Journalists from SBS, News Corp’s The Weekend Australian Magazine and The Guardian took out the top prizes at the Voiceless Media Prizes, awarded $5,000 each for outstanding journalism.
The $22,500 Voiceless Media Prizes celebrate media reports and investigations which highlight animal protection issues and encourage public debate.
Now in its eighth year with a judging panel including Nobel laureate J.M. Coetzee, the prizes attracted a strong collection of nominees from a wide range of publications including The Sydney Morning Herald, ABC TV, Channel Seven News, and The Sunday Age.
Sponsored by Hunter Hall International Limited, the prizes included $5,000 first prizes and $2,500 runner up prizes across three categories – Print, Digital and Broadcast.
Broadcast – winning the highly competitive Broadcast category were Sonja Armstrong, Matthew Evans and Stephen Oliver for their three part investigation into Australia’s meat industries in For the love of meat, broadcast on SBS. Their work explored the brutal impact of consumer demand for cheap meat on animals, and highlighted the worst aspects of factory farming, including welfare and the environment.
Print – Journalist Simon King won the Print category for his investigation into dolphin captivity in Free Bucky, published in The Weekend Australian Magazine. His piece delved into the complicated issues surrounding dolphin captivity in NSW, providing a thorough analysis of the legal issues and potential solutions.
Digital – Elle Hunt won the Digital category with her opinion piece, Do you care about animals? Then you really shouldn’t eat octopus, published by The Guardian. Her article raised an unusual issue with a valuable message. Generating almost 1,000 readers’ comments and prompting discussion online, the article brought much-needed attention and consideration to the intelligence of animals.
Runners up in the Broadcast category were Caro Meldrum-Hanna and Sam Clark for their exceptional report, Australian greyhounds deemed too slow exported to Macau, China against industry rules, broadcast on ABC TV’s 7.30.
Print Journalism Runner-up was Anna Krien for her feature, In Danger: The strange life and tragic death of Julia the gorilla, published in The Monthly.
Digital Journalism Runner-up was Susannah Waters for her in-depth report published in The Scavenger, Are duck hunting seasons set to resume in New South Wales?
See the full list of 2016 Media Prize finalists here.
Download the full media release below.