Lazy reporting about housing crisis makes matters worse

You know what else is part of the housing affordability crisis?

Lazy reporters and news organisations uncritically repeating whatever self-interested lobbyists tell them. Memo journalists: the HIA is a lobby group whose sole aim is to make more money for its members. So is the REIV. They do not represent young homebuyers. Their “solutions” are transparently for their own benefit at the expense of the rest of us.

They do not deserve a free ride!

UPDATE: Come to think of it, who (apart from crabby lefty bloggers like me) is advocating for the interests of young homebuyers? If there isn’t such a lobby group, someone should set one up. Although with what money (the whole point is that they hardly have any) and in what location (the problem being that they can’t afford one) I don’t know. The Homebuyers’ Advocacy Group (HAG), sending out press releases on stolen office stationery in lunch-breaks and after 6.30pm, from someone’s parents’ shed…

6 responses to “Lazy reporting about housing crisis makes matters worse

  1. I don’t think it is a “free” ride per se, Lefty. I think you’ll find they pay someone fairly well – usually the advertising department execs who hold the journos jobs over their heads if they don’t find something smarmy to say about the companies. The poor news editors are usually the meat in the sandwich and they cop it if the copy doesn’t suit the advertiser, I know more than one good journo/editor who has had to part company with their job for the advertising department gods whim.
    Happens all the time with a lot of companies and the practice of making a media company look like its news-based when it is really advertising oriented is pretty common it’s a fine line in the MSM, anyway.
    Additionally, journos don’t have to be registered or qualified to work – in fact some companies prefer not to have ethics (and law) come into the equation. So advertising staff can readily pass themselves off as journos but ads aint news!
    As I understand it, it is only illegal to pass off ads as news with regards to the percentage of the content that is made up of ads and to put advertorials
    in as news copy without them being clearly marked as “advertisements.” There is a lot of unmonitored lawlessness going on out there Lefty although I wouldn’t want to speculate about this particular instance – busy journos on slow days use media releases from anyone as they pedal their little mousie wheels around in their cubicles. Big media companies don’t want to recruit independent minded or inquiring journos these days who hunt out good stories because they don’t get enough done quickly enough for the 24-7 turn around. It is a cultural thing that feeds downward through an organization.

  2. jordanrastrick

    While advertising revenue sometimes corrupts editorial judgement, dailymagnet, I think you’re jumping the gun here and attributing to malice what is better explained by stupidity. Specfically, this case concerns is the ABC website. So, government funded, with no advertisers.

    The fact is that journalists are all under-resourced these days, beause the new media is in the process of cannibalising every aspect of the old. When journalists parrot press releases of lobby groups, its usually because they simply lack the time to do their jobs at the same standard that their predecessors would have.

  3. “There is a lot of unmonitored lawlessness going on out there Lefty although I wouldn’t want to speculate about this particular instance”

    You need to read the copy more thoroughly, Jordan. I don’t really need you to try to tell me what’s happening in my own industry – but thanks for trying to break it down for me.

  4. jordanrastrick

    I apologize for missing your qualification about that your comments were entirely generic and not about the example Jeremy was discussing. In my defense, it was a fair way into your post, and I was probably reading and responding on my phone, to boot.

    I assume you’re not suggesting I should refrain from disagreeing with you about the topic of journalism just because you happen to be a journalist, especially when I wasn’t even aware of this fact. As it happens, I’m not one, but I do have a fair bit of personal familiarity with journalism.

  5. You are definitely onto sonething with this, EVERYONE benefits from lower house prices – EVERYONE!!

    I don’t think the HIA should be spruiking property prices, because the housing bubble depresses the housing market. Prices have gone up, but construction starts have been falling. Affordability stimulates the housing construction activity. They can het a brief stimuls from FHBG and suchlike, but invariably that is a double edged sword because it kills affordability which depresses contruction activity further; so it is vicious cycle.

    The Real Estate industry does spruik house prices, but only because that is the only way two generations of real Estate salesmen have been trained to close the deal – “but now because prices are going up.” trying their best to stampede buyers into making a hasty decision.

  6. Funny. Andrew Bolt was talking about housing affordability today, too.

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