Thursday February 28, 2019

Making waves at Pacific: Wendy Moore departs, Louisa Hatfield promoted

Seven West Media’s publishing division Pacific has revealed it is losing its face of Home Beautiful and its general manager of homes and food, Wendy Moore.

Coinciding with her departure is the promotion of Louisa Hatfield (pictured) and the announcement of four new category leaders.

Gereurd Roberts (pictured), CEO, Pacific commented: “After 12 incredible years at Pacific, Wendy Moore has decided to move on.

“Wendy has been an instrumental and invaluable part of the Pacific family, not just in building Home Beautiful to be one of Australia’s most iconic homemaker brands, but in her role as a leader and mentor to so many of our people. 

“Wendy will continue with Seven West Media through her role on Seven’s House Rules and with Pacific on select opportunities, and we wish her the best in her next chapter.”

Wendy Moore said: “For my entire time at Pacific I have been surrounded by the most talented people in the media industry, the passion of these people is what drives these amazing brands, and it’s been such an honour to be leading them for so long.

“For more than a decade I have worked with a team who have been able to deliver so much – from unveiling new digital platforms such as House To Home Beautiful and an exciting new partnership we will announce shortly, to launching new initiatives like Cooks Co-op across Pacific’s Food and Homes portfolio. It’s been my second family and I have loved every second of it.

“My time at Pacific has just been so incredibly fulfilling. On a personal note I know I will continue to keep in touch with many of the talented teams for years to come, and I am excited to see this fantastic business continue to grow.”

In announcing the new publishing structure, Roberts said: “As a business we are determined to continue our rapid growth, and as such we have announced significant new appointments across our senior management team to ensure just that.

“Louisa Hatfield has been promoted to group content and brand director, responsible for the leadership of Pacific’s editorial and marketing functions, and for the vision and strategic direction of the Pacific brands. Louisa is one of Australia’s best and most experienced media executives, and the perfect person to lead our ongoing brand expansion.

“In addition, we will also be deepening our category ownership and knowledge through the elevation of a number of talented team members from within the business. These include: Emma Nolan (head of entertainment), Susie Hogan (head of fashion & beauty), Belinda Thornton (head of homes & food) and Kathy Glavas (head of health).

“Through deep collaboration with their editors and teams, these leaders have shown the ability to drive new products, audiences and revenues in their respective categories, creating a clear leadership position in each. Reporting to Louisa, I am confident that push will continue into the future.

“With these changes not only do we have one of the most talented executive team in the industry, but one which is driven, innovative and agile enough to meet our evolving consumer and client needs. I am excited to work with them all.”

Roberts said all promotions will be effective as of March.

News DNA editorial changes at + new contributors

News Digital Networks Australia’s digital women’s network With Her In Mind Network has announced editorial changes for

Melissa Shedden (Pictured) has been appointed editor of lifestyle website Shedden steps into the role immediately having been acting editor of the site since January 2018.

Shedden has worked in media for over 10 years. Prior to joining she was editor of health and wellbeing website; deputy features editor of Women’s Health and deputy fashion editor of The Sun in London.

Felicity Harley, launch editor of, returns from maternity leave in a new role as editor-at-large of the With Her In Mind Network. She will regularly contribute to the network of sites with interviews, opinion pieces and editorial strategy as well as event and commercial opportunities.

With Her In Mind Network general manager Melissa Overman said: “Melissa is a very talented editor and confirming this appointment is testament to the great job she has been doing. She has a clear understanding of’s content offering and how it adds value to our audiences’ busy lives. She has delivered outstanding editorial with audience growth of 24% in a competitive digital environment. I’m delighted she will continue to lead our women’s lifestyle offering moving forward. I also couldn’t be happier to welcome Felicity back to the WHIMN team in her new editor-at-large role.”

Shedden said: “Our position from launch was to be smart, honest and fun and deliver the content that surprises and challenges our audience. It remains as relevant today as ever. Australian women are looking for diversity in storytelling, they want to see themselves and feel heard, and it’s a key editorial driver for us in content, audio and video. I’m really excited by this opportunity and what we have planned for 2019. It’s going to be a huge year for us.” has signed new contributors including:

Natasha Stott Despoja will be offering regular insider insights and explainers on politics and policies that affect Australian women throughout this Federal election year and beyond.

