Thursday February 14, 2019

Mediaweek TV

Joining the show today is Larry Kestelman, Owner, National Basketball League.

After acquiring the National Basketball League in 2015, the former owner of telco Dodo, Larry Kestelman, has been rebuilding the sport in Australia. Last year saw big crowds and a championship for a club Kestelman then owned, Melbourne United.

He joins us today to talk about how the 2018-2019 season is going and to explain his strategies for the growth of the sport and its media deals.

Tune in at 2.45pm today on Your Money.

Podcast Week: Exec coach Margie Hartley, Sky News, Mamamia’s Quicky

• Valuable business insights, An early-morning quicky + A platform for political enthusiasts

Fast Track: Conversations with Margie Hartley

As an executive coach to 11 of Australia’s top listed ASX companies, Margie Hartley gets valuable insights into business challenges and how best to tackle them.

Now as a PodcastOne host, she is interviewing some of Australia’s best and brightest to share with a podcast audience.

Hartley told Mediaweek about how her podcast will meet demand for a portable audio solution: “I have consistently heard people say, ‘I wish I could take you with me’ or ‘If I could just get 15 minutes to be able to better understand something about my career’.

“People have been desperate to get information about their careers. People also find it hard to get the time to think about their careers. The world has changed and we are all incredibly busy.”

Hartley told Mediaweek it is equally as important to focus on your career as it is to spend time on financial planning.

“I wanted to give professionals access to the idea of what it means to develop your career and to tackle some of the complicated questions my clients ask me.”

So where is she pulling her podcast interviews from?

“I am lucky to have a network of amazing people I have worked with over the past 16 years. They have been really generous and happy to have a conversation with me on the podcast

“I did a podcast last year with Janine Allis called Superwomen…We Ain’t and we got a lot of great feedback.”

One of the attractions of Fast Track is the episode length. Junkee co-founder and CEO Neil Ackland features in a great interview with Hartley covering career setbacks and the listener is in and out in 16 minutes and much richer for the experience.

We couldn’t resist asking Hartley if she was anything like Wendy Rhodes, the character on Billions who is the in-house performance coach at Axe Capital. She laughed and admitted there are similarities between the roles they both have.

“We look at the issues and try and understand where staff are going and help take them through a process of self-directed learning to find purposeful and positive change in their world.”

So far PodcastOne has published four episodes and in future there will be a new interview dropped each week on a Tuesday.

Listen to PodcastOne’s Fast Track here.

Mamamia promoting an early morning Quicky

Elle Beattie, (Executive Producer), Claire Murphy (Host/Podcast Producer), Ian Camilleri (Audio Producer)

Mamamia said this week many of its audience find the news cycle depressing and endless. So from next Monday 18th February the publisher is offering an alternative.

Dropping every weekday morning at 6am, Mamamia’s The Quicky podcast is promising to get listeners up to speed on the top stories, with a deep dive on one topic they need to know more about, all in under 10 minutes. Mamamia’s launch partner in the new venture is MyBudget.

Mamamia’s head of podcasts, Rachel Corbett, explained: “The news cycle is often delivered with the masculine focus of ‘if it bleeds it leads’. It can also be impersonal and assumes a lot of knowledge, leaving you feeling like you’ve turned up to a conversation 10 minutes late and are trying to catch up. We want to help women fill that knowledge gap and keep up to date in a more engaging and conversational way without the anxiety that much of the news cycle deliberately triggers.”

The Mamamia team producing The Quicky includes ACRA-nominated journalist, newsreader and radio show presenter Claire Murphy who has relocated from Adelaide to host the show.

Executive producer Elle Beattie previously spent over a decade producing some of the highest rating radio shows in Australia, including three years as executive producer on Nova’s Kate, Tim and Marty.

Ian Camilleri completes the core team as audio producer joining from Network 10 and with previous sound design experience with SBS and Fox Sports.

Sky News launches digital platform 2600 with a podcast

Sky News has announced the launch of 2600, a new digital-first brand and content platform for political enthusiasts, keeping them in-the-know on the latest breaking news and events from the nation’s capital this election year.

Part of the platform includes an online political newsletter, sent at 6am each weekday, with exclusive stories, breaking news and expert analysis for a rare insight into democracy in action from Parliament House.

David Speers

Users can register for free at skynews.com.au/2600.

Sky News political journalists David Speers, Kieran Gilbert, Laura Jayes, Annelise Nielsen and Tom Connell will regularly contribute tailored content to the new digital platform.

The digital platform will also feature exclusive podcasts including interviews with politicians, business leaders and national agenda-setters, live and on-demand analysis and interviews, videos, and the political week in pictures.

The 2600 Talks’ podcast production team includes Adam Marsters – 2600 editor, Tim Love – head of digital, Courtney Gould – 2600 Producer and former Mediaweek deputy editor Kruti Joshi – audio producer.

10’s new property show not just for Instagram stars and carpenters

For many Australians who have been watching TV for at least a couple of decades, memories are still strong of the Nine Network’s version of Changing Rooms. Among that audience is Network’s 10’s executive producer on its version of the format, Sarah Thornton.

