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June 24, 2019

Waging war: A look back on this weeks Federal Election chatter

Labor’s pledge to introduce real increases to the minimum wage is if it wins the Federal Election, and the simmering undercurrents of a cultural war, have been the standout campaign themes this week.

The determined pursuit of fairness has been a fixture of the Australian political landscape for decades, yet cultural wars are a newer phenomenon. The idiom of today suggests workers are competing with bosses and businesses who seek to keep to salaries as low as possible. The current atmosphere of business-bashing was first introduced by the Coalition, who targeted the unpopular banking sector with extra taxes. More recently, Labor have rejected the longstanding policy framework of a globally competitive economy, dynamic labour market, and lower taxes, in favour of a social safety net.

For weeks, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has branded the upcoming election as a “referendum on wages”, putting forward the simple argument that ‘‘no Australian working full-time should be living in poverty’’. Meanwhile, the Coalition is expected to announce another round of income tax cuts ahead of the Budget.

Unions have also chimed in, with the Australian Council of Trade Unions calling for a $73 a week increase to the minimum wage over two years in the pursuit of a “living wage”. Labor quickly distanced itself from the Trade Union’s push, suggesting the final verdict should instead come from the Fair Work Commission. The core assumption for the Commission will be that the current hourly rate of $18.93 must rise – however Labor is yet to reveal any guidelines detailing how this increase would be assessed.


Unsurprisingly, the Council of Small Business of Australia pushed back, stating increased wages would force more businesses to incur payroll tax, and consequently be forced to look at ways to absorb costs; either through increased prices or cutting workers’ hours. Similar sentiments were voiced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who accused Labor of engaging in the politics of envy, and warning that Bill Shorten’s plans would result in the dismissal of many workers.

Most recently, the Australian Industry Group proposed a 2 per cent increase to keep wages in line with inflation, meaning the 2.23 million Australians earning $19 an hour would see just enough extra cash in their pay packets to buy an upsized meal at McDonald’s.

If the next Federal Election is truly a referendum on wages, the key question for voters should be; Are the market determined rates fair and just, or should the government intervene?

Visit www.isentia.com/your-insight-into-the-federal-election for more information or get in touch with our team to discuss your needs.

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The Federal Election has been announced and with 33 days of campaigning we thought it would be interesting to compare the number of mentions of the political parties over the past 2 weeks. Analysis from our media intelligence has given insight into Labor having a larger volume of media coverage across all media types in comparison to other political parties.

Examining coverage, we found the ‘Election’ had been the subject of over 33,000 media items and online being the preferred media type.

In terms of political parties, Labor has had a significant number of mentions of broadcast coverage whereas the Coalition had more mentions across more traditional media such as print, during the two-week period. Overall, Labor has had a decent lead over the Coalition in the number of mentions across broadcast, online and print combined during this time.

Interestingly, social mentions over Twitter, Facebook and YouTube were more prominent with individual parliamentarians rather than mentions of political parties. These items mentioned more controversial statements or social ‘worthy’ statements which generated these mentions.

It was found the Coalition had considerably more social mentions over Labor when searching for the parliamentarian’s name or their handle. One Nation were also in the mix, with more social mentions compared to the Greens and the Nationals combined.

With the data analysis we have uncovered, could this be insight into who will win the election on May 18?

If you would like to keep up-to-date for the remainder of the Federal Election campaign, our exclusive Federal Election briefing can ensure you're across all campaign announcements, funding commitments, policy updates and polling figures. If you would like to learn more about this service, get in touch with our team to discuss your needs.

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Blog
How will media shape the Federal Election outcome?

With 33 days of campaigning left, we compare the number of mentions of the political parties over the past 2 weeks surrunding the Federal Election

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Stay on top of the federal election coverage

During an election, the volume of media coverage on political promises and topical debates increases. This can have a positive or negative impact on your organisation.

With our comprehensive federal election briefing, you can monitor and track relevant media data to gain insight into the federal election.

Understand your organisation, your competitors, your industry and the important topics. Understand the media data that shapes each campaign day.

From policy, campaign and program announcements to funding commitments and latest polling figures we can ensure you're kept up to date.

Download your sample below or get in touch with us to today!

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Whitepaper
Your insight into the federal election

During an election, the volume of media coverage on political promises and topical debates increases greatly, which can have a significant impact on your organisation. As such, it’s imperative to monitor and track relevant media data so you can understand who’s saying what about your organisation, your competitors, your industry, and any other topic that’s important to you and your organisation.

