Dear Convergence Review,
You wouldn’t let a single person own every home or part of every home in Australia, not even every home in a single city. Why not? Well it would make us all slaves to the owner. Getting them fixed only when the owner agreed, having to live in the type of place best for the owner, and paying whatever rent the owner wished. Even if we were allowed to own homes we wouldn’t be able to afford it, we wouldn’t have any hope of breaking out of the system.
Like wise we don’t let single individuals or companies have own over all manner of things where the public benefit is at stake.
Can you imagine an Australia where Myer was the only clothes shop, Woolworths the only supermarket. These companies would no longer be driven not by the market but instead at their own discretion. We would wear only what Myer thought was best, and eat only what Woolworths cared to sell.
Do we legislate to prevent any of these companies taking such a position? Well, no, but only because we haven’t had to.
Right now it seems we have to with media. Am i against making money? No. Am I against Rupert Murdock making money? No. Am I against a single person or company owning – or even having the potential for owning – all of the media. You bet!
The same reason I shop at Myer, David Jones, Kmart, Target, plus the hundreds of other shops, why I buy groceries from Woolworths, Coles, IGA, farmers markets, 7eleven, plus all the other little shops.
An open marketplace is my right. It is all our right. No individual’s or company’s right to ownership is greater. That would be a monopoly, which is wrong. Yes it’s that simple.
Emailed to Convergence Review 18/01/2012 via avaaz.org