By James Manning

“I had watched it a lot as a viewer and I feel like I grew up with Changing Rooms in Australia,” Thornton told Mediaweek. “When I moved to the UK 15 years ago the UK version was still on air there and I watched it fairly religiously.

I love property porn and the show is right up my alley.

Sarah Thornton

“What I love about it is that it combines property with genuine insights into peoples homes and lives, with humour.”

Network 10’s production partner in Changing Rooms is Endemol Shine, the production house Thornton also works with for Ambulance.

Lara Hopkins, the Changing Rooms showrunner, and Peter Newman [Endemol Shine chief content officer], have both been all over it.

“The commission was a very quick commission. Between us all we knew we wanted to stay faithful to the show and yet move it on because it was a long time ago since it was on air and television has changed significantly.”

Thornton said 10 and Endemol Shine turned the show around very quickly. “Endemol Shine has created a great homage to the best of the original with a real contemporary feel. That is a combination of new talent and the way we know make television – with back stories and beautifully shot before and after segments.

“The contestants have been cast carefully. It is a lot harder to make TV in a world where the people you are casting are very familiar with what happens on television. The viewers are also more savvy and have more requirements about what the show has to do.

The bar was set very high for Endemol Shine and they have done a great job.

The discussion around securing Natalie Bassingthwaighte as host came after 10 commissioned the show, but pretty quickly after, said Thornton.

“We all agreed instantly she was the right person to front the show. For me as an EP that was the moment I started to visual the program as it felt fresh, modern and exciting.

“She brings a real energy to the format.”

Continued at mediaweek.com.au.

Podcast: Natalie Bassingthwaighte on Changing Rooms

Recording artist, actress and TV personality Natalie Bassingthwaighte joins the Mediaweek podcast.

10’s new twice-a-week makeover show Changing Rooms is something of a career change for Natalie Bassingthwaighte. She tells Mediaweek’s James Manning that after time spent as a member of the Rogue Traders and a TV career that has spanned drama and reality, she was lured by the chance to indulge her passion for interior design. As well as detailing what audiences should enjoy about her new show, Natalie remembers her time on Neighbours, hosting So You Think You Can Dance and her time as a judge on two versions of The X Factor in two countries.

Listen online here.

ARN owner HT&E says ‘never been better time to invest in audio’

Radio broadcaster HT&E has reported its full year results for calendar 2018.

Highlights:

• Revenue from continuing operations up 5% to $271.8 million
• EBITDA of $71.8m up 7% on prior year and in line with expectations
• ARN revenue growth of 3% to $235.5m, EBIT up 3% to $80.5m
• Group claims well positioned to exploit the future of audio entertainment

Highlights from the earnings statement:

Statutory revenue from continuing operations post Adshel sale was up 5% to $271.8m, and EBITDA on the same basis was up 2% to $72.7 million, largely in line with expectations.

Net cash of $128.4m provides HT&E with a strong balance sheet post the successful sale of Adshel to oOh!media for $570 million in September 2018.

There has been significant board renewal during 2018 including the appointment of a new chairman and highly credentialed, media experienced directors have joined the company.

Following another year of transformational change at HT&E, the board is taking a methodical and balanced approach in their assessment of the company that includes understanding both the opportunities and risks sitting before them.

HT&E CEO and managing director Ciaran Davis said: “ARN implemented a strategy focused on ratings growth and commercial success in 2018 and ended the year experiencing growth across a number of FM stations, culminating in the highest average ratings in the history of the company.

“We saw some growth at the EBITDA line in ARN to $84.6 million and importantly saw a strong EBITDA margin maintained at 36%, highlighting the strength of the business even despite a softer market at the end of 2018.

It has never been a better time to invest in audio and 2019 will see HT&E focus on ARN’s broadcast, digital, social and streaming suite of assets with a clear vision to create the future of audio entertainment. We have put plans in place to deliver increasing value for shareholders by driving and delivering operational performance across the group.”

InStyle refresh includes red carpet welcome for new cover stars

Two years ago the Pacific monthly InStyle had a major redesign, now in its March 2019 issue, on sale from February 14, the title is showing off a relatively minor brand refresh.

By James Manning

“It felt like it was time for another breathe of fresh air,” InStyle editor Emily Taylor told Mediaweek.

“The redesign two years ago worked really well for us after we went to a more simplified format.”

Instyle editor Emily Taylor

 “We certainly didn’t want to make huge changes,” said Taylor. “Because what we’ve got is working.”

Amongst the changes is a new display font the InStyle design team has chosen.

“It’s simple, sophisticated and the first time it has been used in Australia,” said Taylor.

She also explained how the format of the magazine has been simplified with four key pillars.

Style is right at the front and very focussed on shopping which is what our audience really comes to us for.

Fashion and features is where we promote local talent which is what InStyle is really proud of.

Beauty and Lifestyle are the remaining pillars, and we have renamed the latter The Life.”

