Friday August 10, 2018

Blockbuster Thursday: Foxtel and MCN leaders on the big decisions

On a blockbuster Thursday edition of Mediaweek TV on Sky News Business this week, the chief executives of Foxtel, Patrick Delany, and the CEO of MCN, Mark Frain, talked about how they are adapting their businesses for the changing TV landscape.

When asked about how much the loss of the Network Ten business could hurt MCN, Frain replied: “MCN had a brilliant business prior to the Ten representation and it will be a brilliant business in the future. It will change MCN to be sure, but with some of the plans Patrick is developing at Foxtel, the innovation we will bring to market will be very exciting.

“There is a new battleground emerging around the attention economy, which for media and advertisers is where the future is playing out.”

Frain admitted they might be able to replace some of the departing Network Ten revenues with new opportunities. “In the last couple of weeks I have had a very interesting introduction to life as a CEO in the media world.

“The number one focus has been on our people and how we transition the business over the next six to 12 months.

“There are a number of new opportunities from businesses that have approached MCN for representation. They would complement the powerhouse that is Foxtel and take us into different areas. They are screen and video based with premium brand-safe content, which is the core DNA of MCN and Foxtel.”

Patrick Delany, who is also the new chair of MCN, said the subscription TV business is about getting to masses through niches. “With the advent of streaming and even more niche programming, I see that as a huge opportunity for us.”

Delany used the TV appearance to emphasise how Foxtel will use streaming to engage with more customers. He explained that live TV will also continue to thrive on the platform.

“We will be repositioning Foxtel. Foxtel has always been a premium product and it will remain a premium product. We will deliver value like never before. We will deliver television innovation like never before. The iQ3 set-top box and subsequent upgrades are stream machines. Channels will have a role in the future, but perhaps not as big. Brands will be very important.

“You will see us get very big in drama and movies and that is part of repositioning the business.”

Delany said there would be announcements and the launches of new products every two or three weeks later this year.

He wouldn’t be drawn on special low-cost sampling packages for the two-thirds of the population who don’t have access to a Foxtel subscription.

Watch the special edition of Mediaweek TV on Sky News Business here.

News Corp: Digital revenues grow to 30% as news subscriptions build

News Corporation has reported 2018 fourth quarter total revenues of US$2.69 billion, a 29% increase compared to $2.08 billion in the prior year period, reflecting the inclusion of Foxtel’s results, following the merger with Fox Sports, continued strong growth in the book publishing and digital real estate services segments and a $29 million positive impact from foreign currency fluctuations.

The growth was partially offset by lower print advertising revenues at the news and information services segment. Adjusted revenues (which exclude the foreign currency impact, acquisitions and divestitures) increased 5%.

The company reported fiscal 2018 full year total revenues of $9.02 billion, an 11% increase compared to $8.14 billion in the prior year period, reflecting the inclusion of Foxtel’s results, strong growth in the digital real estate services and book publishing segments and a $172 million positive impact from foreign currency fluctuations. The growth was partially offset by lower print advertising and News America marketing revenues at the news and information services segment. Adjusted revenues increased 2%.

For the Australian businesses, News Corp reported revenues lifted 1% for the full year in the news and information segment.

CEO Robert Thomson reported confidence that new rights acquisitions, including cricket, would lift subscriber numbers at Foxtel. However the subscription TV service reported lower subscription and advertising revenues in the full year.

Commenting on the results, chief executive Robert Thomson said:

“Fiscal 2018 was a year of operational and transformational success at News Corp, with robust performance across our businesses, and positive and profound changes in the character of our revenue flows, which were more global, digital and subscription-based. We generated strong revenue and Segment EBITDA growth in the Digital Real Estate Services and Book Publishing segments, which, together with the consolidation of Foxtel, drove over $1 billion in profitability for the year.

“Digital Real Estate Services continue to flourish and we expanded into meaningful adjacencies, broadening our audience and our revenue sources. HarperCollins’s success underscores the importance of intelligent editors and great writers in creating premium content. Algorithms are, as yet, unable to write empathetic, compelling books. We also saw meaningful operational improvements at the News and Information Services segment led by higher digital paid subscribers and disciplined cost initiatives, notably in Australia. Mastheads like The Times, The Sunday Times and The Wall Street Journal reached new heights in their digital transformation, with digital paid subscribers now exceeding print subscribers. The new Foxtel is focused on product innovation and leveraging its valuable content.

“News Corp is now a more substantial company after the Foxtel transaction, with a much higher percentage of recurring, subscription-based revenues, which should help offset a volatile advertising environment.

“We are marking five years since our Separation and are confident News Corp has a lustrous future, built on a strong digital and global foundation.”

Fiscal 2018 full year revenues increased $50 million, or 1%, compared to the prior year, including the $119 million positive impact from foreign currency fluctuations.