Celeste Liddle, Arrernte woman, union organiser and social commentator, will be writing opinion pieces and social and cultural commentary on what’s captivating Australian women.

Best known for her love of puns and wicked sense of humour, former Bachelorette and TV journalist Georgia Love will offer her first-hand experiences on all things relationships, life and reality TV.

Carly Findlay, author and appearance activist, will be writing heartfelt first-person pieces and real life stories.

Elle Halliwell, author, wellness coach, mum and journalist, will be covering all things health and wellbeing, parenting and real life.

Laura Byrne, former Bachie contestant, director of ToniMay jewellery and soon-to-be first-time mum will provide an honest look at motherhood, self-identity and changing relationships.

Writer Daniela Elser joins as royal commentator to launch’s Royally Obsessed content series.

Jana Hocking, podcaster, radio producer and collector of kind-of-boyfriends will be writing a weekly dating and relationships column, What’s A Girl To Do With Jana.

Fox League reveals line-up for 2019 plus 4K match coverage

• Luke Lewis joins the Fox League team
• Matty Johns taking on an expanded TV role
• 41 Games In 4K Ultra HD exclusively on Foxtel

At a special pre-season media launch event at the SCG yesterday, Foxtel confirmed a bigger and better Fox League will remain the home to Rugby League in 2019. Several enhancements to its NRL coverage were announced in addition to providing live ad-free coverage of every 2019 game except the Grand Final.

Plus for the first time ever, fans will be able to experience rugby league in 4K Ultra HD with over 40 games to be broadcast in 4K Ultra HD throughout the season on Foxtel 4K (Channel 444).

New to the Fox League family in 2019 is two-time premiership winner Luke Lewis, who will join NRL 360 Legends Night as well as Fox League’s pre and post-game coverage.

Matty Johns, will also have an increased role on Fox League in 2019. Matty will return as host of The Late Show with Matty Johns and Sunday Night with Matty Johns and will also feature on Fox League pre and post-game coverage as well live game commentary.

Current Australian coach Mal Meninga will feature across more of the big game day broadcasts in 2019 and along with current Queensland State of Origin coach Kevin Walters, Ben Ikin, Gorden Tallis, Justin Hodges, Corey Parker, Billy Moore and Yvonne Sampson will lead the biggest Queensland line-up on TV.

Fox League remains committed to providing fans with the best game day experience and that only get bigger in 2019 with the introduction of Rover Cam.

The live on-field action starts every Thursday night when Yvonne Sampson and Mick Ennis combine with a bumper panel of expert to preview the opening match of the round on Thursday Night Football.

Fox League remains the only place to watch the Friday night double-header, with the 6.00pm match exclusive to Rugby League’s only dedicated channel before the 8.00pm blockbuster.

The biggest day in NRL returns in 2019 with a massive Super Saturday triple-header live and only on Fox League, plus Fox League will be the only place to watch both Sunday matches live to wrap up the weekend’s on-field action.

Fox League’s experienced commentary team returns in 2019 with Warren Smith, Andrew Voss, Brenton Speed, Matt Russell and Matt Nable set to bring fans all the action each week.

Complementing the on-field action is Fox League’s line-up of entertainment shows:

It all kicks-off on Monday night with Lara Pitt hosting Try Time, an hour long look at the best tries from the weekend’s action. The best mentors in the NRL join Ben Ikin and Paul Kent for NRL 360 Coaches Night every Monday night before Yvonne Sampson, Mick Ennis and James Hooper offer fans insight into the game on Big League Wrap.

James Graham returns to NRL 360 Players Night every Tuesday night in 2019 while Andrew Voss is back with, The Fan, a look at Rugby League through the historical and quirky lens of the game’s biggest fanatic. Queenslanders Only wraps up the entertainment on Tuesday nights with Hannah Hollis joined by a host of State of Origin greats including Mal Meninga, Justin Hodges, Gorden Tallis, Kevin Walters and Billy Moore.

New recruit Luke Lewis, joins NRL 360 Legends Night every Wednesday night. The award winning League Life also returns in 2019 with Sampson joined on the panel by Jessica Yates, Pitt and Hollis to deliver the biggest interviews in the game. Former premiership winner Ennis, presents The Greatest. Every Wednesday Ennis will relive the greatest games in Rugby League history with insight from the greatest players on the greatest moments that the game has provided.