The covers of InStyle used to be reserved for supermodels and more recently movie stars. We asked Taylor if these days the cover star needs a big social following?

We are re-examining what it means to be a celebrity in 2019. Celebrity is really huge for us and we look at Fashion, Beauty and Lifestyle through the prism of celebrity.

“What we define as celebrity has really changed, even in the four years I have been editor. The main driver of that has been social media.

“Movie stars are used to shift covers and they worked for us. There has been a shift to people with big social media followings – they are not necessarily actors any more. They might be comedians, musicians or models.

“To many people the social media engagement can make them seem more real and accessible.

“What we are finding is that Australians are really resonating now in InStyle. We still rely on Hollywood A-list celebrities to an extent, but we have had covers in the last six months with Lara Worthington, Jesinta Franklin and Jessica Gomes, which we have shot locally that have done really well for us. As well as traditional Hollywood talent.”

That is exciting for both the InStyle team and their readers as they no longer have to rely on a small group of stars rotating on the cover.

The March edition puts into play the new InStyle model with Instagram star Celeste Barber on the cover. “I wanted someone on the cover who was perhaps unexpected, yet who was doing something resonating with the Australian market,” said Taylor.

Barber is not only resonating with just Australians, but globally and InStyle wasn’t able to shoot the cover photo session until Barber returned from a US live tour.

“The more I spoke to people about her, the more I realised they knew who she was. However a lot of people thought she was American because she has such a huge following there.”

Barber’s management was ready for Taylor’s call. Barber mentions InStyle magazine in her new book calling InStyle her favourite magazine. But Taylor hadn’t read it at that stage, although it was on her desk ready.

“It was lovely to be then able to work with her and give her a first fashion magazine cover.”

For the March edition, photographer Hugh Stewart has created a short film, which the title will share across its digital assets and social media.

To coincide with the digital content, InStyle will also be launching a digital design refresh in the next few weeks.

“In 2019 our team works across all platforms and touchpoints with one goal, to create the best content,” said Taylor.

Photos: Celeste Barber’s InStyle photo session

Australia secures spot in Eurovision for the next five years

SBS and its production partner Blink TV have secured Australia’s participation as a competitor at the Eurovision Song Contest for the next five years, until 2023, the European Broadcasting Union revealed overnight.

• SBS announces Australia’s Eurovision Song Contest 2019 representative

This year will mark Australia’s fifth participation since the country took part for the first time during the contest’s 60th anniversary in 2015.

Until now, Australia’s right to participate was up for consideration year by year. Now, for the first time, a five year guarantee was given to broadcaster SBS.

Home for 35 years

“SBS has been the home of the Eurovision Song Contest in Australia for 35 years and we’re thrilled at this invitation to become a more permanent member of the Eurovision Song Contest family,” SBS commissioning editor Josh Martin said. “We will continue to showcase Australia’s amazing talent and diversity to hundreds of millions of people across Europe and the world. It highlights the power of music to bring people together – even from polar opposite sides of the globe. Thank you Europe!”

The EBU said the 2018 Eurovision Song Contest reached more than 2.9 million Australians on SBS.

Australian head of delegation and director of Blink TV Paul Clarke is ecstatic about the latest developments: “This is a wonderful validation of what Australia has brought to Eurovision, and we say ‘Thank You Europe!’ for their decision. It’s been 10 years since we first took a team to Eurovision – just Julia and Sam, myself and a cameraman. Since then SBS’s coverage has grown, and the Australian music artists and industry have completely risen to the exciting challenge. Australians have really fallen in love with the joy, and Eurovision has become part of the Australian entertainment calendar. Europe knows it can always expect great music and passion from Australia.”

Australia’s love affair with Eurovision has been a passionate and enduring one and, this year, SBS and Blink TV launched the country’s first ever selection show Eurovision – Australia Decides to determine the artist and song to represent the country on the world’s biggest stage.

A natural progression

The decision to grant Australia the right to participate for the next five years was taken by the Reference Group, the contest’s governing body on behalf of the Participating Broadcasters.

Jon Ola Sand, executive supervisor of the contest on behalf of the EBU and one of the permanent members of the Reference Group, said: “We are delighted that Australia has become a more permanent member of the Eurovision Song Contest family. The Australians have long been huge fans of the event with a great number of loyal viewers year on year and when they were invited to participate in the 60th anniversary edition of the contest, we couldn’t have imagined quite how popular their artists would become. It was a natural progression for us to agree to their inclusion as a participant for the next five years as they bring so much to the table and we very much look forward to welcoming them to Tel Aviv to perform, alongside the 41 other exciting participants in what’s sure to be a fantastic celebration of music.”

Australia’s participation this year

After winning over the Australian public and a jury of industry experts on Friday February 8 and Saturday February 9, Kate Miller-Heidke and her song Zero Gravity were selected to represent Australia at the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest 2019 in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Kate will perform in the second half of the first semifinal on May 14.

