Wednesday June 6, 2018

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News Corp’s ambition for audio: ‘We’ve created the world’s most measurable radio station’

• Head of print innovation Zac Skulander talks hybrid radio shows and the future of newspapers

By Kruti Joshi

News Corp’s internet radio show, Miranda Live, is the first of many to come.

The company’s head of print innovation, Zac Skulander (pictured above), was one of the two people behind its ideation and launch five months ago. The other person was The Daily Telegraph editor Christopher Dore.

• Mathematics to journalism: Inside Miranda Devine’s new radio show

“What we’ve created is the world’s most measurable radio station,” Skulander told Mediaweek. “I don’t have people that are filling out paper diaries and then getting a ‘guestimation’ of what the size of the audience is. I know precisely how many people are listening, when they are listening, how long they are listening for and where they are.”

Miranda Devine recording Miranda Live with PM Malcolm Turnbull

The idea of creating an internet radio show came from the want to utilise News Corp’s editorial resources better, as well as create a new avenue for advertisers.

“Newspapers set the agenda. It’s one of those things that we often say in the market. To be honest, it wasn’t until I started working in other media that I realised the important role newspapers play in the content that other media companies report on,” Skulander said.

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

Stan rings a big bell as it announces 1m subscribers

At an event in Sydney on Tuesday night, the Fairfax and Nine-owned streaming service Stan announced, in just over three years since launching, the business’s active subscriber base has now surpassed one million households and continues to grow.

There was no accompanying announcement from Stan CEO Mike Sneesby about profitability. However, that is expected to be revealed by Fairfax and Nine CEOs Greg Hywood and Hugh Marks when they reveal their full year results in August.

To celebrate the one million customer milestone, Sneesby showed guests the small bell that is rung in the Stan office every time they reach a milestone. He then replaced it with a bigger new bell, which he said was necessary for the size of this milestone.

Stan also revealed a number of new studio output deals and announced three new Australian content commissions.

Stan has signed a long-term exclusive output deal with Hollywood studio Lionsgate, which will make Stan the Home of STARZ, bringing all their future STARZ produced series and hundreds of hours of STARZ and Lionsgate programming to Stan.

The streaming service also announced a multiyear exclusive output deal with MGM. The deal will bring all future MGM drama series and hundreds of hours of MGM TV series and movies, including the Bond franchise, to Stan.

The three new Australian commissions are:

• Stan Original Series Bloom, a six-part mystery drama from Playmaker, in partnership with Sony Pictures Television, who will distribute the premium drama globally. The series will go into production in August and will premiere exclusively on Stan later this year.

• The Gloaming, created by The Kettering Incident’s Victoria Madden, has been commissioned as a Stan Original Series. Produced by Madden and John Molloy (Molly, Boys in the Trees) and in partnership with Disney’s ABC Studios International, who will also distribute the series internationally, production will commence in Tasmania in the second half of 2018. The series will premiere exclusively on Stan in early 2019. Madden told guests that despite working with Foxtel on her previous series, Stan was her first choice of a home for The Gloaming.

• No Activity will return with a stand-alone Christmas special. The brand-new show, No Activity: The Night Before Christmas, will reunite the original award-winning creative team of Patrick Brammall (Glitch, Upper Middle Bogan, A Moody Christmas) and Trent O’Donnell (New Girl, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Good Place, A Moody Christmas), who will also direct, as well as series producer, Jungle Entertainment. Production will commence in the second half of 2018, to premiere on Stan in December. The announcement was made by Brammall and O’Donnell via a pre-recorded video message from Los Angeles.

Mike Sneesby, Stan’s CEO said: “The Australian television landscape continues to change rapidly and with that change, the ambitions and opportunities for Stan continue to grow. We have set out to pioneer the future of television in Australia and today’s subscriber milestone is a great indication of how quickly Aussies are changing their TV viewing habits.

“Premium programming is the key driver of our business growth and strategy and today we have announced some important strategic partnerships that will help us continue to change the face of television in Australia. With these new partnerships with STARZ and MGM it’s clear we’re only just getting started. Bloom and The Gloaming will be our two biggest Original productions yet, each in partnership with major Hollywood studios, and we couldn’t be more excited to make a return to our first Original, with a very special new instalment of No Activity this Christmas. Stan has truly become the Australian home of major networks and Hollywood studios, alongside fresh and groundbreaking local productions.”