The weekend starts early with The Late Show with Matty Johns following Thursday Night Football. With the kids tucked up in bed, the regular team of Johns, Gorden Tallis, Nathan Hindmarsh, Bryan Fletcher, Hannah Hollis and Paul Kent will bring plenty of laughs with a raucous mix of jokes, banter, pranks and leftfield analysis.

The laughs continue on Friday night with The Professor’s Late Hit poking fun at the game, the clubs and the players that we all love.

A ratings juggernaut in 2018, Sunday Night with Matty Johns, is back in 2019. Johns will be joined by Fletcher and Brett Finch to wrap up the round’s action with plenty of laughs along the way.

The week wraps up with Controversy Corner. Graeme Hughes, Steve “Blocker” Roach, Phil “Buzz” Rothfield and Bill Harrigan go toe-to-toe every Sunday night, dissecting and debating the biggest issues in the game.

Head of Fox Sports, Peter Campbell, said: “Last year was a history making year for NRL on Fox Sports with Fox League ratings up across the board on Rugby League’s first 24 hour channel.

“Foxtel subscribers will continue to receive the best line-up of shows across the week in 2019 with in-depth analysis and insight combined with plenty of fun and entertainment, ensuring there is something for every fan.

“And it only gets bigger with Fox League expanding its comprehensive coverage of the Telstra NRL Premiership with the introduction 4K Ultra HD. In 2019 Fox League will deliver over 40 games in 4K Ultra HD on Foxtel 4K channel 444.

“4K Ultra HD will present an amazing new viewing experience for NRL fans. The picture quality and Graphics just pop like you can’t imagine. Add these amazing pictures to our World Best commentary team – and you have the NRL like never before.”

Fox Sports head of television, Steve Crawley, said: “Fox Sports is like every rugby league team at this time of year, full of bright ideas, a gifted recruit here and there and motivation everywhere, just ready and rearing to go.”

2019 Supercars action starts with Adelaide 500 on 10 and Fox Sports

Coverage of the opening round of the 2019 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship at the Superloop Adelaide 500 will kick off this week on 10 Bold on Friday March 1 and then continue all weekend on 10.

Fox Sports and Kayo launch their Supercars coverage of the event on Thursday February 28.

10 Sport Supercars team is led by 10 Sport’s Matt White, motorsport industry veteran Aaron Noonan, current Nissan Motorsport Supercars driver Rick Kelly and reporters Scott Mackinnon and Kate Peck who will bring all the action, highlights and analysis from on and off the grid.

In the Fox Sports studio, reigning Bathurst 1000 champion and Supercars legend Craig Lowndes will join Mark Skaife and Jess Yates to give Foxtel customers insights and analysis.

The Fox Sports team are joined by Supercars experts Neil Crompton, Greg Murphy and technical analyst Mark Larkham plus Chris Stubbs has all the breaking news.

On Thursday, Supercars will hit the track for first time with Fox Sports coverage from 1.15pm including the official on-track debut of the Ford Mustang featuring Dick Johnson, Marcos Ambrose and Scott McLaughlin in the Ford Performance Parade of Champions leading into a twilight Supercars Practice 1 at 6pm.

Fox Sports expert commentator and five-time Supercars champion, Mark Skaife, said:

“I always look forward to the first hit out in Adelaide as it provides an immediate form guide for the season ahead. The great thing for fans is the continuation of the brand rivalry between DJR Team Penske with their factory supported Ford Mustangs and the Holden charge led by the Red Bull Holden Racing Team.

“For Scott McLaughlin it’s going to be slightly different as the defending champion and the way he approaches 2019. He’s had the benchmark pace as a qualifier in the last two seasons and given his new car he’ll be trying very hard to unearth the secrets of the Mustang to make it work best and give himself the best chance to go back-to-back.

“From a driver’s point of view this is one of the most gruelling race meetings of the season with the circuits unforgiving layout, the predicted heatwave conditions and the daunting

“Turn eight that year-on-year has catches out some of Australia’s best drivers.”

The Kayo coverage will include a new feature RaceView, which will launch in time for this season’s opening race.

RaceView will consist of three different camera modes including Co-Pilot View, an in-car driver camera, Heli View, a helicopter camera, and Race Centre, which will show the leaderboard and driver stats.

