Australia’s media watchdog has sniffed out another rat that failed to accurately report the truth and differentiate opinions from facts. This time, the rat is Sky News Australia — colour me shocked.
Four episodes of Sky News Australia program Outsiders that were part of the “Weather and the Sceptics Ice-Age Watch” series hosted by Rowan Dean have been named and shamed by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
They were called out for presenting climate change falsehoods as facts and purposely withholding data to suit the host’s anti-climate change agenda.
ACMA investigated Outsiders after a string of complaints from former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2021.
Speaking of former Prime Ministers, the current co-chair of ACMA is Malcolm Turnbull, who slammed Murdoch’s Sky News Australia as a platform used for “systematically spreading lies and disinformation with terrible consequences for our democracies and in this case the climate.”
I never thought I’d agree with Turnbull, but I guess he’s turnbulled over a new leaf.
“This is a significant finding from ACMA about Sky’s false and inaccurate climate change coverage,” he said in a statement.
“Sky will be required to report on the actions it has taken in response to the findings, including training for its staff.
“At long last they are being held to account.”
It’s kinda hot to see a former leader of the Liberals turn his back on one of the biggest Liberal-supporting organisations in the country. I’ll give the man that and only that (after all, it is in his new job description to scrutinise Sky News when it faulters).
Per The Guardian Australia, false claims made by Rowan Dean on the program included:
- Informing viewers that former UK PM Boris Johnson mandated the country to replace gas heaters with “inefficient eco heat pumps” despite the fact that no such mandate existed.
- Using areas in Japan to prove there was “no warming in 30 years” without giving the audience the full data from Japan’s own weather agency.
- Telling audience members that there had “never been so much coral” in the Great Barrier Reef, which was currently “looking fantastic”, despite the fact that reports of coral increases from the Australian Maritime Insitute came alongside details of how the whole area faced great threat and coral recovery was still fragile.
So yeah, he kinda went a bit rogue there, hey?
It’s nice to see Sky News Australia get taken down a peg.