TV Ratings Analysis: Wednesday February 13

• Married At First Sight – week three ends on huge 1.29m
• Midweek launch: Changing Rooms disappoints on debut
• My Kitchen Rules: Main course a winner for Victor & G
• Hard Quiz: Tom Gleeson goes Hard on contestant

Wednesday: Week 7 2019

FTA TV news/current affairs

• Seven News 916,000/908,000
• Nine News 838,000/825,000
• A Current Affair 717,000
• ABC News 612,000
• 7.30 545,000
• 10 News First 365,000
• The Project 189,000/323,000
• SBS World News 106,000

Breakfast TV

• Sunrise 282,000
• Today 189,000

Week 7 Reality Battle

Married At First Sight
Sunday 1,263,000
• Monday 1,298,000
• Tuesday 1,183,000
• Wednesday 1,290,000

My Kitchen Rules
• Sunday 1,046,000
• Monday 906,000
• Tuesday 855,000
• Wednesday 766,000

I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here
• Sunday 544,000/625,000
• Monday 560,000/566,000
• Tuesday 536,000/580,000

Seven

My Kitchen Rules featured the group two team of Victor and G who had the hard task of following Tuesday’s Hall of Famers. Their main course of Pork Rib pleased the judges, but they missed with their entrée and main. They trail the group leaders by 46 points. The final episode of the MKR week did 766,000 down 816,000 from last week.

Episode three of Undercurrent: Real Murder Investigation followed on 452,000 after 466,000 last week.

Nine

A Current Affair carried a story about a Queensland fake doctor busted again. The episode did 717,000.

Married At First Sight ended its third week just short of a season high on 1.29m. The episode was all over the media this morning in a return to form and it means three of four episodes this week were over 1.25m.

After MAFS wrapped for the week, 9Life’s Talking Married was seen by 157,000.

Back on the primary channel, New Amsterdam did 461,000 after 481,000 a week ago.

10

Tough night for the primary channel with a midweek share under 10%.

The numbers for The Project were soft with 323,000 after 7pm despite Eric Bana spending time on the desk at the end of the episode. The smaller audience wasn’t an ideal launching pad for Changing Rooms.

There were tears during the first Changing Rooms reno reveal. At first the homeowners didn’t know where they were at first glance, but when it sank in where they were they seemed thrilled with the result. And so they should be as the rooms were significantly better than before. Same during the second room reveals – tears and then joy at what happened.

The Changing Room launch numbers were (very) disappointing on just over 200,000 yet it will have some clear entertainment air tonight against Seven’s sports alternative. Although it would be brave to forecast too much growth after these numbers. 10 has already indicated the show won’t be back at 7.30pm on Wednesday next week after the poor launch.

Law & Order: SVU did 206,000 later in the evening.

ABC

Hard Quiz featured Alcatraz, REM, Indonesian political history and Meccano as the specialist subjects. Tom Gleeson went hard on one of the guests who had early onset Parkinson’s disease. “Why did you go early? Did you want to beat the rush?” The episode did 607,000 after 571,000 last week.

Network 10 has helped promote the stars of Rosehaven this week – Luke McGregor was on Hughesy We Have A Problem on Tuesday and Celia Pacquola was a panelist on The Project last night. The ABC sitcom did 429,000 after 452,000 a week ago.

Luke McGregor and Celia Pacquola in Rosehaven

The studio audience that was part of Get Krack!n last night included Merrick Watts sitting in the front row. “This is the best studio audience we have ever had!” claimed the girls after no studio audience last week because they were on location on the Murray River. The Get Krack!n attempts as audience participation were hilarious – if only Ellen’s audience looked that disinterred on her show. Watts played an audience member called Mark and he traded “Fuck you” insults with the hosts. After launching on 263,000 a week ago, episode two did 234,000.

Would I Lie To You? was then on 225,000 followed an Adam Hills: The Last Leg repeat with 179,000.

SBS

McMafia has found a place on FTA with the channel launching the first series last night with a double episode that averaged 173,000.

Earlier in the night a repeat of Gourmet Farmer was on 115,000 followed by Great British Railway Journeys on 176,000.

Week 7 TV: Wednesday
WEDNESDAY METRO
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 11.3% 7 21.4% 9 25.7% 10  7.0% SBS One 4.6%
ABC 2 2.5% 7TWO 2.9% GO! 3.6% 10 Bold 4.2% VICELAND 0.9%
ABC ME 0.5% 7mate 3.5% GEM 1.8% 10 Peach 2.2% Food Net 0.9%
ABC NEWS 1.3% 7flix 1.8% 9Life 2.4%     NITV 0.1%
    7Food 1.0%            
TOTAL 15.7%   30.8%   33.6%   13.5%   6.5%

 

WEDNESDAY REGIONAL
ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.7% 7 21.0% 9 20.2% WIN 7.4% SBS One 3.8%
ABC 2 3.1% 7TWO 4.4% GO! 4.0% WIN Bold 3.6% VICELAND 1.1%
ABC ME 0.9% 7mate 4.2% GEM 3.3% WIN Peach 2.5% Food Net 0.9%
ABC NEWS 1.8% 7flix 2.9% 9Life 2.0% Sky News  on WIN 0.9% NITV 0.3%
TOTAL 17.5%   32.5%   29.5%   14.4%   6.1%