Supercars fans will be able to access all three unique camera modes at once, via the exclusive Kayo SplitView feature which provides Supercars fans with a whole new way to experience the on track action. Available for every qualifying and championship race of the 2019 season, viewers will be able to access the main race plus all three additional camera modes at once on web, tablet and selected TV devices. Users of the Kayo mobile app will be able to select two screens at once.

Kayo has every practice, qualifying session and race, live and ad-break free, of the 2019 Supercars season, with new customers able to sign up now and get streaming instantly with a 14-day free trial.

UK audiences soon to get new BBC/ITV streaming service

The BBC and ITV are in the concluding phase of talks to establish a strategic partnership to bring a new streaming service to UK audiences.

The BBC and ITV have agreed a joint vision for the service, to be called BritBox, and are now working on a formal legal agreement.

The BBC and ITV anticipate that other partners will be added to BritBox and both will speak to regulators and the wider industry about their proposals.

A joint announcement offered these details:

BritBox would be an original streaming service providing an unrivalled collection of British boxsets and original series, on demand, all in one place, and would provide:

The biggest collection of British content available on any streaming service.

Brand new commissions for British production companies specifically created for BritBox.

Carolyn McCall, CEO of ITV, commented on the news: “I am really pleased that ITV and the BBC are at the concluding stage of discussions to launch a new streaming service.

“BritBox will be the home for the best of British creativity – celebrating the best of the past, the best of today and investing in new British originated content in the future.”

BBC Director-General Tony Hall said: “I am delighted that the BBC and ITV are working together on something truly special – BritBox. A new streaming service delivering the best home-grown content to the public who love it best. The service will have everything from old favourites to recent shows and brand new commissions. It’s an exciting time for the viewing public.”

Both organisations are delighted with the success of their BritBox streaming service in North America, which is ahead of expectations, having already broken through targets with over half a million subscribers.

This success shows the BBC and ITV have the know-how to launch and manage a streaming service and research with the British public shows that there is a real appetite for a new British streaming service – in addition to their current subscriptions.

The aim is to launch the service in the second half of 2019. While neither the BBC or ITV can confirm pricing at this stage, it will be competitive. Consumers who are interested in subscribing to BritBox when it becomes available can do so now at

The BBC and ITV will provide a further update when a formal agreement is reached.

TV Ratings Analysis: February 27

• Married At First Sight ends week how it started: A winner
• Groups come together for elimination challenge on MKR
• Queen rock fan wins Hard Quiz, 10 share under pressure

Wednesday: Week 9 2019

By James Manning

FTA TV news/current affairs

• Seven News 963,000/923,000
• Nine News 901,000/883,000
• A Current Affair 765,000
• ABC News 698,000
• 7.30 584,000
• The Project 228,000/383,000
• 10 News First 362,000
• SBS World News 123,000

Breakfast TV

• Sunrise 265,000
• Today 192,000


Home And Away was in the mid 600,000s again last night after 605,000 Tuesday night and 642,000 on Monday.

Groups one and two came together for an elimination challenge on My Kitchen Rules. Leaving the show last night were group two’s Chris and Lesley with a less than perfect pasta. The last episode of the week did 740,000, which was the smallest audience of the week.

Undercurrent: Real Murder Investigation then did 450,000.


A Current Affair was over 765,000 for the second successive night after 883,000 on Monday. Belle Gibson was back in the news as ACA tracked her down flying into Australia.

It was dinner party time on Married With First Sight with the final episode of the week on 1.277m. The media continue to do a wonderful job promoting the series and amongst today’s hilarious headlines was “Drunk wife’s car-crash cheating spree”.

US medical drama New Amsterdam then did 436,000.


Tough night for The Project with more coverage of the Cardinal and Korea delivering a post-7pm audience of 383,000. At 6.30pm it was getting closer to 225,000.

Those numbers contributed to a mid-week primary share under 8%.

Two episodes of Bondi Rescue after 7.30pm were just over and just under 300,000.

Law & Order: SVU then did 195,000.


A Hard Quiz contestant who is a Queen (the rock band) fanatic won last night as the audience of 662,000 watched on.

Rosehaven then did 482,000 followed by Get Krackin’ on 227,000.