Legendary Adelaide news leader stepping down

Graham Archer, director of news and public affairs at Seven Adelaide, has announced he is leaving Seven West Media.

Archer started his career at Nine’s A Current Affair as an editor, researcher, producer and journalist. He also worked for the ABC’s 7.30 Report and was the supervising producer on Nine’s Sunday program in Sydney. He returned to Adelaide to establish the local version of Today Tonight.

Today Tonight premiered on January 30, 1995 with Leigh McClusky as host and Archer as executive producer. Current presenter Rosanna Mangiarelli began hosting in August 2007.

Today Tonight has won a record 684 consecutive weeks of official ratings, making it the most successful program ever produced in South Australia.

In 2016 Archer was appointed director of news and public affairs at Seven Adelaide. In that role he has overseen the introduction of an extra hour of daily news from 4pm-5pm and has also extended 6pm’s unbeaten ratings record to 469 successive weekly survey wins.

Last year Archer was a finalist in the 2017 Walkley Awards in the book category for “Unmaking a Murder: The Mysterious Death of Anna-Jane Cheney”.

Archer said: “It’s been a privilege to work for the Seven Network and with the many fine staff members. I hope that through my work at Seven I have contributed to making this State a fairer place.”

Seven Network director of news and public affairs Craig McPherson said: “I want to thank Graham for his extraordinary career at Channel 7. As one of the founding state EPs of a new current affairs program launched at the start of 1995, Graham was instrumental in helping Today Tonight become the most watched current affairs program in Australia within a few years. He steered the program to dominance in Adelaide over two decades, along the way mentoring many.

“He stepped into the dual role of Today Tonight EP and Adelaide News Director with the same passion and drive, continuing the success of a fantastic news team.

“We wish him the very best in the next chapter of his life.”

Archer’s replacement will be current Seven Adelaide deputy news director Chris Salter.

Over the past 20 years, Salter has held several senior roles in Adelaide newsrooms.

Radio ratings: Analysis of every commercial station in Sydney & Melbourne

Mediaweek editor James Manning looks at the third radio ratings survey for 2018 in Sydney and Melbourne.

• GfK Radio Ratings, Survey 3 2018: Highlights + full results


3AW 14.4% (Survey 2, 2018 13.7%)
Best result for the station and breakfast this year. Share for Ross and John in breakfast is back to 20%, which is close to where they were for five of the last six surveys last year. Share 65+ lifted 4.6 to 33.2%.

Gold 104.3 10.6% (10.0%)
Imagine having your station ranking #1 FM just the day after your new breakfast superstar arrives for his new show! That’s perhaps a good problem to have – although the next few surveys will tell the tale there. This is the third time in two years station share has been in double figures. It is also the second-highest breakfast share in two years. The station highpoint is afternoon while Gold also does big business in morning and drive with music shows pumping out a very successful music mix. It will take a few surveys to get an idea of how the new breakfast show with Christian O’Connell will go in the ratings. Gold has pushed clear to lead 40-54 after sharing top spot with Triple M last survey.

Continued at


2GB 12.7% (11.5% in Survey 2, 2018)
Strong survey again with all dayparts growing. 2GB recorded its highest share since 13.0% in survey 7, 2016. Station is #1 overall in breakfast, morning and evening, but not very far off the pace in afternoon and drive. Share dropped a little 55-64 to 11.6%, but climbed 65+ to 30.5%.

WSFM 9.7% (8.4%)
Jonesy and Amanda knocked it out of the park this survey with breakfast climbing 1.3 to 9.4%, which is their best result this year and just short of three successive surveys they had over 10% at the end of 2017. WSFM is #1 FM in morning and #1 overall in afternoon. And just look at these demos moves – #1 40-54 with share up 4.2 to 15.1% and #1 55-64 with share up 7.7 to 17.9%.

Continued at 

Australia and NZ news publishers win big at INMA 2018 Global Media Awards

News Corp Australia was recognised as the best news media publisher in the Asia Pacific region at the International News Media Association’s 2018 Global Media Awards held in Washington DC recently.

The publisher won the Best in Asia Pacific (Local and Regional Brands) for News Advance Program.

The program also won first place in the Grow Advertising Sales or Retain Clients category. Meanwhile, News Corp also picked up the first place award in The Best Use of a Brand or Product to Create an Audience Segment category for its Local Sports Stars initiative.