 

WEDNESDAY METRO ALL TV
FTA STV
87.1% 12.9%
Wednesday FTA
  1. Married At First Sight Nine 1,290,000
  2. Seven News Seven 916,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 908,000
  4. Nine News Nine 838,000
  5. Nine News 6:30 Nine 825,000
  6. My Kitchen Rules Seven 766,000
  7. A Current Affair Nine 717,000
  8. ABC News ABC 612,000
  9. Hard Quiz S4 ABC 607,000
  10. 7.30 ABC 545,000
  11. The Chase Australia Seven 493,000
  12. New Amsterdam Nine 461,000
  13. Undercurrent: Real Murder Investigation Seven 452,000
  14. Hot Seat Nine 446,000
  15. Rosehaven ABC 429,000
  16. 10 News First 10 365,000
  17. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 325,000
  18. The Project 7pm 10 323,000
  19. Sunrise Seven 282,000
  20. Hot Seat -5pm Nine 273,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 399,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 158,000
  3. New Amsterdam Nine 123,000
  4. A Current Affair Nine 123,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 115,000

 

18-49 Top 5

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 642,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 252,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 209,000
  4. A Current Affair Nine 203,000
  5. Nine News Nine 201,000

 

25-54 Top 5

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 692,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 290,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 257,000
  4. A Current Affair Nine 246,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 235,000
Wednesday Multichannel
  1. NCIS: Los Angeles (R) 10 Bold 158,000
  2. Talking Married 9Life 157,000
  3. Dino Dana ABCKIDS/COMEDY 136,000
  4. NCIS (R) 10 Bold 136,000
  5. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 135,000
  6. Ocean’s Thirteen 9GO! 129,000
  7. NCIS: Los Angeles E2 (R) 10 Bold 127,000
  8. Peter Rabbit ABCKIDS/COMEDY 127,000
  9. Rusty Rivets ABCKIDS/COMEDY 126,000
  10. Pie In The Sky-PM 7TWO 125,000
  11. Bondi Rescue E2 (R) 10 Bold 125,000
  12. Andy’s Wild Adventures ABCKIDS/COMEDY 122,000
  13. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 119,000
  14. Bluey-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 119,000
  15. Peppa Pig-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 117,000
  16. M- Avatar-PM 7mate 116,000
  17. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 114,000
  18. Neighbours 10 Peach 111,000
  19. PJ Masks-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 111,000
  20. Go Jetters-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 110,000
Wednesday Subscription TV
  1. Gogglebox Australia LifeStyle Channel 120,000
  2. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 63,000
  3. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 53,000
  4. PML Later Sky News Live 48,000
  5. Credlin Sky News Live 44,000
  6. Bones TVH!TS 38,000
  7. Kirstie And Phil’s Love It Or List It LifeStyle Channel 36,000
  8. Game Of Thrones BoxSets 36,000
  9. Kid-E-Cats Nick Jr. 35,000
  10. Peppa Pig Nick Jr. 34,000
  11. Game Of Thrones BoxSets 34,000
  12. Speers Sky News Live 34,000
  13. Grand Designs Australia LifeStyle Channel 33,000
  14. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 33,000
  15. The Great British Bake Off LifeStyle FOOD 32,000
  16. Shimmer And Shine Nick Jr. 31,000
  17. NCIS TVH!TS 31,000
  18. Nella The Princess Knight Nick Jr. 30,000
  19. Richo Sky News Live 30,000
  20. Live: WWE Smackdown FOX8 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

Apple’s ‘Netflix of news’ meets resistance from publishers

Apple’s plan to create a subscription service for news is running into resistance from major publishers over the tech giant’s proposed financial terms, according to people familiar with the situation, complicating an initiative that is part of the company’s efforts to offset slowing iPhone sales, reports The Wall Street Journal.

In its pitch to some news organisations, the Cupertino, California company has said it would keep about half of the subscription revenue from the service, the people said. The service, described by industry executives as a “Netflix for news,” would allow users to read an unlimited amount of content from participating publishers for a monthly fee. It is expected to launch later this year as a paid tier of the Apple News app, the people said.

The rest of the revenue would go into a pool that would be divided among publishers according to the amount of time users spend engaged with their articles, the people said. Representatives from Apple have told publishers that the subscription service could be priced at about $US10 ($14.10) a month, similar to Apple’s streaming music service, but the final price could change, some of the people said.

[Read the original]

News Brands

St Valentine’s Day massacre: BuzzFeed Australia loses its boss

The budget cuts at BuzzFeed Australia have claimed the founding editor of the Australian edition Simon Crerar.