Within the segment, News UK, Dow Jones and News Corp Australia revenues grew 4%, 2% and 1%, respectively, while revenues at News America Marketing declined 6%. Adjusted revenues for the segment were 3% lower compared to the prior year.

Advertising revenues declined $76 million, or 3%, while circulation and subscription revenues increased $105 million, or 5%, driven by the factors discussed above in the fourth quarter segment results.

Nine reveals plans for cross-platform coverage of Australian Open tennis

Nine has unveiled its strategy for the 2019 Australian Open, highlighting what it has described as an innovative cross-pillar strategy, which uses all of Nine’s key properties, designed to promote the Grand Slam tournament into a festival of tennis and entertainment.

The strategy was revealed at Tennis Australia’s First Serve event in Melbourne, which highlighted how Tennis Australia would work with Nine to continue to expand the Australian Open into a broader community event, built around food, music, kids and the game of tennis.

“The Australian Open is the greatest aggregator of eyeballs on consecutive nights in Australian television – bar none,” said Tom Malone, Nine’s director of sport. “But in 2019 we are going to do something different. We are going to bring not just the world-class on-court action, but the amazing atmosphere and excitement of the event itself into every Australian home.

“Nine’s coverage will be unique in that it will cater not only for the sports fanatic but also the event lovers, speaking to a broad audience that loves and engages with the great game of tennis.”

Nine will also look to integrate its key pillars – news, sports, lifestyle, entertainment – within the broadcast to showcase all aspects of the festival of tennis:

• Today (news): Nine’s breakfast show will take up residency at The Open, providing 14 days of live coverage from Melbourne – showcasing all facets of the event, the best of Melbourne, the best of tennis, the best experiences both on and off the court.
• Wide World of Sports Studio (sport): WWOS will set up camp at the heart of the precinct, providing a pop-up experience that brings fans closer to the magic of sports broadcasting, closer to the experts and entertainers and the technology that makes tennis world class.
• 9Honey (lifestyle): Nine’s women’s network 9Honey will launch a dedicated destination called Summer Serve, celebrating the very best of summer through story-led content.
• 9Now (entertainment): 9Now is being labelled the gateway for fans to watch the tennis anywhere and at any time.
• (sport): The Wide World of Sports platform is aiming to make tennis part of the conversation 365 days a year.

“When Nine secured the tennis rights we promised a true cross-platform strategy, and together Nine and we will do that by relentlessly pursuing a ‘Best Seat in the House’ strategy,” said Malone.

“Nine’s coverage of the Australian Open will showcase the best and the biggest matches through our various pillars and we can’t wait to bring that storytelling and Nine sizzle to the Australian Open – a celebration of food, music and kids.”

In terms of the broadcast, Wide World of Sports will be pursuing a “Best Seat in the House” strategy aimed at bringing millions of Australians all the tennis action on and off the court.

“Whether it’s the biggest names from Rod Laver Arena, highlights or post-match interviews, Nine’s coverage will be unwavering and all-encompassing – a premium blockbuster main channel event, on 9Now and, alongside a multicontent experience dedicated to showcase all facets of the Australian Open right across the Nine ecosystem,” said Malone.

Nine has also confirmed that from January it will begin offering its new addressable advertising solution, via live streaming, to offer marketers 9Now’s 6.5 million+ declared sign-ups – the largest of any Australian broadcaster – throughout its tennis coverage.

“Australian Open 2019 will also mark another milestone for the way we connect marketers with their target audience,” said Matt Granger, Nine’s director of sales, sport.

“With the launch of our real addressable advertising across our live streaming platform 9Now, we are clearly catering to the demand for identity-based marketing through tennis, the biggest property of the summer.”

Nine reveals Australian Open team: McEnroe/Courier combo to play

Nine has announced an all-star lineup of commentators and hosts who will lead the inaugural year of its six-year broadcast deal with Tennis Australia.

When the Australian Open begins on January 14, Nine will be the new home of tennis, with the tournament’s best matches and biggest moments broadcast across the network’s suite of channels and 9Now.

Spearheading Nine’s team is Grand Slam legend and superstar John McEnroe, one of the most in-demand broadcasters in the world. Viewers can expect the International Tennis Hall of Famer to be at his outspoken best. One of the all-time greats, McEnroe won seven Grand Slam tournaments (four US Opens, three Wimbledons) among his 77 singles titles, as well as 72 doubles titles. He was ranked No. 1 in the world in both categories.

Joining him with expert analysis and unparalleled insight into the game will be the highly experienced broadcaster Jim Courier. Ranked No. 1 in the world in 1992-93, Courier is one of the sport’s most popular characters. In his 12-year playing career, Courier won two French Opens and two Australian Opens.

