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Australian Doctor Dissects Video Gaming Addiction



By: Dylan Colaneri

          With the advanced digital technology we have today, it is safe to say that everyone knows someone who plays video games. But could someone actually have a real addiction to playing video games? Well, that’s exactly what Dr. Daniel King of the University of Adelaide wants to uncover with his new research.

          King has noted in his extensive research that a treatment could be crafted for video gaming addiction “if a standard definition of video addiction was adopted.” In his research, he reviewed data on harmful video game behaviors from around the world. However, King says there’s no clear consensus on what constitutes pathological gaming.

          I found it intriguing that a doctor from Australia is interested in diving into the world’s video gaming problem. I never thought about the concept of video game addiction but the industry has been booming for the last thirty years, so the importance of this research is vital for future generations of gamers.

          Dr. King acknowledged that “although there are some similarities, video gaming is not the same as gambling.” The research from the university has also shown that “pathological video gaming has its own set of addictive components which can be distinct to internet gambling or other behaviors like online shopping and using social media.”

          Some of the harms identified from potential video game addiction included damaged relationships, careers, sleep and health. And because the video game industry is attached to the large media sector of Australia, I think it is important for people to digest this information and think about the way they play video games. This research is applicable to the worldwide audience and should continue to be developed for our future generations. What do you think about video game addiction? Is it something that should be studied and treated as much as gambling addictions?


University of Melbourne Launches “The Citizen”



By: Dylan Colaneri

          Having a strong journalism program is essential for any university that is seeking to impact the media industry. The University of Melbourne’ is doing just that. Recently, their Center for Advancing Journalism has launched The Citizen. The online publication is similar to many other large university publications and aims to incorporate stories written by both professional journalists and students who are in the Masters of Journalism program.

          I think this new addition at the University of Melbourne will help foster a new passion for budding journalists and increase the already popular media sector of Australia. The new editor-in-chief of this publication is Margaret Simons. Simons is also a freelance journalist and the director for the Center for Advancing Journalism at the university.

          Giving students the opportunity to work with professionals is vital for their growth as journalists and will certainly help foster new techniques and story-telling abilities. The Citizen will be funded through private, grant and university money but it mostly aims to “produce good journalism” from a wide range of topics.

          I believe it is important for young journalists to learn and experience the industry first hand prior to entering the “real world”. And because The Citizen will be linked to the Australian Press Council principles and the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance’s code of ethics, they are ensuring that their journalists are practicing the correct way and with the utmost integrity. Do you think it’s important for college-level journalists to have an experience like The Citizen prior to starting their careers?

New Zealand’s Most Attractive Industry in 2013



By: Dylan Colaneri

          The Annual Randstad Awards identify the most attractive companies in countries worldwide. The survey results are used to produce three kinds of reports focused on companies, countries and sectors. This year in New Zealand, the media industry has been named as the “most attractive industry” to work for at the 2013 Randstad Awards for the second year in a row. 

          The research from the annual Awards examines what New Zealanders consider most important when looking for a new employer, as well as the most attractive industries. The media industry has been evolving in New Zealand through the growth of social media. The industry received praise at the Awards for its interesting job content, employee benefits and competitive salary. 

          Similar to ABC and NBC in the United States, TVNZ (TV New Zealand) was named as the most attractive company in the media sector, and was recognized as the fourth most attractive employer in the country overall. Even with trends changing in the media industry, people remain positive about the job front and the future opportunities that it has to offer. 

          Paul Robinson, who is the director of the Randstad Awards in New Zealand, believes that the media sector is in a great position all-around and that companies will continue to maintain their momentum. With new and digital media booming throughout the world, it can only be estimated about how many new jobs and companies will emerge in New Zealand. What sector in the United States do you think is the most attractive industry to people?

Honoring the Legend of a New Zealand Journalist



By: Dylan Colaneri

          You could definitely make the argument that Peter Arnett is one of New Zealand’s greatest journalists. You could also make the argument that he is one of the world’s greatest journalists, too. With that being said, it is no surprise that one New Zealand film maker is currently raising money to make a film about New Zealand’s greatest war correspondent.

          Bruce Nixon has been working on a 90-minute documentary on the life of journalist Peter Arnett since 2011. Arnett was certainly from a rare breed of journalists–with many pegging him as having a fearless style to his work. Nixon wants his audience to understand how incredible Arnett’s life was and how meaningful his story-telling was for his country. 