Overall, Australian and New Zealand news media publishers won 14 medals at INMA’s 2018 Global Media Awards. The region’s news publishers scooped 29 mentions in total, with four first-place, six second-place, four third-place and 14 honourable mentions.

Fairfax Media ACM won the Best Use of Consumer Research category for InsightsPlus.

Commenting from the INMA Awards, NewsMediaWorks CEO Peter Miller said: “The wins for news publishers in Australia and New Zealand reflect our region’s culture of product, brand, commercial and corporate innovation. The INMA Awards are considered highly prestigious in news publishing, with a number of senior executives from Australia and New Zealand publishers in attendance.”

Australian news media publishers this year scored a record 23 finalist nominations, the third-highest in the world from a field of 39 countries. There were 800 entries into 20 categories from 220 media companies globally and 195 finalists adjudicated by a panel of 50 judges.

The INMA 2018 Global Media Awards were held at The Meade Centre for American Theatre in Washington DC with more than 400 participants attending from around the world.

Full list of winners from Australia and NZ at

SBS launches 2018 FIFA World Cup marketing campaign

SBS has launched a new cross-platform campaign called “We All Speak Football” to promote its coverage of the FIFA World Cup.

Optus Sport reveals new 2018 FIFA World Cup campaign
• SBS announces World Cup match broadcast schedule

The campaign will utilise heavy radio and digital activity to drive its listenership for nightly matches and encourage downloads of the official 2018 FIFA World Cup app, available for iOS and Android from June 11.

SBS director of marketing Jane Palfreyman said, “Football is a sport that unites the world’s diverse communities through its passion and emotion. The aim of our campaign is to extend the concept that we all speak the language of football, regardless of where you’re from.”

In addition to the match of the day live, replays and the 5.30pm live highlights show, SBS will update audiences throughout the tournament via an early morning edition of The World Game podcast, produced by SBS Radio with analysis and opinion by Craig Foster and Lucy Zelic from Red Square. SBS will also have newsletters, a nightly Twitter live show and bite-sized recaps of the games.

SBS Radio will cover the games in various languages including Arabic, French, German, Spanish and Portuguese.

In partnership with the Australian Government, SBS Learn has created an in-depth education resource called The Harmony Game, which links the 2018 FIFA World Cup to subjects including English, Geography and Health and Physical Education. This resource will be mailed to over 12,000 Australian teachers. It is also freely available online via SBS Learn alongside a suite of other football-inspired classroom materials.

SBS is presenting the 2018 FIFA World Cup from Russia in partnership with Optus Sport. The tournament kicks off on June 14.

Endemol Shine announces first international deal for Nine's Family Food Fight

Endemol Shine has secured the first international deal for entertainment culinary format Family Food Fight.

Endemol Shine North America has been commissioned by ABC America to produce an eight-part series of the Australian format. To be hosted by restaurateur, food maven and NY Times best-selling cookbook author Ayesha Curry, the competition will feature eight families from across the country sharing both a common kitchen and a common goal: to claim the title of America’s No. 1 Food Family.

Created by Endemol Shine Australia, Family Food Fight is an original format developed with Nine Australia, where the series has been renewed for a second season.

Ayesha Curry

Lisa Perrin, CEO of Creative Networks, Endemol Shine Group, said; “We are incredibly proud of Family Food Fight at Endemol Shine Group. It is a fresh, fun and diverse show which celebrates all the best aspects of a successful family friendly format. We’re sure that the deal with ABC in the US will supercharge interest in the series in other territories and look forward to seeing what the teams do with it for the ABC audience.”

Mark Fennessy, CEO at Endemol Shine Australia, added; “We’re delighted that Family Food Fight is set to go international with a new home and partner in ABC with the very fabulous Ayesha Curry. As the second Australian series ramps up we’re confident this is the first of many new territories taking on such a unique format that puts passionate multicultural and multigenerational foodie families to the test.”

Family Food Fight will take homestyle cooking to a new level as family recipes, rich in tradition and shared over generations, are put on display. Rather than five-star restaurant cuisine, the show will focus on relatable yet aspirational, home-cooked meals, inspiring budding home cooks across the nation to don their aprons and get into the kitchen together.”