A roll call of local hosts will also be on duty:

• Todd Woodbridge will join Nine’s new lineup. One of the most successful and dominant doubles players in history, Woodbridge racked up 16 major men’s doubles titles, including nine Wimbledons, three US Opens, three Australian Opens and one French Open.
• Alicia Molik, the current Australian Fed Cup captain, will provide unrivalled access and insight into the best female players. Molik broke into the world Top 10 in 2005, and won the doubles title at the 2005 Australian Open and the French Open in 2007.
• Also joining the new-look team are Jelena Dokic, Sam Groth and Dylan Alcott.

At the age of 16, Jelena Dokic caused one of the biggest upsets in tennis history by beating world No. 1 Martina Hingis at Wimbledon. By the time she was 19, Dokic was ranked No. 4 in the world. She has also penned the best-selling autobiography Unbreakable, a book which details her career and well-documented family life.

Sam Groth won the 2015 Newcombe Medal, awarded to Australia’s most outstanding tennis player for the year, and holds the world record for the fastest serve recorded in a tournament – a bullet-like 263.4 km/h.

Dylan Alcott is one of the most inspirational stories in Australian sport. From 2015-18, he won four consecutive Australian Open quad wheelchair singles titles and will be aiming for five in a row in 2019.

Hosting the Nine coverage will be Rebecca Maddern, James Bracey and Tony Jones.

Award-winning journalist Rebecca Maddern has previously covered the Australian Open as well as many of the world’s biggest sporting events, including the Commonwealth Games, Melbourne Cup and AFL.

Since earning his stripes at Foxtel, in a short time the sports fanatic James Bracey has become an integral contributor to Nine’s team, with duties spanning the network’s NRL coverage, hosting Sports Sunday and 100% Footy, and reporting on Today.

There are few sporting events that Tony Jones has not been involved with after more than 30 years at Nine. Whether it be the Olympic Games, the Commonwealth Games, the AFL or the Ashes, TJ has proved himself to be the master of sports presenting and reporting.

Tom Malone, head of sport for Nine, said: “For generations, Nine’s Wide World of Sports has set the benchmark that all others follow and we are confident that our new deal with Tennis Australia will continue that tradition.

“We have assembled a team of fresh faces while bringing back some familiar names who are the best at what they do. The Australian Open is the country’s pre-eminent summer sporting event and we’re confident our new-look team will help to instil a renewed passion for the game into lovers of tennis around Australia.”

Nine’s six-year broadcast deal encompasses the Australian Open in Melbourne as well as the lead-up tournaments around Australia – the Hopman Cup in Perth and the Brisbane and Sydney Internationals. Plus, Nine’s Wide World of Sports will give you the best seat in the house to Australia’s Davis Cup tie in September and the Fed Cup in February.

Further announcements on Nine’s commentary team will be revealed in the coming months.

SBS hosts TV industry leaders at inaugural Media Pride event

SBS this week hosted the very first Media Pride event, in partnership with Pride in Diversity and Screen Diversity Inclusion Network at The Beresford, Sydney.

Media Pride is an initiative generated by the SBS Pride and Allies employee affinity group, with the aim of bringing the Australian media together for the first time to focus on LGBTIQ+ diversity and inclusion.

Panellists at the inaugural event, presided by SBS Viceland’s The Feed presenters Patrick Abboud and Jan Fran, included outgoing SBS CEO and managing director Michael Ebeid, who spoke about his personal experience, the significance of the recent marriage equality campaign and the importance of creating an inclusive and respectful culture for a diverse workforce, an area that he has personally championed at SBS.

Ebeid was joined on stage by industry leaders including Brian Walsh (Foxtel), Bevan Lee (Seven Network), Darren Dale (Blackfella Films), Fiona Cameron (ACMA) and Tea Uglow (Google Creative Labs).

Chris Keely, chair of the SBS Pride & Allies Committee, said, “I’m thrilled that so many Australian media could join this important launch of Media Pride.

“Last year’s campaign for marriage equality propelled LGBTIQ+ diversity and inclusion to the forefront of the media conversation but what’s next?

“The answer is that there is no room for complacency. The work building diversity and inclusion for LGBTIQ+ communities has only just begun, and there is still much work to be done, particularly for the marginalised.”

Foxtel’s Brian Walsh noted that Foxtel was commissioning a drama series with a transgender teenager as the lead actor. Walsh also commended Ebeid and his team for creating such an inclusive workplace.

The key aims of Media Pride are:

• Focus on the unique responsibility of media in shaping community opinions of LGBTIQ+ individuals, communities, and their issues
• Highlight LGBTIQ+ media executives and talent, and their challenges and achievements
• Promote cultural change and diversity and inclusion for LGBTIQ+ Australians
• Send the message that all Australian media workspaces should provide an inclusive place of work, which includes LGBTIQ+ communities, based on mutual respect, understanding and support of all LGBTIQ+ individuals

Media Pride was sponsored by PwC, L.E.K. and Deloitte, and attended by a broad range of Australian media including representatives from the production industry.

