Front Page Report is a monthly survey of Australia’s front pages, The Australian, Sydney Morning Herald, Daily Telegraph, Herald Sun, The Age and Canberra Times.

The monthly report is released on the first Tuesday of each month.

The three-monthly report is released on the third Tuesday of the month.

Michael Smith conducts and publishes the report.

Michael was a journalist for 10 years in Melbourne and London, a press secretary in the Kennett and Howard governments and director of public affairs with global PR firm Burson-Marsteller.

Over the past decade he has worked closely with London and Washington-based international law firm Amsterdam & Partners and the Geneva-based International Federation of Red Cross, and written for The Australian, Herald Sun and ABC.

Michael was the International Red Cross media adviser and spokesman in Sierra Leone during the 2014 Ebola crisis.

Michael has spoken at a number of conferences including the Walkley Foundation Annual Public Affairs Convention, the Australian Government Relations Summit at the National Press Club and the Australian Defence Force Academy/Monash University Informations Warfare conference.

Michael has worked with international law firm Amsterdam & Partners. He did the media for the case Tadonki v Secretary-General of the United Nations. The case won Pro Bono Case of the Year at American Lawyer magazine 2013 Global Legal Awards. The case highlighted the deaths of 4000 people from cholera in Zimbabwe during the Mugabe years. The deaths were preventable.

Michael first began analysing front pages in 2010 when he noticed a link between the front page of The Australian and the dumping of Kevin Rudd as Prime Minister and Labor leader. The ABC published his report.

He also discovered a decline in front page reporting of Australian elections. The results were presented at the Walkley Foundation Annual Public Affairs Convention and published by Crikey.

He has looked at other data. He discovered that Australia had one of the highest troop deaths rates in Afghanistan during the war in the latter years. His findings were presented at the Australian Defence Force Academy/Monash University Information Warfare conference and referenced in Kevin Foster’s book Don’t Mention the War. The ABC published the findings.

“The front page is a mirror. It shows us who we are and what we’re doing. It’s good, every now and then, to take stock and decide which way we want to go,” said Michael.