TV Ratings Analysis: Tuesday June 5

• Seven gets biggest primary and combined channel shares
• TEN leads with viewers 25-54 with chefs and sharks
• Kiss of death? Interview drops 200,000 with Gene Simmons chat
• Patti Newton in season final of Who Do You Think You Are? top 20


Home and Away had its second successive night in the 690,000s.

House Rules saw the contestants at work on Leigh and Kristie’s home, where one of the requests was for “California cool”. The Tuesday ep did 674,000 after 729,000 a week ago.

Interview, coincidentally (?), featured Gene Simmons in a satellite interview and an embalmer talking about the human body at the end of the road. The episode did 368,000 after 560,000 last week.

Gene Simmons on Andrew Denton’s Interview


A Current Affair was again very close to 900,000 with reports on a phone scam and swimmer Geoff Huegill’s publicist wife Sara.

The first night of Buying Blind did 608,000. The show ran third in the 7.30pm slot, although it had a bigger audience than House Rules in Sydney and Melbourne. There was plenty of host Shaynna Blaze and her design smarts – both in the show and some of the ad breaks. It’s a great concept – handing over your savings to the show’s specialists who buy a property and then renovate it.


Orange Is The New Black star, broadcaster and comedian Lea DeLaria featured on The Project for the 7pm audience of 566,000.

MasterChef Tuesday means an immunity challenge and Jessica Liemantara couldn’t quite manage to win the third pin in three weeks. The episode was on 852,000 – winning again in key demos – after 881,000 on Tuesday last week.

Shark Tank then saw plenty of offers from the sharks as the episode did 560,000. Most intriguing deal of the night was Naomi Simpson offering $100,000 for 25% of a chicken donut and nuggets business, Donugs!



After launching with 615,000 last week, Annabel Crabb’s Back In Time For Dinner was in the 1960s with 622,000 watching.

Making Child Prodigies did 400,000.


The season final already of Who Do You Think You Are? with Patti Newton featured for the audience of 404,000.

Insight then did 191,000.

Week 23 TV: Tuesday
ABC Seven Nine Ten SBS
ABC 12.3% 7 17.7% 9 17.0% TEN 15.8% SBS One 5.8%
ABC 2 2.8% 7TWO 3.3% GO! 3.7% ONE 2.9% VICELAND 1.3%
ABC ME 0.6% 7mate 5.1% GEM 3.5% ELEVEN 2.8% Food Net 1.0%
ABC NEWS 1.4% 7flix 1.8% 9Life 1.1% NITV 0.1%
TOTAL 17.1% 27.9% 25.3% 21.5% 8.2%
ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates Ten Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.2% 7 18.6% 9 13.1% WIN 12.6% SBS One 5.6%
ABC 2 3.0% 7TWO 4.9% GO! 3.8% ONE 2.7% VICELAND 1.7%
ABC ME 0.9% 7mate 6.7% GEM 6.7% ELEVEN 3.6% Food Net 0.9%
ABC NEWS 1.2% 7flix 1.5% 9Life 1.1% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 16.3% 31.7% 24.7% 18.9% 8.4%
85.5% 14.5%
Tuesday FTA
  1. Seven News Seven 1,077,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 1,050,000
  3. Nine News Nine 1,025,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 1,019,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 893,000
  6. MasterChef Australia Ten 852,000
  7. ABC News ABC 702,000
  8. Home And Away Seven 695,000
  9. House Rules – Tue Seven 674,000
  10. The Chase Australia Seven 665,000
  11. Back In Time For Dinner ABC 622,000
  12. Buying Blind Nine 608,000
  13. Hot Seat Nine 579,000
  14. The Project 7pm Ten 566,000
  15. Shark Tank Ten 560,000
  16. 7.30-Ev ABC 531,000
  17. Ten Eyewitness News First At Five Ten 457,000
  18. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 415,000
  19. Who Do You Think You Are? SBS 404,000
  20. Making Child Prodigies ABC 400,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. MasterChef Australia Ten 277,000
  2. Shark Tank Ten 223,000
  3. The Project 7pm Ten 180,000
  4. House Rules – Tue Seven 174,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 172,000


18-49 Top 5

  1. MasterChef Australia Ten 435,000
  2. Shark Tank Ten 309,000
  3. House Rules – Tue Seven 292,000
  4. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 278,000
  5. Seven News Seven 275,000