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Isentia, a leading provider of media intelligence and analysis services, is proud to announce the launch of “The Conversation of Sport: Representation of Women in Sports News Coverage,” in partnership with the Office of Women in Sport and Recreation. This research aims to bring awareness to gender inequality in sports, and attention to address the underrepresentation of women in sports media.

The purpose of this research is to establish a baseline of the current coverage of women’s sport and women in sport in Victoria, providing crucial data to advocate for improved representation moving forward. Isentia's expertise in media monitoring and analysis plays a pivotal role in gathering independent, transparent data to assess the current landscape accurately.

"Equal representation in sport is key in shaping the way we view the world…This research represents a key step forward in reducing the gap in coverage for women in sports news. It directly supports the media and sporting organisations with independent, transparent data of current performance in this space.," said Ros Spence Minister for Community Sport

This research shows that the coverage of women’s sport in the media remains significantly lower than that of men’s sport, with only 15% of sports news coverage in Victoria focusing on women’s sport in 2022-23. Isentia's collaboration with Change Our Game aims to highlight this disparity by empowering media outlets with the data and tools necessary to increase the visibility of women in sports news.

Isentia and its partners envision a future where strong representation of women in sports media contributes to the professionalisation of women’s elite sport, dismantles limiting stereotypes, and promotes inclusivity at both the elite and community sport levels. This collaboration sets the stage for a more equitable and diverse sports media landscape, where the stories and achievements of women athletes are celebrated, amplified and contribute to a stronger ecosystem for women's sport.

"Through our partnership with OWSR, we are hopeful that this research will shine a light on the current state of play of sports news, and the impact this can have on the support and participation in women’s sport. While the findings are confronting, having this baseline will help drive positive change." said Ngaire Crawford for Director of Insights and Research, Isentia. 

"We believe that by working together, we can drive meaningful change and create a more inclusive sporting environment for women and girls everywhere."

What We Hope For the Future:

Through our partnership with Change Our Game and the Victorian Government, we hope to pave the way for a future where women in sport are celebrated and recognized on equal footing with their male counterparts in the media. By increasing the visibility and representation of women in sports media, we aim to inspire the next generation of athletes, journalists and content creators and drive positive change towards a more inclusive and equitable sporting landscape. Together, we can create a world where every athlete, regardless of gender, has the opportunity to thrive and succeed.

About Change Our Game:

Change Our Game is an initiative by the Victorian Government aimed at achieving gender equality in sport and active recreation. Through advocacy, funding, and partnerships, Change Our Game works to address systemic barriers and promote inclusivity and diversity across all levels of sport.

About Isentia:

Isentia is a leading provider of media intelligence and analysis services, helping organisations make informed decisions based on actionable insights from media data. With a comprehensive suite of solutions, including media monitoring, analysis, and insights, Isentia empowers clients to stay ahead in an ever-evolving media landscape.

Select to be taken to Change Our Game's full report

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Blog
Isentia co-launches report: Representation of Women in Sports Coverage 2022-23

Isentia, a leading provider of media intelligence and analysis services, is proud to announce the launch of “The Conversation of Sport: Representation of Women in Sports News Coverage,” in partnership with the Office of Women in Sport and Recreation. This research aims to bring awareness to gender inequality in sports, and attention to address the […]

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The story around supermarket prices has been evolving for a number of months, finally reaching an inflection point as the Woolworth’s CEO appeared in a challenging interview with Four Corners and then announced his upcoming retirement only two days later.This chain of events underscores the critical importance of understanding the connections made by broadcast media, as they can significantly influence public perceptions and shape the narrative surrounding key industry players.

https://www.reddit.com/r/PublicRelations/comments/1aukych/australia_woolies_ceo_interview_mishap/?share_id=S-JDSwqI-UlHg_mIeTlkg&utm_content=2&utm_medium=ios_app&utm_name=ioscss&utm_source=share&utm_term=1

It was only the latest in a series of media items to seize Australia’s attention, and cast the nation’s supermarkets into something of a PR and Comms crisis.

And yet, viewing events through this framing also only gives a partial picture. As the discussion surrounding the impact of supermarkets on the rising cost of living intensifies, we've observed a notable surge in the usage of terms such as 'shrinkflation' and 'skimpflation'. Reaching back even further, we can see how the topics attained a gradually greater place on Australian news and social channels. Shrinkflation and skimpflation are tactics employed by supermarkets during economic challenges. Shrinkflation involves reducing product sizes while maintaining prices, subtly passing on costs to consumers. Skimpflation maintains product sizes but compromises on quality to preserve profit margins. These strategies often frustrate supermarket shoppers, especially during economic strains like inflation.