Secrets Of The Toy Shop: Inside Hanley’s grabbed the biggest audience with 212,000.

A little earlier Great British Railway Journeys did 181,000.

Week 9 TV: Wednesday
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 12.1% 7 20.9% 9 25.9% 10  7.6% SBS One 4.4%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.2% 7TWO 3.1% GO! 3.4% 10 Bold 4.3% VICELAND 1.3%
ABC ME 0.7% 7mate 2.5% GEM 1.8% 10 Peach 2.0% Food Net 0.9%
ABC NEWS 1.7% 7flix 1.6% 9Life 2.4%     NITV 0.1%
    7Food 0.9%            
TOTAL 16.8%   29.1%   33.5%   13.9%   6.7%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.3% 7 21.8% 9 19.9% WIN 8.3% SBS One 3.7%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 3.1% 7TWO 4.9% GO! 4.2% WIN Bold 3.3% VICELAND 1.8%
ABC ME 1.0% 7mate 3.4% GEM 3.4% WIN Peach 2.1% Food Net 0.7%
ABC NEWS 1.5% 7flix 2.5% 9Life 2.1% Sky News  on WIN 0.8% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 16.9%   32.6%   29.6%   14.5%   6.4%


87.2% 12.8%
  1. Married At First Sight Nine 1,277,000
  2. Seven News Seven 963,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 923,000
  4. Nine News Nine 901,000
  5. Nine News 6:30 Nine 883,000
  6. A Current Affair Nine 765,000
  7. My Kitchen Rules Seven 740,000
  8. ABC News ABC 698,000
  9. Hard Quiz S4 ABC 662,000
  10. Home And Away Seven 647,000
  11. 7.30 ABC 584,000
  12. The Chase Australia Seven 545,000
  13. Rosehaven ABC 482,000
  14. Hot Seat Nine 481,000
  15. Undercurrent: Real Murder Investigation Seven 450,000
  16. New Amsterdam Nine 436,000
  17. The Project 7pm 10 383,000
  18. 10 News First 10 362,000
  19. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 348,000
  20. Bondi Rescue 10 312,000
Demo Top 5

16-39 Top Five

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 386,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 135,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 126,000
  4. A Current Affair Nine 126,000
  5. Nine News Nine 121,000


18-49 Top Five

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 632,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 252,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 231,000
  4. Nine News Nine 222,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 209,000


25-54 Top Five

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 683,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 301,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 266,000
  4. Nine News Nine 261,000
  5. Seven News Seven 260,000
WEDNESDAY Multichannel
  1. Go Jetters PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 174,000
  2. Bluey PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 166,000
  3. Peppa Pig PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 158,000
  4. Talking Married 9Life 152,000
  5. Pj Masks PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 150,000
  6. School Of Roars AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 149,000
  7. Rusty Rivets PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 148,000
  8. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 144,000
  9. Peppa Pig AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 141,000
  10. NCIS: Los Angeles (R) 10 Bold 138,000
  11. NCIS (R) 10 Bold 133,000
  12. Bondi Rescue Ep 3 (R) 10 Bold 133,000
  13. Kiddets AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 132,000
  14. Hey Duggee AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 127,000
  15. Noddy Toyland Detective PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 127,000
  16. Dino Dana ABCKIDS/COMEDY 125,000
  17. NCIS: Los Angeles Ep 2 (R) 10 Bold 123,000
  18. Thomas And Friends PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 119,000
  19. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 119,000
  20. The Big Bang Theory   Tx1 9GO! 119,000
  1. Gogglebox Australia Lifestyle Channel 144,000
  2. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 52,000
  3. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 50,000
  4. The Simpsons FOX8 45,000
  5. Family Guy FOX8 44,000
  6. PML Later Sky News Live 44,000
  7. Kirstie And Phil’s Love It Or List It Lifestyle Channel 39,000
  8. NCIS TVH!TS 37,000
  9. Family Guy FOX8 36,000
  10. American Dad! FOX8 36,000
  11. The Great British Bake Off Lifestyle FOOD 35,000
  12. Beverly Hills: Real Housewives Of… ARENA 34,000
  13. American Dad! FOX8 34,000
  14. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 33,000
  15. Roswell, New Mexico FOX8 33,000
  16. Credlin Sky News Live 32,000
  17. Pj Masks Disney Junior 32,000
  18. Gogglebox Australia Lifestyle Channel+2 31,000
  19. Avengers: Infinity War Foxtel Movies Premier 31,000
  20. Live: Twenty20: India V Australia Game 2 FOX CRICKET 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

Commercial radio industry welcomes changes to outdated regulations

The commercial radio industry has welcomed Special Minister of State the Alex Hawke’s changes to out-dated regulations restricting how parliamentarians can use their annual office communications allowances to communicate with their constituents.