25-54 Top 5

  1. MasterChef Australia Ten 481,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 347,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 346,000
  4. Seven News Seven 344,000
  5. Nine News Nine 335,000
Tuesday Multichannel
  1. Outback Truckers-PM 7mate 256,000
  2. PJ Masks-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 210,000
  3. Dinosaur Train ABCKIDS/COMEDY 207,000
  4. Peter Rabbit ABCKIDS/COMEDY 199,000
  5. Highway Patrol-E2 Pm 7mate 194,000
  6. Teacup Travels-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 194,000
  7. Peppa Pig-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 193,000
  8. Andy’s Baby Animals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 186,000
  9. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 185,000
  10. Floogals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 185,000
  11. Kazoops!-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 181,000
  12. Hey Duggee-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 179,000
  13. Go Jetters-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 174,000
  14. Peppa Pig-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 173,000
  15. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 173,000
  16. Highway Patrol-PM 7mate 171,000
  17. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 169,000
  18. Luo Bao Bei-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 167,000
  19. Full Custom Garage-PM 7mate 167,000
  20. Fireman Sam-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 162,000
Tuesday Subscription TV
  1. Live: AFL 360 FOX FOOTY 89,000
  2. Live: NRL 360 FOX LEAGUE 64,000
  3. Jones & Co SKY NEWS LIVE 59,000
  4. Top Wing Nick Jr. 58,000
  5. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 58,000
  6. Live: Back Page FOX SPORTS 50 1 52,000
  7. Paul Murray Live SKY NEWS LIVE 51,000
  8. Family Guy FOX8 50,000
  9. The Bolt Report SKY NEWS LIVE 48,000
  10. Bones TVH!TS 46,000
  11. Open Mike FOX FOOTY 46,000
  12. Family Guy FOX8 43,000
  13. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 43,000
  14. Midway FOX Classics 40,000
  15. The Fan FOX LEAGUE 40,000
  16. NCIS TVH!TS 39,000
  17. Muppet Babies Disney Junior 39,000
  18. Beat Bugs Nick Jr. 37,000
  19. Shimmer And Shine Nick Jr. 37,000
  20. Nella The Princess Knight Nick Jr. 36,000

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

Fairfax Media & NZME accuse Kiwi competition regulator of “unhelpful” rhetoric

Fairfax Media and NZME have accused the Kiwi competition regulator of invoking “unhelpful” rhetoric about the supposed major consequences to New Zealand democracy to scuttle the proposed merger between the two, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.

In submissions made to the Court of Appeal of New Zealand, where a hearing began on Tuesday, Fairfax’s New Zealand division – rebranded Stuff – and NZME are arguing the New Zealand Commerce Commission has not provided enough detrimental impacts from the proposed transaction to outweigh the benefits.

The appeal, which began on Monday, will go on for the rest of the week. If successful, Fairfax and NZME have flagged they will need to renegotiate terms of the merger because the media landscape in NZ has changed dramatically since the deal was first announced. In February, Fairfax flagged it will exit 35% of its NZ publications, or around 28 titles, through sale or closure.

[Read the original]

UK government says Fox can consolidate Sky ownership if it sells Sky News

The British government has indicated it wouldn’t block a long-delayed deal by Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox Inc to consolidate ownership of British pay-TV giant Sky, but would only give the green light after hashing out the details of a planned divestment of Sky’s news operations, reports The Wall Street Journal.

The decision by Britain’s culture secretary pushes back any final signoff on Murdoch’s bid for all of Sky and complicates a much bigger shakeup in the media industry. Cable giant Comcast Corp. is also bidding for Sky, and British Culture Secretary Matt Hancock said Tuesday the government found no objection for that deal going through.

That technically gives Comcast a slight advantage in their competing bids for Sky. But Hancock said blocking a Fox-Sky deal was “not my preferred approach” and that he was “optimistic” that the government could reach an agreement with Fox. He laid out a timeline of 15 days to reach a deal.

[Read the original]

Giles Martin appointed INXS and Petrol Records’ executive music director

Producer, composer and arranger Giles Martin has been announced as INXS and Petrol Records’ new executive music director.