News Corp's Bryce Johns on subscription growth and data led newsrooms

When News Corp Australia acquired Australian Regional Media in 2016, it also acquired Bryce Johns. Currently, he is the executive editor of digital for mastheads in northern NSW, Northern Territory and Queensland.

By Kruti Joshi

This sees him look after the digital operations at papers like the Gold Coast Bulletin, Townsville Bulletin, NT News and The Courier-Mail. Johns tells Mediaweek that the zone he looks after has 16 dailies and 60-70 non-daily titles. “The 16 regional newspapers grew digital subscription by more than 50% last year,” Johns revealed. His key mission is to keep the momentum going.

“Journalism costs a lot of money and the issues facing the industry are obvious,” he said. “My role is about protecting journalism in communities where it might otherwise be injured.

“The more digital subscriptions we sell and the faster we sell them, the more robust the journalism model is.”

Johns is currently based in Brisbane. This is because The Courier-Mail is as big as the other 15 titles combined.

“At the moment I am spending a lot of time in Brisbane, working on making The Courier-Mail newsroom as digitally savvy as it can be.” This has meant less travelling for Johns than he did previously. However, at the time of our conversation, Johns had driven up to the Sunshine Coast from Brisbane. “I am in paradise and our office is built on a little lake. I am looking out of my window at the little lake with swans and ducks in it. So life is good.”

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article here or subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

Mercado on TV: Street Smart, Aussie cops and jumping the shark (bite)

Within hours (or was it minutes?) of last Sunday night’s ratings being released, Ten’s chief content officer Beverley McGarvey moved new Aussie sitcom Street Smart, telling staff that “comedy was subjective and hard to get right”.

By Andrew Mercado

The program was released on a night beside Ten’s much better known programs like Australian Survivor and Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures. It felt a little like Street Smart got barely enough publicity and promotion.

If Dance Boss hadn’t bombed on Seven the following night, Street Smart probably would have attracted much more negative comment from the tabloid press, which seemingly can’t wait to use random tweets from nobodies just so they can run the clickbait headline “Worst Show Ever” (as reported by TV Tonight recently, noting that Pointless had suffered the same fate just two weeks ago before Dance Boss got the same label). Street Smart was lucky to escape that tag, but it still got moved because it had just 365,000 viewers following All Aussie Adventures with 881,000 viewers. But Street Smart actually had better ratings than All Aussie Adventures’ lead-in, The Sunday Project, which had only 358,000 viewers. And yet Street Smart is considered the flop?

Next week, Nine begins its new Aussie cop drama Bite Club, but will it flop like their Aussie cop shockers Kings Men (1976), Waterloo Station (1983), Young Lions (2002), The Strip (2008), Cops L.A.C. (2010) and Hyde and Seek (2016)? Surely not, given the network has also had huge success with local cop shows like Division 4 (1969-1975), Water Rats (1996-2001) Stingers (1998-2004) and Underbelly (2008 – ad infinitum), and, let’s be honest, the cops were supporting characters compared to the crims).

Bite Club comes with an unusual premise, with its title referring to a cop (Todd Lasance) getting his foot bitten off by a shark. The last time an Aussie cop series tried using shark bait to get viewers hooked, it was the unfortunate Shark’s Paradise (1986), a laughable Miami Vice rip-off that starred David Reyne and was set on the Gold Coast.

Having not been able to preview Bite Club, I cannot tell you whether it is better or worse than Shark’s Paradise, but one would assume it has to be better. Australian TV dramas have come a long way since the 1980s but then again, given I predicted Dance Boss would be a hit in this very column last week, what would I know?

NZ On Air report, Merger update, NZME role, MediaWorks and the minister

Mediaweek New Zealand’s John Drinnan rounds up all the latest media news across the ditch.

Maori journalist tells critics not to patronise

A top TVNZ Māori journalist has pushed back against public attacks on her coverage of an emerging freedom of speech debate. The high-profile presenter of the Sunday current affairs show, Miriama Kamo, went public against activist demands Māori journalists step down from an item about threats to stop engagements by alt-right speakers Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux. Kamo said: “Many people are insulted, offended and disgusted by the views of the Canadian duo. I appreciate that. However, there have also been suggestions that I, as a Māori woman, should not front this episode. I reject that,” she said, “Sunday’s story this week is told by reporter Tania Page, another Māori woman. The notion that we should distance ourselves from this story is patronising. The story went ahead and there has been extensive coverage of freedom of speech issues, leading to the permanent establishment of a watchdog free speech coalition.”

Where are the audiences?

