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A Land Without Giants

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By now, we’re accustomed to hearing all kinds of predictions (and pronouncements) of the death of the media giant. But what would David be without Goliath?

In a discussion sparked by media historian Bridget Griffen-Foley’s new book, A Companion to the Australian Media — a comprehensive survey drawing on 300 industry experts and professionals — we’re taking stock of the information economy. In particular, we’re taking the most pessimistic forecasts to their hypothetical conclusions, and asking: what would Australia’s media landscape look like without its biggest players?

Griffen-Foley leads a panel comprising The Saturday Paper founding editor Erik Jensen, New Matilda editor Chris Graham and respected journalist and editor Michelle Grattan (currently chief political correspondent for The Conversation) through the industry’s most pressing questions.

What would happen if smaller operators and startups weren’t able to feed off the newsrooms of Big Media — the engines that drive news cycles across radio, TV and the internet? Amidst all the commentary, what are the real risks and opportunities facing publishers? Is the media in a state of ‘disruptive innovation’ … or panic? And has anyone yet figured out how to make investigative journalism financially sustainable?

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