Giles Martin

Martin will have a creative overview on all audio aspects of INXS developments, including an upcoming documentary, live theatre show and the band’s forthcoming repackaged, remixed and expanded studio albums, to be released via Universal Music Group (UMG) in partnership with Petrol Records

INXS’s most recent collaboration with Martin saw him mixing their classic, multiplatinum album “Kick” in Dolby Atmos with Sam Okell at Abbey Road Studios for the recording’s 30th anniversary reissue in 2017 via UMG.

INXS celebrate 50 million record sales at an exclusive masquerade ball last year

Son of the legendary Sir George Martin, Giles Martin first met INXS in 1994 when working on The Great Music Experience, a concert starring Japanese and international musicians staged at the eighth century Buddhist temple of Tōdai-ji, in Nara, Japan. The chance meeting was the starting point for almost 25 years of friendship and an innate musical bond that led to Martin working on the band’s “Greatest Hits” compilation and subsequent projects.



Bauer Media acquires News Corp brands Inside Out, Country Style and HomeLife

Bauer Media has acquired magazines Inside Out and Country Style and Homes website from News Corp Australia.

They join Bauer’s existing suite of Homes magazines, which are Real Living, Australian House and Garden and Belle. These offerings are complemented by the publisher’s Homes to Love digital platform for this category.

The general manager for publishing at Bauer Media, Fiorella Di Santo, said: “We’re thrilled to bring Inside Out, Country Style and to Bauer. Although we already have a strong position in the Homes category, this acquisition is a natural fit for us in terms of further deepening our category specialisation. We will now be part of the entire customer Homes journey, no matter what budget, geographical area or aesthetic.”

News Corp Australasia executive chairman Michael Miller said: “These are strong brands with strong teams behind them and we want the best for their future. These titles and their editorial teams are the ideal complement to Bauer’s existing stable of Homes titles and we know that they will have a strong publishing future with Bauer.”

Bauer CEO Paul Dykzeul said, “We are extremely pleased to announce this news as it’s a key milestone in delivering against our core strategic priorities, our strategic business growth and our commitment to invest in deep category specialisation. It is the first acquisition for Bauer in Australia since we bought beautyheaven in 2015, and it signifies our position of leadership as subject matter experts in this category.”


News Brands

Sonia Kruger to face court hearing over controversial Muslim remarks

Sam Ekermawi, the Muslim father who is pursuing the network in the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal over comments made by Today Extra co-host Sonia Kruger, will have his day in court later this month after the tribunal rejected Nine’s application to have the matter dismissed, reports The Australian’s Dana McCauley.

Kruger said in 2016 that she agreed with a proposal to close Australian borders to Muslims to prevent terrorist attacks, while discussing an opinion piece by News Corp columnist Andrew Bolt on the Today show.

[Read the original]

Australian Associated Press plans to make up to 25 staff redundant

Australian Associated Press has announced plans to make up to 25 staff redundant, after a reduction in demand for its wire services, reports The Australian’s Dana McCauley.

Editor-in-chief Tony Gillies said the cuts were necessary as part of “short-term cost control” and aimed to modernise AAP, helping it to retain long-standing customers and find new ones.

Gillies said the national news agency was a mature business operating in a massively disrupted environment.

“We are in a constant state of change because you have to be in order to remain relevant,” he said.

[Read the original]

Diplomatic chill: Australian journalists have been refused visas to China

Australian journalists have been refused visas to China amid an ongoing chill in diplomatic relations between the two countries, reports News Corp’s Claire Bickers.

The reports come as the US Congress prepares to follow the Australian Government’s lead in cracking down on Chinese political interference.

Former NSW Premier Bob Carr, now the head of think tank The Australia-China Relations Institute, confirmed this morning “five or six” Australian journalists scheduled to attend his upcoming trip to China had been refused visas.

After speaking to China’s Ambassador to Australia Cheng Jingye on Thursday night, Carr told ABC radio that the visas were delayed because of “frosty” diplomatic relations between the two countries.

[Read the original]

Change at the top: News Corp appoints new Wall Street Journal editor-in-chief

Matt Murray has been named editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires, succeeding Gerard Baker, who is to take up a new position as the Journal’s editor-at-large, which will include regular writing, hosting the paper’s expanding network of conferences and events, and television presenting. Murray is currently executive editor of the Journal.