This week, the funding agency New Zealand On Air presented its second biannual consumption report Where Are The Audiences, 2018. Overall traditional broadcast TV continues to dominate, with 82% tuning into linear TV and 78% tuning into radio. Subscription video-on-demand increased from 35% weekly in 2016 to 62% in 2018. The weekly reach of physical music formats decreased 13% while Spotify continued to rise. More people watched videos on YouTube and Facebook than read a newspaper. On demand viewing was stable, but there was growing use of on demand as a source of content rather than catch-up viewing. The gap between older and younger audiences was narrowing, with older adopting new technology, the NZ On Air report found.

National leaders supports media merger

Opposition National Party leader Simon Bridges has given surprise support for a merger between NZME and Fairfax-owned Stuff. The merger has been knocked by the Commerce Commission and High Court, but is currently awaiting a decision by the Court of Appeal. Asked on Radio Live for his view on the controversial merger, Bridges said: “What we are seeing at the moment is a [business] model that is broken. The economics don’t work. So if this is what media outfits have to do to stay strong and keep providing content that is relevant to us, I see that.”

Start your engines

NZME has appointed Greg Cassidy to be head of the motoring title, Driven. Cassidy has been NZME general manager in the upper South Island where he was credited with “strong success” in five markets.

MediaWorks and the minister

Tensions appear to be high between MediaWorks and Communications minister Clare Curran over chief executive Michael Anderson’s criticism of government policy to create a free-to-air TV channel at state-owned Radio NZ. Planning appears to have stalled with no funding boost in the May budget. But Curran accused Anderson of running a campaign using “Murdoch-like language” in criticising the ABC. Sources say the Government is unhappy that MediaWorks leaked comments that the potential for government policy on TVNZ and RNZ might

TOP PHOTO: Micheal Anderson

Mediaweek New Zealand profile: TVNZ’s John Gillespie on TV news

TVNZ head of news and current affairs John Gillespie is winning plaudits for moving Q&A from Sunday mornings into primetime.

By John Drinnan

The politics show has been a foundation for the non-commercial Sunday morning schedule. This style of talking heads current affairs has been seen as risky for commercially focused TVNZ in recent years.

Meanwhile, John Gillespie has poached a star journalist John Campbell from TVNZ’s sister state broadcaster, Radio New Zealand. Starting next month he will take on a new role as a “roving reporter and presenter” working across platforms.

Both are significant changes for TVNZ, which has been seen as cautious and stable amidst earthquakes in the media landscape. “Steady as she goes” makes sense with a 6pm news bulletin that dominates the audience over five. On Tuesday, it had an audience of 700,000. Rival MediaWorks’ Newshub on Three has made some incursions into 18-39 demographic and 25-54s, especially on breakfast TV.

But the TVNZ news boss insists that he sees the wider media as the competition, not just Newshub.

Gillespie trained as a journalist at Mitchell College in Bathurst (now Charles Sturt University) after a period travelling. He later worked in New Zealand provincial TV, then breakfast in 1997. He ran the consumer show Fair Go, headed daily news shows and was head of current affairs. He replaced Australian Anthony Flannery as head of news and current affairs (HONCA) five years ago. TVNZ has been seen as more conservative than TV3 and the big print/digital players like Stuff and

Gillespie says change is inevitable with migration into social media and mobile devices. TVNZ – especially its digital news operations – is seen as more conservative by many.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article here or subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

TV Ratings Analysis: August 9

• Nine makes it four in a row as NRL and Footy Shows contribute
• The Front Bar and AFL Footy Show closer together this week
• Survivor: AFLW star Moana Hope voted off as episode wins demos


By James Manning


Home And Away had a second successive night just over 600,000 to finish the week. Its biggest audience was again on Monday this week with 700,000+.

The Single Wives then did 298,000.

The Front Bar

The Front Bar pushed over 200,000 in Melbourne again with a three-market audience of 328,000. Hopefully Seven might screen it a little earlier on a multichannel in Sydney and Brisbane during the finals.


A Current Affair did 709,000, which was its first time under 840,000 this week.

The live NRL match had a metro audience of 438,000.

The Footy Show in Melbourne was up to 175,000 after 139,000 last week. In Sydney after the football, the NRL edition was on 114,000.


Pointless had a second night close to 250,000.

The Project did 295,000 and then 532,000.

At the end of a busy week of eliminations, Moana Hope was the next to go on Australian Survivor. The episode did 664,000. The editors seem to give viewers a hint of what might unfold later in the show with some lingering images of Hope during the first challenge for egg and bacon roles. The aerial photography from Fiji is dazzling and tenplay should give viewers a compile of some of those stunning images captured by the producers.


Grand Designs Australia was on 480,000 followed by Everyone’s A Critic on 250,000.


Britain’s Ancient Tracks with Tony Robinson did 297,000, down from its launch on 341,000 last week. That could still be enough to make it the channel’s #1 show this week.

