caused as well as for publishing something that was counter to what you expect from me. I will make every effort to ensure this does not happen again in the future.