Joan Warner, chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia, said: “The radio industry applauds the non-partisan modernisation of an out of date regulation. This is a move that now allows all parliamentarians to communicate their messages on live and local radio. This is just one of a number of old rules that, until now, hadn’t kept pace with the current media landscape and that explicitly discriminated against local radio stations.

“This will be a welcome change for MPs and senators from all sides of politics who had been able to use this annual allowance on newspapers, direct mail, outdoor and global digital giants such as Facebook, Google, Instagram and Twitter but were banned from using local radio. This is especially important in regional Australia where radio is live and hyperlocal,“ she said.

The funds are annual allocations, not linked to elections, and the radio industry is encouraging all sides of politics to support the lifting of this inequitable and discriminatory ban, which now allows local radio stations to be considered as an option for communications by all members of parliament.

Seek reports first half revenue up 11%, Asia grows 18%

Seek said its first half net profit after tax slipped 4.9% to $99.3 million because of new investments. Revenue jumped 21% to $757.2 million and EBITDA climbed 6% to $238.5 million, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.

Despite a soft Australian economy, Seek had 11% growth in revenue to $221.7 million for its Australia and New Zealand business in the first half, and EBITDA growth of 13% to $137.5 million. The company said this growth was primarily driven by increased use of premium products, such as paying more for prominent job ads.

Seek Asia revenue surged 18% in the half to $84.7 million, delivering EBITDA growth of 17% to $44.6 million.

[Read the original]

ABC acting MD David Anderson endorses Ita Buttrose as chair

The ABC’s acting leadership last night endorsed journalist and businesswoman Ita Buttrose’s appointment as chair of the national broadcaster, report The Australian’s Rosie Lewis and Greg Brown.

David Anderson, the ABC acting managing director, said Buttrose was an “eminent Australian with vast experience as an editor and media executive”.

“Her leadership of the ABC, a highly valued and trusted cultural institution, is welcomed,” he said.

Kirstin Ferguson, the ABC acting chair, said Buttrose would be a valuable addition to the ABC board.

“Ita Buttrose is one of the greats of Australian media — and an iconic, widely admired Australian,” she said.

[Read the original]

Village Roadshow executive casting a thriller with another Kirby rising

The Village Roadshow executive dramas have played out as publicly as a Hollywood blockbuster and it seems the finale has yet to be reached, reports The Australian’s Scott Murdoch.

The company’s decision to announce Clark Kirby, the son of executive chairman Robert Kirby, is a leading candidate for chief executive has led to corporate governance questions from investors and advisers.

Egon Zehnder is expected to be given the job of finding a replacement for long-serving boss Graham Burke, who has announced he will retire at the end of the year.

The firm has been hunting for a new independent director to join the board since David Evans left at the end of last year, so its job will now become twofold. The search is expected to take at least six months.

In an odd move last week, the company said Village Roadshow Theme Parks chairman and chief executive Clark Kirby would put his hand up for the job.

[Read the original]

News Brands

Legendary broadcaster Billy J Smith dies after fall on Brisbane Street

One of the most iconic voices in Queensland media for over 50 years fell silent today when Billy J Smith died in hospital aged 73.

Billy J, who called everything from State of Origin to the game show It’s A Knockout and was Brisbane’s answer to the acid-tongued American Don Rickles as he roasted anyone unlucky enough to win a raffle or wear a loud tie at one of the many functions he hosted, suffered head injuries after a fall on Caxton St after a day out with friends on Tuesday.

Billy’s close friend and work colleague for many years Pat Welsh paid tribute to a man he described as a “great mentor and drinking mate.”

“Billy had a triple bypass two Christmases ago and we thought we’d lost him then so we’ve had him as a bonus since then,” he said.