Simon Crerar gives the peace sign in a photo with other BuzzFeed international editors

The news about the lay off came as staff in New York confirmed they had unionised, releasing this statement:

“It’s not all fun and memes. Our staff has been organising for several months, and we have legitimate grievances about unfair pay disparities, mismanaged pivots and layoffs, weak benefits, skyrocketing health insurance costs, diversity and more.”

Crerar yesterday posted a commentary on social media of what happened and his memories of his time working at BuzzFeed:

“Some personal news… Like so many talented folks around the world, I have been laid off by BuzzFeed. It has been the most exciting, fun, fulfilling job of my life. I’m sad, but also very thankful.

“Being hired as the founding editor of BuzzFeed Oz was epic. The opportunity to build something from scratch was a huge honour. I’m so proud of everything my team has achieved over the past five years.

[Crerar noted it was five years ago this month and he posted a screen shot of the first BuzzFeed Australia home page, noting it should make Karl Stefanovic smile!]

“By the end of 2014 we had our first news reporter: the thermodynamic @MarkDiStef, who did a Herculean job getting @BuzzFeedNews on the map down under. It has been exhilarating to see fab alumni like MDS, @GyanYankovich and @taniasafi dazzle in London, NYC and LA.

“I hired dozens of superstars over the past five years, some of the smartest, funniest, kindest people I’ve ever known. I’ve loved coming to work, every single day, and you definitely can’t say that about most jobs.

“ICYMI, I’m a very positive guy. Yeah, I’m sad. But ^^ as previously tweeted ^^ I’m so thankful I got to work with so many fab people over the past five years.

“I’m so proud of what we achieved together.

“And I’m excited about whatever is next.

“I owe my wife, and son and incoming #2 bambino some quality time. And my membership of the Cloud Appreciation Society has lapsed. So in the coming days I’ll be spending a bit of time lying on my back, dreaming BIG.”

Alan Jones and Macquarie Media seek to overturn court injunctions

Alan Jones and his radio bosses are seeking to overturn a gag order from the court case that awarded the record $3.75 million in defamation costs against the Sydney broadcaster, reports The Australian’s Charlie Peel.

Jones and radio stations 2GB and 4BC have not appealed against last year’s verdict or defamation payout – the largest in Australian legal history – delivered after he was found to have unjustifiably defamed Toowoomba’s Wagner family.

Lawyers for Jones and the radio stations yesterday appeared before Brisbane’s Court of Appeal where they argued injunctions imposed on their clients were unnecessary and that Supreme Court judge Peter Flanagan did not provide adequate reasons for granting permanent injunctions.

Appeal judge Hugh Fraser reserved his decision.

[Read the original]

Chris Gayle appeals against ‘manifestly inadequate’ defamation payout

International cricketer Chris Gayle has asked the NSW Court of Appeal to increase the $300,000 damages payout awarded to him in his defamation case against a suite of publications including The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age over claims he exposed himself to a massage therapist during the 2015 Cricket World Cup in Sydney, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Michaela Whitbourn.

Gayle successfully sued the publisher of the Herald, The Age and The Canberra Times over a series of articles published in January 2016 in the wake of his famous “don’t blush, baby” interview with sports reporter Mel McLaughlin, then at Network Ten.

In a judgment on damages published in December last year, Justice Lucy McCallum awarded the 39-year-old cricketer $325,112 for the stories, including interest.

The parties return to court for a preliminary hearing on February 27.

[Read the original]

Publishing

New Men’s Health fitness editor to focus on video content

Men’s Health has appointed Todd Liubinskas to the role of fitness director, with a focus on driving video-led content across the brand’s multitude of platforms.

Todd Liubinskas

Liubinskas has launched three fitness-focused businesses in the past 17 years – CSP Gym, CSP Athlete Factory and Coaching Zone Five Dock in Sydney.

The 35-year-old fitness expert has a holistic approach to health and fitness, which extends well beyond the gym.

In 2016, alongside his mother, he founded Let’s Get Going, a non-profit mentor and experience program that promotes the health and wellbeing of adults with intellectual or physical disabilities.

As the fitness director for Men’s Health, which has more than 2 million touchpoints, Liubinskas will lead fitness initiatives that will break down the barriers to health and fitness for the Men’s Health audience. He will be the brand’s go-to fitness resource, spearheading fitness content across video, print and digital, and will appear at Men’s Health events.

Scott Henderson, editor of Men’s Health, said: “Humble, knowledgeable and incredibly fit, you wouldn’t expect a bloke of Todd’s status to be so level headed and selfless. But he is, and it’s these characteristics that were the driving force behind his appointment as the newest member of the growing Men’s Health team.”

Liubinskas said: “I’m ecstatic to be joining Men’s Health, the ultimate fitness platform for Aussie men. It’s the natural extension for my work in the fitness space, and what an exciting time to join the brand as Scott looks to engage new audiences and broaden its reach.”

Television

10 reveals Tim Robards is returning home to Ramsay Street

Network 10 has announced Tim Robards is returning to Ramsay Street.

Tim Robards

Not only will Tim reprise his role as wealthy hotelier Pierce Greyson, this super striking, super suave bachelor will also become a permanent fixture on the Erinsborough scene. And believe us, temperatures are set to soar.

