Independent Media Inquiry biographies
The Australian Government has established an inquiry into the Australian media. The Honorable Ray Finkelstein QC is leading the Independent Media Inquiry with the assistance of Dr Matthew Ricketson.
The Honourable Ray Finkelstein QC
Ray Finkelstein graduated in law in 1970 and was admitted to practice in 1971. Between 1971 and 1975 he worked in Melbourne as a solicitor and also as a tutor at Monash University. He was called to the Bar in 1975, specialising in equity, commercial and corporate law. Appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1986, Mr Finkelstein thereafter concentrated on appellate work, often acting for state and federal governments and their instrumentalities. He was acting Solicitor-General for the state of Victoria during 1992. Mr Finkelstein was appointed a judge of the Federal Court in 1997 and held additional appointments as Deputy President of the Australian Competition Tribunal and the Copyright Tribunal of Australia. In December 2008 he was appointed President of the Australian Competition Tribunal. He retired as a judge of the Federal Court and President of the Competition Tribunal on 30 June 2011 and has returned to private practice at the Victorian Bar. Mr Finkelstein is married to Leonie Thompson and has two sons, Michael and Joel.
Dr Matthew Ricketson
Dr Matthew Ricketson is a journalist and academic who has worked on staff at The Age, The Australian and Time Australia magazine, among other publications, and has run the Journalism program at RMIT for 11 years. In 2009 he was appointed the University of Canberra’s inaugural professor of journalism. Unlike many journalism academics who come to the academy after finishing a career in the news media, Matthew has moved back and forth between the two in his working life, which began at the local newspaper chain, Standard News, in Melbourne, in 1981. Dr Ricketson believes moving between industry and academy can and has been mutually beneficial to both parties. That is, he is able to bring fresh perspectives on journalism practice into the classroom and also has been able to apply his study of the news media in the newsroom, most recently in his position as Media and Communications Editor of The Age. Between 2006 and early 2009 he reported on and analysed the media, covering, among other issues: the federal coalition government’s package of bills to overturn the cross-media ownership laws; the subsequent shake-up of the media landscape, the Australian Communications and Media Authority’s report on Alan Jones’ broadcasts before the Cronulla riots, the Campaign for the Right to Know by Australia’s leading media companies; the Future of Journalism summit and the Australian Law Reform Commission’s report on privacy and the media.
This recent newsroom experience coincided with a seismic shift in the newspaper industry, which is struggling to find a new business model to replace the one that has sustained it for close to two centuries, and with the rise of new media technologies that are transforming how journalism is being practiced, how people consume media and the relationship between news media and what Professor Jay Rosen calls ‘the people formerly known as the audience.’ Since arriving at the University of Canberra Dr Ricketson has been head of the discipline of Journalism and Communications, with responsibility for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in advertising, marketing communication, media studies, information studies and public relations as well as journalism. Dr Ricketson’s primary research is in journalism practice, whether its history, its future, its ethics or its broader role in society. He is the author of a biography, Paul Jennings: The boy in the story is always me, (2000), a textbook, Writing Feature stories, (2004) and an anthology, The Best Australian Profiles (2004). He is editing a book for Palgrave Macmillan about the state of Australian journalism that is scheduled for publication in 2012.