On both television and radio Billy J was for many years one of the best known media personalities in Queensland, calling rugby league and hosting a variety of programs including the first local version of what became The Footy Show.

[Read the original]

Facebook’s $5m olive branch to Australian publishers

Facebook is extending an olive branch to Australian publishers to help them generate better profits from social media amid fierce criticism from the competition watchdog that it and Google are not doing enough to promote journalism, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.

On Thursday, Facebook will announce a partnership with the Walkley Foundation to bring its Facebook Journalism Project News Accelerator to Australia – the first place outside the US it will be launched.

The $5 million package will be used to teach news organisations how to monetise audiences better on Facebook, and to fund a pilot program on news literacy, largely for high school students, to help combat fake news.

Facebook is also partnering with Peter Greste’s Alliance for Journalists’ Freedom, which promotes media freedom in the Asia-Pacific region and helps journalists, particularly women, who experience abuse online.

“We’re really focusing on improving monetisation in 2019 for publishers,” Facebook Australia and New Zealand news partnerships lead Andrew Hunter said.

[Read the original]

Andrew Bolt: Why I can’t be silent on George Pell’s guilty verdict

I knew defending Cardinal George Pell could get me lynched. I want to explain to the people now wanting my blood why I did it, writes News Corp columnist Andrew Bolt.

But first, something about this hatred for Pell. It is intense, lavish, unbridled, and at times shamefully self-indulgent. Some haters love hating.

And there were today’s headlines, almost gloating. “Hideous hypocrisy: Pell has reached the nadir of disgrace,” shouted The Age, which has demonised Pell for two decades – first for being conservative, then for allegedly shielding paedophiles and finally for allegedly being a paedophile himself. And always for being a Catholic.

[Read the original]

White House bans four journalists from covering Trump-Kim dinner

The White House abruptly banned four US journalists from covering President Donald Trump’s dinner on Wednesday with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un after some of them shouted questions at the leaders during their earlier meetings, reports The Washington Post.

Reporters from the Associated Press, Bloomberg News, the Los Angeles Times and Reuters were excluded from covering the dinner because of what White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said were “sensitivities over shouted questions in the previous sprays”. Among the questions asked of Trump was one about the congressional testimony of his former lawyer, Michael Cohen.

Trump’s exchanges with Kim were being covered by the standard 13-member travelling White House press pool.

After loud pushback, including from photojournalists who protested, Sanders allowed a single reporter in the pool for the dinner: Vivian Salama of The Wall Street Journal, who was serving as the print pooler and did not ask a question at the dinner. In addition, at least two members of the North Korean media contingent, a photographer and cameraman, were seen covering the dinner.

[Read the original]


marie claire and Pacific partner with agencies for Stop the Violence

To mark International Women’s Day, Pacific’s marie claire has partnered with five Australian creative agencies to address the frightening increase in cases of domestic violence, leading a campaign that will be supported by the entire Pacific business and its portfolio of brands.

In 2018, Australia experienced an epidemic of fatal violence against women, the majority at the hands of a partner. A staggering 69 lives were lost – a 30% increase on the year before.

To address this national crisis, marie claire asked local agencies to devise a campaign to help protect the lives of Australian women. The brand will promote the message across its own assets, which will then be amplified throughout the Pacific network.

Ads created by Ogilvy, DDB Sydney, McCann Australia, 303 Mullenlowe and Junior Massive appear in the April issue of marie claire as well as online, with the campaign amplified across marie claire’s more than 1.2 million touchpoints.

Nicky Briger, editor of marie claire, said: “At marie claire, we have long campaigned to raise awareness of the shocking incidence of domestic violence in Australia. When we saw that violence against women is actually increasing, we were stunned into action and decided to partner with these agencies to find new ways to agitate for change. What they came up with is both moving and shocking.

“Also, in the coming weeks, one creative from the campaign will be published across Pacific’s portfolio of print and digital assets. This is a cause that is important to our entire business, and this will ensure we reach an audience of millions, helping to extend the #StopTheViolence message beyond marie claire.”


Man with terminal illness achieves lifelong commercial radio dream

An Australian man with terminal cancer has achieved his lifelong dream of hosting a prime-time commercial radio show, reports The Age’s Broede Carmody.