The doco Batavia Revealed then did 255,000.

Week 32 TV: Thursday
ABC Seven Nine Ten SBS
ABC 10.3% 7 16.0% 9 21.3% TEN 13.7% SBS One 6.3%
ABC 2 3.0% 7TWO 4.9% GO! 4.3% ONE 3.0% VICELAND 1.7%
ABC ME 0.7% 7mate 2.9% GEM 1.4% ELEVEN 3.0% Food Net 1.0%
ABC NEWS 1.4% 7flix 2.9% 9Life 2.2% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 15.3% 26.6% 29.1% 19.7% 9.2%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates Ten Affiliates SBS
ABC 9.6% 7 15.3% 9 21.2% WIN 9.9% SBS One 6.7%
ABC 2 3.2% 7TWO 7.7% GO! 5.4% ONE 2.9% VICELAND 1.2%
ABC ME 1.1% 7mate 4.0% GEM 2.6% ELEVEN 2.0% Food Net 1.2%
ABC NEWS 1.5% 7flix 3.0% 9Life 1.6% NITV 0.1%
TOTAL 15.4% 30.0% 30.8% 14.8% 9.2%


83.5% 16.5%


  1. Seven News Seven 992,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 955,000
  3. Nine News Nine 865,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 849,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 709,000
  6. ABC News ABC 677,000
  7. Australian Survivor Ten 664,000
  8. Home And Away Seven 615,000
  9. The Chase Australia Seven 583,000
  10. The Project 7pm Ten 532,000
  11. 7.30 ABC 525,000
  12. Hot Seat Nine 488,000
  13. Grand Designs Australia ABC 480,000
  14. The Footy Show Nine 472,000
  15. Thursday Night NRL Live Nine 438,000
  16. Ten Eyewitness News First At Five Ten 366,000
  17. Beach Cops Seven 361,000
  18. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 334,000
  19. The Front Bar Seven 328,000
  20. Hot Seat -5pm Nine 300,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. Australian Survivor Ten 244,000
  2. The Project 7pm Ten 164,000
  3. The Footy Show Nine 134,000
  4. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 124,000
  5. Seven News Seven 123,000



18-49 Top 5

  1. Australian Survivor Ten 354,000
  2. The Project 7pm Ten 259,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 224,000
  4. The Footy Show Nine 209,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 209,000


25-54 Top 5

  1. Australian Survivor Ten 356,000
  2. The Project 7pm Ten 280,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 276,000
  4. Nine News Nine 260,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 245,000
THURSDAY Multichannel
  1. Father Brown-PM 7TWO 219,000
  2. The Big Bang Theory TX1 9GO! 209,000
  3. The Big Bang Theory TX2 9GO! 202,000
  4. Noddy Toyland Detective-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 172,000
  5. Little Roy-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 172,000
  6. Peter Rabbit ABCKIDS/COMEDY 170,000
  7. Peppa Pig-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 168,000
  8. Murdoch Mysteries-PM 7TWO 167,000
  9. Rusty Rivets ABCKIDS/COMEDY 167,000
  10. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 166,000
  11. Floogals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 165,000
  12. Andy’s Prehistoric Adventures ABCKIDS/COMEDY 163,000
  13. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 161,000
  14. Hey Duggee-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 161,000
  15. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 161,000
  16. Fireman Sam-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 157,000
  17. PJ Masks-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 148,000
  18. Becca’s Bunch-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 148,000
  19. Luo Bao Bei-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 148,000
  20. Peppa Pig-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 144,000
THURSDAY Subscription TV
  1. Live: NRL Cowboys V Broncos FOX LEAGUE 260,000
  2. Live: The Late Show With Matty Johns FOX LEAGUE 116,000
  3. Live: NRL Thursday Night League FOX LEAGUE 85,000
  4. Live: AFL 360 FOX FOOTY 71,000
  5. Aussie Gold Hunters Discovery Channel 67,000
  6. The Bolt Report SKY NEWS LIVE 52,000
  7. Paul Murray Live SKY NEWS LIVE 49,000
  8. Selling Houses Australia LifeStyle Channel 41,000
  9. Credlin SKY NEWS LIVE 41,000
  10. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 37,000
  11. NCIS TVH!TS 37,000
  12. Outsiders SKY NEWS LIVE 35,000
  13. Judge Judy ARENA 33,000
  14. Selling Houses Australia LifeStyle Channel 33,000
  15. Amazing Hotels: Life Beyond The Lobby LifeStyle Channel 33,000
  16. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 32,000
  17. America’s Got Talent FOX8 32,000
  18. NRL Tonight FOX LEAGUE 31,000
  19. NCIS: Los Angeles TVH!TS 30,000
  20. Kiva Can Do! Nick Jr. 30,000

Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2018. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM

Media News Roundup

Business of Media

Digital revenues grow to 30% at News Corp as news subscriptions build

News Corporation has reported 2018 fourth quarter total revenues of US$2.69 billion, a 29% increase compared to $2.08 billion in the prior year period, reflecting the inclusion of Foxtel’s results, following the merger with Fox Sports, continued strong growth in the book publishing and digital real estate services segments and a $29 million positive impact from foreign currency fluctuations.