Clearly, the topic has become ubiquitous. But if we want to understand how information and perceptions have been communicated to mainstream Australian audiences, then it becomes vitally important to pay particular attention to broadcast media. 

Broadcast media (which includes television, radio and podcasts)  plays a pivotal role in shaping public discourse and influencing perceptions, particularly on pressing issues such as the cost of living crisis. 

Using Isentia to monitor these data sources, we gain valuable insights into their contribution to consumer attitudes. From identifying which organisations are most associated with the issue to pinpointing key public figures and preferred channels within radio and TV, broadcast media monitoring allows us to understand the complex dynamics that shape public opinion.

It’s the oldest of these media types which accounts for the most mentions of the supermarket crisis. Beyond reporting updates on the senate inquiry and government actions, radio excels in facilitating in-depth conversations between hosts and listeners, which surfaces more individual consumer stories than television or podcasts can match.

ABC's predominant coverage of the topic corresponds with the network's content strategy. Major programs such as the Supermarket Four Corners special and podcasts like The Briefing attract substantial listenership and garner attention from other channels. Channel 7, in addition to delivering key news updates, focuses on the shopper experience within supermarkets, shedding light on everyday challenges faced by audiences, such as navigating shrinkflation and skimpflation tactics.

Understanding the majority share of broadcast channels within this topic is important as it reflects who has the loudest voice, and is most persistently advancing a certain narrative or way of framing the situation. 

Coles and Woolworths dominate the conversation, reflecting their prominent presence in the retail landscape. Their widespread accessibility and familiarity to consumers make them prime subjects for discussion in the context of rising costs and economic pressures. 

Conversely, Aldi and IGA, while still significant players in the grocery market, may receive comparatively less focus in these discussions. Aldi's reputation for offering lower-priced alternatives and IGA's decentralised business model, with independently owned stores, may also contribute to their reduced presence in conversations about supermarket practices during times of economic strain. 

Each channel and network approaches discussions about supermarket groups differently. While Coles and Woolworths understandably dominate each station's broadcasts, the precise balance (and the time afforded to Adi and IGA) is revealing.

For instance, 4BC has encouraged audiences to diversify their shopping habits, with one 4BC broadcaster highlighting that "Aldi and IGA are actually doing more than the other two to really help enormously with the cost of living."

In the discourse on supermarket practices during the cost of living crisis, a number key figures emerge across broadcast channels. Anthony Albanese, the Australian Prime Minister, is predictably prominent on just about every channel, particularly broadcaster 2SM. 

All of them, that is, apart from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), which spotlights Allan Fels, an economist and former ACCC chair who has analysed price gouging by major corporations. Other notable politicians mentioned include Treasurer Jim Chalmers, Craig Emerson, Steven Miles, and David Littleproud. 

Media's focus on these figures is crucial for shaping public discourse and policy responses amid economic pressures. While supermarkets are often discussed as a key antagonist in the cost of living crisis, they are increasingly being viewed in the context of potential solutions, particularly regarding government policy to regulate supermarket giants.

At the same time, focus does not only fall on the prominent individuals driving business decisions and policymaking. Country Hour (NSW), for instance, focused a story on cherry grower Michael Cuneo, who ceased selling to supermarkets after he made a financial loss on a shipment of fruit. And it was this story that achieved the greatest media reach of any radio content on the topic.  

Clearly then, the topic has not played out in any one way across any one channel. The prominence of key figures and top broadcast channels in this conversation underscores the importance of understanding how media coverage impacts public discourse and regulatory decisions. Isentia's broadcast capabilities offer unparalleled insight into the role of broadcast media in shaping the narrative surrounding supermarket practices. By harnessing Isentia's monitoring and analysis tools, organisations can gain deep insights into how influential discourse and coverage can impact an industry. 

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Blog
How Australian broadcast media has shaped the cost of living crisis narrative

The story around supermarket prices has been evolving for a number of months, finally reaching an inflection point as the Woolworth’s CEO appeared in a challenging interview with Four Corners and then announced his upcoming retirement only two days later.This chain of events underscores the critical importance of understanding the connections made by broadcast media, […]

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