Having initially rolled into town under the guise of investing in Erinsborough’s coveted Lassiters complex, Pierce got more than he bargained for when he found himself falling head over heels for Ramsay Street’s resident bombshell, Chloe Brennan (April Rose Pengilly).

As most modern love stories and Taylor Swift ballads go, Pierce and Chloe’s relationship got very messy and very complicated very quickly. And that’s before we mention that a lot has changed since Pierce departed town. So strap yourselves in – this homecoming is going to be far from red roses, boxed chocolates and singing telegrams.

On his return to Australia’s longest running drama, Tim Robards said: “I am super excited to be returning to Neighbours full time…it means I didn’t totally crash and burn my first major acting role!

“When I started on set, the first few weeks were like the first few seconds of jumping out of a plane… you forget to breathe while everything is coming at you 100 miles an hour. But then I settled in and really started to enjoy it, but it flew by so quickly. I can’t wait to be back on set at Ramsay Street with the amazing cast and really sink my teeth into the character of Pierce,” said Robards. 

“Commuting back and forth to Melbourne and Sydney isn’t going to be easy but I have the most supportive wife in Anna and we both are fully committed to supporting each other’s careers.”

Robards will appear back on Australian television screens from late May, 2019.

Bad Mothers could be Australia’s version of Desperate Housewives

Bad Mothers is a catchy title that implicitly and deliberately raises the question: what makes them bad? Asks The Age’s Debi Enker.

But just as the “desperate housewives” from the hit series that arrived on our screens more than a decade ago weren’t exactly desperate, the bad mothers of this eight-part Melbourne-based series aren’t really bad.

The hope, says actress Jessica Tovey, who plays Danielle, is that they’re “relatable”; familiar as suburban mums struggling to meet impossible standards and, inevitably, sometimes falling short.

Addressing the series’ title and the name adopted by Danielle and her pals, Tovey says, “To me, the main reason for that name is because women often feel that they are bad if they’re not perfect at everything. That if they can’t have a career and be a perfect wife and get to the gym all the time and be a great friend, that somehow they’re failing at being a woman, which is completely unfair and ridiculous. So these women have taken ownership of that name and gone, ‘Great, we’re not perfect, so we’re the bad mothers. The perfect women are over there and we’re just gonna frolic in being terrible.’”

[Read the original]

TV birth: 10 announces another new Endemol Shine commission

Network 10 has announced yet another 2019 commission, welcoming One Born Every Minute to the 10 family.

Produced by Endemol Shine Australia, the series will be set in a bustling maternity ward and will capture all of the fear, love and joy that comes with welcoming new life into the world.

The program is from a format that is on air in the UK and other markets.

On commissioning the series, Network 10 chief content officer Beverley McGarvey said: “We have seen our audiences really embrace and enjoy an insight into the world of genuinely amazing Australians including paramedics and life-guards so having the opportunity to now get close to the incredible and dedicated teams who help us through childbirth is not only thrilling but is a real privilege and a series we believe will be very special.”

Endemol Shine Australia CEO Carl Fennessy said: “One Born Every Minute is one of the world’s most dramatic, emotional and breath taking factual series. We are incredibly proud to bring this BAFTA Award winning format to Australian audiences in 2019”.

Created by Dragonfly, part of Endemol Shine UK, the award winning documentary series has now been adapted in 10 markets including France, Denmark, Czech Republic and Israel. The Australian version will be made by Endemol Shine Australia and distributed globally by Endemol Shine International.

One Born Every Minute will commence production in Sydney in the coming months.

Eliza Barr: What the hell happened to Married At First Sight?

The next time someone asks you why you’re single, tell them about this season of Married At First Sight, writes News Corp columnist Eliza Barr.

I am a total reality TV tragic and I really believe in the healing magic of a funny, chaotic, romantic reality series that lets you escape your own life, even for an hour on a Tuesday night.

But this season of MAFS isn’t helping me escape. It’s pitching me, screaming, directly into the harsh reality of the dating scene in 2019.

Give me a woman who dates men and I’ll show you someone who has had their time wasted by a Mike.

On their honeymoon Mike played the attentive, affectionate, sexy husband to Heidi’s fabulous hair and amazing energy – but only until she wanted to talk about something real.

“I’m not your therapist,” Mike says.

No, Mike, you’re not. You’re actually not anything at all except a waste of my time. I mean Heidi’s time. I mean all of our time, Mike, you’re just a waste of a very nice jawline.

The appalling behaviour we’ve seen on this season of MAFS is a devastating indictment on what dating is like in this day and age.

[Read the original]

Strewth! Home And Away’s Alf gets a new love interest

It has been a long time between drinks for much loved Home and Away character Alf Stewart, reports Sydney Confidential.

In fact in more than three decades on air as Stewart, actor Ray Meagher has only had two love interests.

And, today being Valentine’s Day, 74-year-old Meagher wants people to know his romance days are not over.