(credit: Casimiro PT / Shutterstock)

News Corp has reported that under Baker’s five-and-a-half year tenure, the Journal’s daily circulation has grown by more than a third, led by a rapid digital expansion, and at a time of declining trust in news media the paper has cemented its position as the most trusted newspaper in America. The Journal has consistently led the field with the deepest and most consequential reporting on US and global business, finance and economics news, and it has been the principal contributor to Dow Jones hitting three million memberships this year, creating a firm base for the future of the highest quality journalism. The paper’s technological transformation has resulted in rapid international expansion under Baker’s leadership and its conference network is continuing to grow on a global scale.

Gerard Baker

Robert Thomson, chief executive of News Corp, said: “Gerry has been a very successful editor at a time when journalism has been digitally challenged. I have no doubt that Matt is a worthy successor as editor-in-chief and will be a leader of the highest commitment and integrity. His strong reporting and editing background and his passion for the Journal are obvious to all who have the privilege of working with him.

“In his new role, Gerry, who is a gifted writer and skilful and intelligent interviewer, will continue to make an important contribution to the Journal’s development.”

Baker will write a regular column in Review, the paper’s weekend section, as well as other articles for the paper. In addition, he will host a WSJ-branded news and interview show on Fox Business Network and be a leading voice of the Journal’s rapidly expanding live journalism and events business, conducting interviews with leading figures from business, politics and culture.


ABC names new managers to run four key metropolitan radio stations

The ABC has appointed new managers to run four of its key metropolitan radio stations in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Hobart.

Dina Rosendorff has been appointed Local Manager, ABC Radio Melbourne; Simon Scoble Local Manager, ABC Radio Brisbane; Samantha Stayner Local Manager, ABC Radio Hobart; and Melanie Withnall Local Manager, ABC Radio Sydney.

The vacancies within the ABC’s Capital City network are the result of the March restructure of content teams across television, radio, digital and news platforms.

Head of the ABC’s Capital City Network Warwick Tiernan welcomed the new appointments saying: “All four managers bring a wealth of broadcast experience to their new roles, coming from both inside and outside the ABC.”

ABC Radio Melbourne

Dina Rosendorff has worked across print, radio and television, beginning her journalism career with the Herald Sun newspaper, where she won a Quill Award for Young Journalist of the Year. She then joined ABC News, before spending two years in Boston, MA, working for the NPR affiliate radio station, WBUR. Dina returned to her hometown Melbourne in 2014 to join RN, where she has held roles including RN Drive Executive Producer, Journalism Editor and Arts Editor. Dina takes up her new role at ABC Radio Melbourne next week.

ABC Radio Brisbane

Simon Scoble has more than a decade as an editorial leader at the ABC and before that at the Seven Network. Simon began his media career in commercial radio and then spent six years in television as a News Producer for Seven in Queensland. For the past five and a half years he’s been the Local Manager in Darwin where he has led the team in creating distinct Local content that reflects the character of the city and its people. Simon will join ABC Radio Brisbane in mid-June.

ABC Radio Hobart

Samantha Stayner is a former Content Director at ABC Radio Melbourne, where she led emergency broadcasting during the Black Saturday fires of 2009 and later appeared as the ABC witness at the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission. As a content maker, most recently as senior producer with Rafael Epstein’s Drive program at ABC Radio Melbourne, she has produced and presented outstanding ABC programs from the city to the desert for more than 20 years including in Ballarat and Alice Springs. Sam will join ABC Radio Hobart in early July.

ABC Radio Sydney

Melanie Withnall is currently the Managing Director at Sydney Educational Broadcasting Ltd, which runs 2SER 107.3. She is also the Vice President of the Community Broadcasting Association of Australia. Melanie was part of the team that won Gold and Silver Awards at the New York Radio Festivals in 2017, and is passionate about 2SER’s educational mission to train young journalists. Prior to her current role, Melanie was senior producer of Mornings at ABC Radio Sydney. She has also worked as a Radio lecturer at the AFTRS, and an Executive Producer at 2UE and 2GB. Melanie will join ABC Radio Sydney later in July.

3AW ready to offer former Melbourne ABC announcer a role if he wants it

After speaking recently on air with 3AW’s Neil Mitchell, listeners have been left wondering if Red Symons might be pursuing opportunities there, reports Fairfax Media’s Broede Carmody.

Now 3AW boss Stephen Beers has revealed he has Symons in mind for opportunities at Melbourne’s top-rating station.

