Rob McKay responds to Sam Roggeveen's post about the Australian media's bias towards American stories:

While no doubt there is a cultural bias and it is one of the main drivers for the amount of US news Australia gets, a supply aspect is also at play and the two are connected. Also it comes against the backdrop of unflagging demand for content by, and reinforcement from, 'constant news' on TV and online here. Of primary importance operationally for local news outlets is that the reports are in English. But what follows is also essential and works for both print and electronic media.

The US reports are put together by journalists who work for large media organisations, some of which are owned by the same company. Therefore, they come in a recognisable form and are processed easily, complete with moving and still images often including diagrams. Several story angles will be explored, allowing local planning to occur to fill time and space that must be filled and to fulfil the expectation of rolling coverage.

As with the Boston bombing on constant television and radio news, when the roll grinds to a halt, the outcome can be embarrassing, with journalists talking to other journalists who, because they are in the field or just in the same country, are often unaware of developments that the anchors know about because anchors are privy to multiple other sources.

Keep in mind that this often comprehensive product of requisite quality is relatively cheap. It is also reliable. The US is a source of sensational developments on many fronts that the likes of the UK, Canada and New Zealand can’t compete with.