The growth was partially offset by lower print advertising revenues at the news and information services segment. Adjusted revenues (which exclude the foreign currency impact, acquisitions and divestitures) increased 5%.

The company reported fiscal 2018 full year total revenues of $9.02 billion, an 11% increase compared to $8.14 billion in the prior year period, reflecting the inclusion of Foxtel’s results, strong growth in the digital real estate services and book publishing segments and a $172 million positive impact from foreign currency fluctuations. The growth was partially offset by lower print advertising and News America Marketing revenues at the news and information services segment. Adjusted revenues increased 2%.

For the Australian businesses, News Corp reported revenues lifted 1% for the full year in the news and information segment.

CEO Robert Thomson reported confidence that new rights acquisitions, including cricket, would lift subscriber numbers at Foxtel. However, the subscription TV service reported lower subscription and advertising revenues in the full year.


News Brands

Victorian Govt bans Sky News from APN Outdoor screens on stations

Sky News has confirmed an interview with far-right extremist Blair Cottrell did not go to air in Victorian train stations – but Transport Minister Jacinta Allan says she received “different advice”, report The Australian’s Stephen Brook and Samantha Hutchinson.

Allan has defended her decision to ban Sky News from Victorian train stations in a trainwreck interview with Sky presenters Laura Jayes and David Speers, but was unable to give specific examples of offensive content that had been aired on train station platforms.

She argued “dozens of advertisers” had left Sky following the decision to air the Cottrell interview, when in fact only three – American Express, Huggies and Specsavers – had taken such action.

APN Outdoor, which manages screens that previously broadcast Sky News bulletins in Victorian train stations, said it had not received a complaint from the public about Sky News interviews.

“Since 2015, nationally, we have only received a handful of complaints relating to Sky News content and none relating to interviews,” an APN Outdoor spokesman said.

Additionally, Sky News CEO and managing director Angelos Frangopoulos confirmed that the station had not received any complaints from the Victorian government about the content of their news bulletins since they launched on the metro rail network in 2015.

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Allegations against Geoffrey Rush revealed in statement from actress

The actress at the centre of a defamation case involving Geoffrey Rush has alleged in a statement that he touched her on the breast and lower back and traced his finger across her lower back, a court has heard, reports Fairfax Media’s Georgina Mitchell.

Rush, 67, is suing Nationwide News – publisher of The Daily Telegraph – and journalist Jonathon Moran over two front-page stories and a newsagent poster published in late 2017, which detailed allegations that Rush engaged in “inappropriate behaviour” during a theatre production of King Lear.

Eryn Jean Norvill, who played Cordelia in the production, allegedly made a complaint to the Sydney Theatre Company but did not wish for it to be brought to the attention of Rush.

On Thursday, the Federal Court heard Norvill did not speak to the Telegraph for its story and refused for months to become involved in the court case before she asked her lawyer to issue a statement to the newspaper’s lawyers in July.

The court heard journalists from the Telegraph made repeated attempts to contact Norvill for comment before publication. However, she did not speak to them and the stories proceeded with “secondhand information”.

The case will return to court for a further pre-trial hearing in October.

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Adelaide’s ABC News last night came from Perth after tech fail

Technical gremlins forced ABC TV Adelaide to broadcast its 7pm news bulletin from a studio in Perth on Thursday night, reports The Advertiser.

Viewers were left bemused when local WA anchorman James McHale opened the bulletin with: “This is the ABC news South Australia… coming from Perth tonight.”

McHale blamed technical difficulties for the switch.

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Magazine brands reaching 15m+ readers via print or digital delivery

A total of 15,040,000 Australians aged 14+ (74.1%) read magazines whether in print or online either via the web or an app. That is up 0.7%, or 105,000, from a year ago according to the results from the Roy Morgan Australian Readership report for the 12 months to June 2018.

Readership of print magazines was over 13.6 million Australians aged 14+ (67.3%), up 0.5%, or 65,000, from a year ago.

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey of 50,035 Australians aged 14+ in the 12 months to June 2018.

Ten of Australia’s top 15 magazines (see chart below) grew their print readership over the past year, with six of the leading titles growing their readership by at least 5% on a year ago.

Gardening Australia had the strongest performance of Australia’s leading magazines, growing its print readership by 26.3% to 490,000. Australia’s two most widely read free magazines also performed well. Coles Magazine readership was up 21.5% and Fresh readership increased by 16%. Better Homes & Gardens remains Australia’s most widely read paid magazine with more than 1.6 million readers.

