Press Gallery decisions on space allocation
The Press Gallery committee has discussed some of the factors we will consider in any decisions about allocating space in the Gallery to journalists and media organisations. This will guide any advice we give the Department of Parliamentary Services about those who seek space in the Gallery with a license agreement.
The mission of the Press Gallery, in the preamble of our constitution, is to report the affairs of the Parliament to the people it serves. This shapes the factors we will consider.
When discussing these factors with those who seek a license agreement for space in the Gallery, we are trying to establish some of the facts and background to guide our decisions. We are not seeking long, formal applications.
The factors are:
Membership qualifications. Does the media outlet qualify for membership of the Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery under its Constitution, as approved by members on 20 November 2018?
Audience reach. How many readers, listeners and/or viewers does the media outlet have?
Australian audiences. Is the media outlet’s audience primarily in Australia or overseas? We do not exclude overseas media organisations. However, our mission is to report the affairs of Parliament to the people it serves, so we put a priority on media outlets that can demonstrate their reach to the Australian community.
History of coverage. What is the record over time of the media outlet’s coverage of Parliament House, national affairs and federal politics?
Journalists. How many journalists does the media outlet have focused on federal politics and the news from Parliament House?
Frequency of use. How many of the media outlet’s journalists need physical space in the Press Gallery on a daily basis?
Existing situation. What are the media outlet’s current circumstances? Does it already have space in the Gallery? Does it want to expand? Does it require storage space? Is it a new outlet seeking to enter the Gallery?
Those who seek space are welcome to name any other factors they regard as important.
Agreed by the Press Gallery committee, March 2020.