          It has been reported that the future film has received an initial grant from the Invercargill City Council and was accepted into a 60-day fundraising scheme for the pilot stage of Boosted, a sponsorship website of the New Zealand Arts Foundation.

          Peter Arnett is currently 77 years old and a professor of journalism at Shantou University in China. His amazing career work covers everything from the crises of the Vietnam War to the fall of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. Arnett is certainly an icon in the New Zealand media community and was fortunate enough to win a Pulitzer Prize during his illustrious career. 

          What do you think about Peter Arnett being recognized for his work in a film? Should more journalists receive praise for their efforts to cover difficult topics and stories? 

UNESCO World Press Freedom Day in Australia



By: Dylan Colaneri

          The UNESCO World Press Freedom Day will take place on May 3rd and this year’s theme has the attention of many media professionals in Australia and New Zealand. The theme is sure to spark debate over the current media states of both countries: “Safe to speak: Securing freedom of expression in all media.” 

          Some of the topics that will be covered throughout the day’s lecture include the “exploration of the libertarian origins of press freedom and the advent of social media and citizen journalism.” The lecture will take place at Griffith University in Australia and will explore the ideas of truth and story-telling in journalism. 

          The presentation will be hosted by Dr. Mark Pearson who is a professor of Journalism and Social Media at Griffith University. Pearson has been an advocate of increased press freedom for a long time and is the Australian correspondent of the Paris-based global media freedom advocacy organization Reporters Sans Frontières (Reporters Without Borders).

          The presentation will certainly take aim at what the future for press freedom might look like in Australia–giving many media professionals a level forum for debate. Why do you think Australia has such a low ranking in overall press freedom (30th worldwide)? What are your opinions about allowing freedom of expression in all media, for certain country?

Social Media and the New Zealand Exchange



By: Dylan Colaneri

          Social media can be a powerful tool for any company. New Zealand and their Stock Exchange (NZX) are currently working together with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to “allow companies to disclose material information to the public through social media sites.” A recent Facebook post from Netflix was the influence for the SEC to clarify its rules in New Zealand. 

          Entrepreneur and Co-Founder of Snakk Media in New Zealand, Derek Handley, had several views on the SEC’s stance. Handley noted that “if a vice-presidential candidate for America can be announced via Twitter, then you should be able to use it to announce some news to the market.” 

          The SEC emphasized to listed exchange companies in New Zealand that they must receive a confirmation from the NZX prior to releasing material company information. The presence of social media is slowly changing the ways businessmen like Derek Handley conduct themselves and their ventures. He added that Americans in general are more active on social media than New Zealanders, and that his country needs to keep up with the change. 

          Rod Drury, executive at Xero in New Zealand, referred to social media as a “double-edged sword.” Like his fellow countryman Handley, Drury acknowledged the importance of  having a social media presence in business but also highlighted the need for companies to avoid gossip and rumor business news. 

          Do you think the growth of social media in New Zealand’s business culture will improve for the better? What are some examples of positive company social media use in America that New Zealand can look to for inspiration? 

Australian Media Team Impressed by Pakistan Press Freedom


By: Dylan Colaneri

In recent years, the press freedom in Australia (as noted by Reporters Without Borders) has been ranked as high as 30th worldwide. Newspaper delegations have sought out other countries to explore various degrees of press freedom and reportage. But few could have predicted what country Oliver Perret and Jenny Zang of the Sydney Epoch Times were most intrigued by–Pakistan.

Perret, who is a project manager for the Australian newspaper delegation, said that after visiting Pakistan his impressions of the government and press laws have changed dramatically–and for the better.

Because most Australian newspapers are owned by Rupert Murdoch, Perret quickly discovered that they didn’t have half the newspapers Pakistan had, noting that most of the newspapers in his country had a strong editorial standard. Jenny Zang, who also accompanied Perret, noted that the different media streams in Australian had different relations (Pro-US, Pro-China) unlike that of Pakistan. Zang was pleasantly surprised to find that the press was so free in Pakistan and that the reportage was completely unfettered in Pakistani newspapers. The media tandem added that the country itself was beautiful and unlike most of the associations linked to Pakistan through television and electronic media.

What do you think about Australia using Pakistan as a potential model for press freedom? Do you think it’s important for countries to explore other nation’s media systems to potentially improve their own?