New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced her government’s plans to fund journalism that will combat “misinformation” about Covid-19 on social media.
According to a government website, Ardern’s $55 million Public Interest Journalism Fund will be split across three years, and will “support a healthy democracy” by keeping New Zealanders “informed and engaged.”
During a speech delivered at the Summit for Democracy last week, a virtual event held by US President Joe Biden and attended by more than 100 world leaders, Ardern noted the purpose of the package was to combat information about Covid-19 that is contrary to the state-approved narrative.
“We’ve seen the spread of misinformation on Covid-19, particularly through social media.”
“We had to act, so we made it a priority to establish a public interest journalism fund to help our media to continue to produce stories that keep New Zealander’s informed.”
In May 2020, Ardern urged New Zealanders to dismiss any information relating to Covid that has not come from her government saying, “we will continue to be your single source of truth.”
So, let’s contrast all this with a 1980 BBC interview with Wang Chang Yun, the then director of the New China News Agency, and what do we have, but the birth of Orwell’s ‘Ministry of Truth.’