"PRINT and online news will come under direct federal government oversight for the first time under proposals issued yesterday to create a statutory regulator with the power to prosecute media companies in the courts.
The historic change to media law would break with tradition by using government funds to replace an industry council that acts on complaints, in a move fiercely opposed by companies as a threat to the freedom of the press.
The proposals, issued yesterday by Communications Minister Stephen Conroy, also seek to widen the scope of federal oversight to cover print, online, radio and TV within a single regulator for the first time.
Bloggers and other online authors would also be captured by a regime applying to any news site that gets more than 15,000 hits a year, a benchmark labelled "seriously dopey" by one site operator." [italics mine]
Incredibly, even the virtual old manse and yours truly could be under "direct government oversight" (i.e. subject to censorship of views deemed politically incorrect) under these proposed laws. Why, if the bureaucracy were efficient, we might be worried! Still, discretion being the better part of valour, it might soon be prudent to resurrect my nom de plume.
Read all about it here.