March in March: why Australia's left aren't newsworthy

The ‘March in March’, a ‘statement of no confidence in the Abbott government’ according to its organisers, occurred in all state capitals and many regional areas around Australia over the weekend, culminating in a march in Canberra on Monday.

The real insight these protests offer is not into the Australian left’s dissatisfaction with the prime minister, Tony Abbott - everyone knows he makes them angry. Instead, it reflects that the moaning of the left has very little traction with the Australian media, or, for that matter, the Australian public.

The position of the social-media-savvy protesters is that the mainstream media has done a disservice to the Australian people by not covering the marches, which they claim drew 100,000 people across all state capitals and other major cities. What they don’t realise is that their lack of coverage is simply the result of no one outside their Twitter-updating bubble giving two hoots about what they have to say.

A Sydney-based blogger complained that a rugby-league game, attended by fewer than 10,000 people, gained more coverage in Monday’s Sydney Morning Herald than the March in March. While this may come as a surprise to the self-righteous Twitterati, it is completely understandable that a football game was followed more closely than these protests. Indeed, the March in March reflects nothing more than the left’s vitriolic hatred of Abbott, something everyone knew about already.

The protester’s incredulity at their lack of airtime is a reflection of the divide between the Abbott-despising green left and the rest of Australia, who only six months ago voted resoundingly in favour of Abbott and the coalition he leads. Being ignored by the mainstream media is not some conspiracy against the Australian left, as some have suggested; it merely shows how out-of-touch the tweeting Aussie elite really are. 

Charlie Pearson is a graduate of the University of Queensland and is currently interning at spiked.

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