Re reading The Fatal Shore when this caught my eye.
Governor Darling is having an argument with the media in 1826. He is losing to Wentworth and Hall who are pressing for trial by open jury and representative assembly so he;
…makes a clumsy lunge against the opposition press. He tried to muzzle the Australian and Monitor by imposing newspaper licences, which would be withdrawn if they printed a ‘blasphemous or seditious libel” John Macarthur also urged him to kill their circulation with a stamp duty of 4 pence per copy.
186 years later they’re still trying it on.