Other leading magazines to perform strongly include Women’s Weekly readership up by 5.2%, Woman’s Day (+1.6%), National Geographic (+5.9%), Royal Auto (+4.5%), Magazine (+5%), Road Ahead (+3%) and Australian Geographic (+1.4%) and just outside the Top 15 Qantas magazine was up 4.5%.


Melbourne crowd in a frenzy as John Farnham sings with Celine Dion

Celine Dion has stunned fans on her final Australian performance, teaming up with Aussie music icon John Farnham for an unforgettable duet on his hit “You’re The Voice”, reports News Corp’s Cameron Adams.

Dion kept the anticipated duet for her final Australian performance at Rod Laver Arena this week and told fans Farnham’s personality and talent were “contagious”.

The Canadian has been performing the song each night on her Australian tour.

“This is a dream come true for me,” Dion told Farnham after the song, where the Australian icon arrived unannounced for the second verse, sending the crowd into rapture.

“I have been singing along to your videos on YouTube for more than 20 years,” Dion said. “The charismatic person you are, the energy you give, it is contagious. You are very contagious. It’s been a dream for me to get just a little closer (to you) than YouTube.”

The pair rehearsed the duet at the sound check yesterday, with Farnham spending the pre-show in the room named after him backstage at Rod Laver Arena.

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Awards: Academy creates more problems than it solves with new Oscar

In an effort to combat declining ratings for the annual ABC broadcast, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences appears to have opened up a Pandora’s box that raises more questions than the organisation is currently prepared to answer, reports The Hollywood Reporter.

How will the Academy decide what criteria define a “popular” film? Will it be a matter of box office or budget? Will there be a committee that will arbitrate any close calls? Will studios be able to lobby to argue for a film’s popularity, and, conversely, can they decline a “popular” designation if they decide they don’t want a given film like, say, Black Panther, relegated to what some might regard as the kids table?

The immediate reaction to the idea made it sound anything but popular.

“The film business passed away today with the announcement of the ‘popular’ film Oscar. It had been in poor health for a number of years. It is survived by sequels, tent-poles, and vertical integration,” tweeted Rob Lowe, who knows something about Oscar low points, having participated in the notorious “Snow White” production number at the 1989 Oscars.

Another question mark is how Netflix films will be treated considering that little is typically disclosed about how many people view any of the streaming service’s pics – making their popularity difficult to gauge, since those that have been released theatrically have received only very limited distribution.

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Sports Media

Macquarie Sport Radio’s big weekend of live action: AFL, NRL, EPL

Macquarie Media’s new east coast radio network Macquarie Sports Radio is boasting an impressive menu of live sport this weekend with live coverage of 15 NRL, AFL and Premier League games across its stations.

The action started last night with live NRL on its Brisbane station.

On the weekend it will broadcast five different AFL matches across its Brisbane and Sydney stations.

There will be NRL matches broadcast into Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane (+ Perth on DAB+) on Friday and Sunday.

Then with the English Premier League launching this weekend, Macquarie Sports Radio will broadcast six different matches across all stations beginning with Manchester United v Leicester City Saturday morning at 5am.

The EPL coverage comes via a syndication deal the broadcaster has with talkSPORT in the UK.


• 6pm – Friday August 10 – New Zealand Warriors v Newcastle Knights – SYDNEY 954 & BRISBANE 882
• 7.55pm – Friday August 10 – South Sydney Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters – MELBOURNE 1278 & PERTH DAB+
• 4.10pm – Sunday August 12 – Melbourne Storm v Cronulla Sharks – MELBOURNE 1278 & PERTH DAB+


• 1.45pm – Saturday August 11 – Hawthorn Hawks v Geelong Cats – SYDNEY 954
• 2.10pm – Saturday August 11 – Gold Coast Suns v Richmond Tigers – BRISBANE 882
• 7.25pm – Saturday August 11 – GWS Giants v Adelaide Crows – SYDNEY 954
• 7.25pm – Saturday August 11 – Collingwood Magpies v Brisbane Lions – BRISBANE 882
• 3.20pm – Sunday August 12 – Melbourne Demons v Sydney Swans – SYDNEY 954


• 5am – Saturday August 11 – Manchester United v Leicester City – ALL STATIONS
• 9.30pm – Saturday August 11 – Newcastle United v Tottenham Hotspur – ALL STATIONS
• 12am – Sunday August 12 – Huddersfield v Chelsea – ALL STATIONS
• 2.30am – Sunday August 12 – Wolverhampton v Everton – ALL STATIONS
• 10.30pm – Sunday August 12 – Liverpool v West Ham – ALL STATIONS
• 1am – Monday August 13 – Arsenal v Manchester City – ALL STATIONS

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