Listeners to Melbourne’s Gold 104.3 were greeted with an unfamiliar voice on Wednesday morning, after popular breakfast host Christian O’Connell temporarily stepped away from the microphone.

His replacement was Peter Logan, an aviation freight worker from the Macedon Ranges. The 54-year-old was recently diagnosed with late-stage bowel cancer and has been told he could have just 18 months left to live.

Logan has always wanted to host his own show on commercial radio, and completed a broadcasting short course around 30 years ago. However, the need to take care of his young family at the time meant he never got his start in the industry he loves.

When O’Connell called to say he wanted Logan to host what would be called The Peter Logan Breakfast Show with Christian O’Connell on Wednesday, the aviation worker was gobsmacked. The Gold team even had branded mugs and T-shirts printed for the occasion.

[Read the original]


Women of Erinsborough Unite: International Women’s Day special

For the very first time Neighbours will air an all-female episode on Friday March 8 in celebration of International Women’s Day.

While the drama never stops in Ramsay Street, some of the women take time out to honour one of Sonya Rebecchi’s (Eve Morey) final wishes – to acknowledge, celebrate and support women, to share their female heroes with each other and to help those in need.

Piper (Mavournee Hazel) and Terese Willis (Rebekah Elmaloglou) resolve to finish one of Sonya’s final community initiatives and package together all the donations for the women’s shelter and distribute them.

As the pair commence rallying their fellow neighbours to assist them, Piper decides that she will interview each of the women in Ramsay Street about their female heroes for a special episode on her video blog. And, just for a moment all the drama fades away, as they each reflect on the women that have helped shape them, inspire them and motivate them.

Neighbours actress, Jackie Woodburne said: “International Women’s Day is so important because it reminds us that we still have a way to go in gender equity.

“It’s a global drive, but to see it reflected in the context of a suburban town like Erinsborough, makes it more personal and relevant to us all. I’m so proud Neighbours continues to address current and relevant issues in such an entertaining and accessible way,” Jackie said.

Network Ten executive producer of Neighbours Sara Richardson said: “International Women’s Day is a time to reflect on progress, to call for change and to celebrate the courage and determination of women. We have a brilliant and inclusive team on Neighbours who are proud to celebrate and recognise the crucial role of women. We want this generation and the next to know they can achieve anything they set their minds to.”

Secret City returns, Anna Torv again immersed in a thorny conspiracy

One way to measure Anna Torv’s successful stint in Los Angeles is through technology. When the Australian actor first relocated to the capital of commercial television in 2008 to pursue roles the world was far less wired and phones were definitely not smart.

“My show reel was on a DVD and I was going to internet cafes every day to check my e-mail for possible meetings and because it was prohibitively expensive to call home,” remembers Torv. “You would get online and use a map program to figure out where you had to go for that day’s auditions, and if you deviated from that route you got totally lost.”

Torv definitely found her way. The 39-year-old, who now calls Los Angeles her “work home”, has built a successful career playing resolute and multi-layered women on successful American series such as J.J. Abrams’ science-fiction labyrinth Fringe and Netflix’s serial killer period drama Mindhunter. She also headlined one of Foxtel’s best Australian dramas, the 2016 security state mystery Secret City, which returns next week for a second season.

[Read the original]

Shaynna Blaze tells how Selling Houses dodged real estate slump

There is nothing like a real estate downturn to test your abilities and that is what Shaynna Blaze is confronting on Selling Houses Australia this year, reports News Corp’s Colin Vickery.

For 11 seasons, the team on Selling Houses Australia – Blaze, Andrew Winter and Charlie Albone – have had the benefit of making over homes in a hot property market.

Sure, the premise of the Foxtel show is that the houses that the trio take on have been languishing unsold for months.

But there has always been every faith that once the trio of experts worked their magic it wouldn’t be long before a “sold” sign is out front.

But in 2019 – maybe not so much.

“The whole premise of Selling Houses Australia is selling the unsellable,” Blaze says. “The market is bad and banks squeezing lending has become a big issue.

“I think we’ve been lucky that the houses we are usually working with aren’t investment houses.

“But because people have to have bigger deposits these days, there is nothing left for renovations.”

That means that, more than ever, sellers have to make their homes move-in-ready. The kerb appeal also has to be spot on. None of the homes on this year’s season of Selling Houses Australia qualify.”

[Read the original]

To Top