News of mining magnate Gina Rinehart’s leap to the top of BRW’s Rich 200 has made headlines across the country, and has forced eager journalists to their calculators.
$19 billion, Rinehart’s estimated profits for the financial year 2011-12, is in many ways an incomprehensible sum. It is enourmous and obscene and unbelievable. Statistics that apply this wealth to an everyday setting only accentuate this truth.
The Australian went so far as to open their initial article on the story with a brutally affective comparison.
The BBC mentioned it in passing.
The Herald Sun were happy to use the method.
And The Age basically got a little creative with all the things she could do with her fortune.
Drawing parallels to people’s everyday lives may be seen as shallow, but for me, it is an affective, truthful way of representing news to consumers in a palatable, yet shocking way. It is emotive and evokes a response unlike anything else. It allows audiences to visualise their news material and apply it to a setting that is comfortable, and it means they don’t have to scrutinise or think too much when reading an article.
This post would not be complete without me venturing into the world of Rinehart paralells, so I will leave you with this.
In the financial year of 2011-12, Gina Rinehart earned 34,00 times more money than the average Australian primary school teacher. Hmm.
**** Screenshot; theage.com.au, May 24th, 2012
*** Screenshot; http://www.heraldsun.com.au, May 24th, 2012
** Screenshot; bbcnews.co.uk, May 24th, 2012
* Screenshot; theaustralian.com.au, May 24th, 2012