“It has been a very long time,” Meagher told Confidential. “I am not sure I know how to manage these affairs of the heart or interpersonal relationships, speaking as Alfred Stewart of course.”

Stewart, who is married in real life, is currently at the centre of Home And Away love story between his character and that of Martha Stewart, played by Belinda Giblin. His last romantic storyline was a decade ago when he had a relationship with a character named Bridget, played by Joy Smithers.

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Gogglebox star Angie Kent wanted something Foxtel couldn’t offer

Former Gogglebox star Angie Kent was the latest person evicted from I’m A Celeb this week – and soon discovered she’d been at the centre of a real-life TV drama while she was in the jungle.

Kent, whose elimination leaves Gogglebox partner Yvie Jones as the sole woman left in the competition, made headlines last week when Foxtel’s executive director of television Brian Walsh said he was “disappointed” by the duo’s appearance on this year’s I’m A Celeb.

“From a promotional point of view the issue that upsets Foxtel is the exploitation of the Gogglebox brand to market and sell another program,” he told TV Tonight.

Speaking to news.com.au the morning after her elimination, Kent said she didn’t begrudge her former TV boss his feelings – but she shouldn’t be blamed for extending her time in the spotlight.

“I loved doing Gogglebox. I gave up four years of my life – eight seasons. We brought home three Logies. If Brian wants to be disappointed with us going into the jungle, that’s his choice. I still very much love Gogglebox and will always support it, but I’m a big girl and I wanted to spread my wings. When I’m A Celeb popped up, I thought why the hell not do something that Gogglebox couldn’t offer me?” she said.

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Mandy McElhinney still hasn’t got over the shock axing of Love Child

When Channel 9 showed the first-ever preview clip for Bad Mothers to local media one thing was blindingly obvious – Mandy McElhinney was having a ball, reports News Corp’s Colin Vickery.

No wonder. The award-winning actor had just spent four seasons playing the stitched-up sourpuss Matron Frances Bolton on Love Child.

The new Aussie drama with its five female leads is a juicy mash-up of Desperate Housewives, Winners and Losers and Playing for Keeps.

Bad Mothers represents a new phase in McElhinney’s career after the shock demise of Love Child at the end of 2017. The axing still stings.

“We got up to the 1970s and there were a lot of interesting things happening in Australia then that would have been great to explore. I was very sad to see it finish.”

[Read the original]

Sports Media

Crocmedia and NBA join forces for broadcasts of US basketball

Crocmedia is to broadcast live NBA games on Australian radio.

In an Australian first, Crocmedia’s 1377 SEN+ will broadcast a selection of games on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for the remainder of the season.

The 2019 NBA Finals will run on 1377 SEN+ and 1116 SEN.

Pacific Star Network managing director and Crocmedia’s chief executive officer Craig Hutchison said the team was excited to deliver the offering to Australian basketball fans.

“The NBA’s popularity here has reached unprecedented levels thanks to our home-grown talent including Ben Simmons, Patty Mills, Joe Ingles and Thon Maker,” Hutchison said.

“We can’t wait to bring all the excitement of the sport – delivered with our own local flavour to Australian fans – culminating in the NBA Playoffs in April.”

Australians accounted for nine of the 108 international players from a record-tying 42 countries and territories on opening-night rosters for the 2018-19 NBA season.

Schedule of games:

• Friday 15th February – 11am: Charlotte @ Orlando
• Friday 22nd February – 11:30am: Portland @ Brooklyn
• Saturday 23rd February – 11am: Chicago @ Orlando
• Sunday 24th February – 11am: LA Lakers @ New Orleans
• Friday 1st March – 11am: Golden State @ Orlando
• Saturday 2nd March – 11:30am: Portland @ Toronto
• Sunday 3nd March – 12:30pm: Oklahoma City @ San Antonio
• Saturday 9th March – 12pm: Utah @ Memphis
• Saturday 9th March – 2:30pm: Oklahoma City @ LA Clippers
• Sunday 10th March – 1pm: Charlotte @ Milwaukee
• Monday 11th March – 12pm: Milwaukee @ San Antonio
• Friday 15th March –11am: Oklahoma City @ Indiana
• Saturday 16th March – 11am: Sacramento @ Philadelphia
• Sunday 17th March – 1pm: Brooklyn @ Utah
• Monday 18th March – 4am: LA Lakers @ New York
• Friday 22nd March – 2:30pm: Indiana @ Golden State
• Saturday 23rd March – 11:30am: Oklahoma City @ Toronto
• Sunday 24rd March – 12:30pm: Dallas @ Golden State
• Friday 29th March – 11am: Brooklyn @ Philadelphia
• Saturday 30th March – 12pm: Denver @ Oklahoma
• Monday 1st April – 10am: LA Lakers @ New Orleans
• Saturday 6th April – 12pm: New York @ Houston
• Saturday 6th April – 2:30pm: LA Lakers @ LA Clippers
• Sunday 7th April – 9am: Brooklyn @ Milwaukee

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