Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has accused the mainstream media of letting down the Australian public by not being sufficiently interested in the National Broadband Network.
The Wentworth MP told an NBN industry forum in Sydney on Monday that “a combination of indolence and a lack of curiosity” rather than bias contributed to the “woeful” coverage of broadband.
“I have to say that by and large the standard of reporting of technology and broadband by the mainstream media has been woeful,” he said.
“If the Australian public are misinformed about these issues, it was in large part a consequence of the unwillingness of the mainstream media to pay any attention to what is really going on in the industry.”
There had been no interest in people who were hands on with the NBN and the mainstream media had “really, really let the country down”, Mr Turnbull said.
His frank comments were in response to a question on whether he would release his blue book – public servant information provided to the incoming coalition government.
Mr Turnbull said it was important that public servant advice to ministers was frank and fearless.
“If every bit of written advice public servants gave ministers was published, journalists would have a field day,” he said.
“It would be a field day for not very long because all the advice would then be given orally because there needs to be a degree of candour.
“What is relevant in terms of the NBN is getting the facts out there.”