“I think Red is good talent,” Beers said. “I’m certainly not looking to Red to replace any of our regular on-air talent. But I think there’s a segment where Red could contribute to the station if he chooses to.”

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Village Cinemas, Hatched Media and Whooshkaa partner on new podcast

Village Cinemas has launched The Cinema Crew, a podcast dedicated to new release movies. Every Wednesday host Kyran Wheatley, along with guests from Village Cinemas, review the latest movies, a day before they hit the big screen.

Kyran Wheatley

In collaboration with end-to-end podcast company, Whooshkaa, Village Cinemas is the first Australian film exhibitor to create and release a podcast of this kind.

Nic Robin, Village Cinemas marketing manager, said the podcast is produced in partnership with Hatched Media.

“Village Cinemas is dedicated to innovating within the entertainment space. The newest application delivered to service an ever evolving audience is a podcast. The Cinema Crew will be the perfect platform for listeners to hear about upcoming movies, insider knowledge and unmissable blockbusters,” Robin said.

“The momentum behind brands jumping into the podcast pool continues to grow across advertising, partnerships and content creation” said Whooshkaa’s content & marketing director Corey Layton. “The Cinema Crew sets the benchmark for what podcasts from brands should be. From the outset Village Cinemas has put the audience first, to create content that’s entertaining, useful and genuine.”

Reminiscing on his first film experience, broadcaster and comedian Kyran Wheatley said, “The first movie I ever saw was Aladdin, which I think is such an incredible film to have lucked into as my first. If only the early to mid-90s had podcasts like The Cinema Crew telling me what to see next, I might not have ever needed to sit through Aladdin: Return of Jafar or Aladdin and the King of Thieves.”

Upcoming film reviews include The Incredibles 2, Jurassic World, Sicario 2, and Antman & The Wasp.


Telstra and hayu team announce billing integration and offer three-month trial

NBCUniversal International’s subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) reality TV service hayu and Telstra have announced the launch of carrier billing integration for the hayu app on Telstra TV.

Kim Kardashian

Telstra TV customers will now have the option to add the streaming service to their Telstra bill. hayu is the third streaming service to offer Telstra customers carrier billing.

In addition to the billing convenience, Telstra TV customers who are new to hayu will also receive a complimentary three-month trial of the service.

Real Housewives of New York season 10

Hendrik McDermott, SVP, branded on-demand entertainment, NBCUniversal International, commented: “Telstra is a world class technology company and we are proud to support its vision for the new Telstra TV. With Telstra’s impressive national footprint, this extended integration has been designed to broaden the distribution and consumption of hayu across Australia.”

Hendrik added this news for Telstra customers has come at an opportune time, with new content dropping on the service. “It’s our subscribers’ enthusiasm that has prompted us to expand our curation beyond NBCU’s pipeline of top-quality day and date content to offer other reality favourites through strategic acquisitions. Over the coming months, hayu subscribers will be treated to several binge-worthy box set drops, including the new additions from this past week Dance Moms and Love & Hip Hop New York.”

ABC America close to announcing a spinoff series featuring Roseanne cast

Less than a week after its stunning decision to cancel Roseanne, ABC America is inching closer to a spinoff of US TV’s No. 1 series.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the network is knee-deep in conversations with executive producers including Tom Werner for a new incarnation of the multicamera comedy. Werner’s Carsey-Werner banner produced the original series and its revived 10th season, with the veteran executive said to be highly engaged in finding a way to continue the franchise with stars Sara Gilbert (who plays Darlene), John Goodman (Dan) and Laurie Metcalf (Jackie). Sources note that it’s likely the entire cast – sans star Roseanne Barr – and creative team, including showrunner Bruce Helford and the same writing staff, and crew would return for whatever the new incarnation is. Multiple ideas are being discussed, including one focused on Darlene, as Gilbert was the driving force behind the ABC revival.

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TV Demand: Netflix animated series manages to make top 10 Digital Originals

No change at the top this week in either Australia or New Zealand on the TV Demand charts as measured by Parrot Analytics.

13 Reasons Why from Netflix again tops the Digital Originals charts in both countries.

Similarly The Walking Dead remains the leader on the Overall TV Shows charts. The Walking Dead has been the leader on that chart for the past 16 weeks!

A new arrival on the Digital Original chart this week is Trollhunters from Netflix. The computer-animated fantasy TV series was made for the streaming service by Guillermo del Toro and DreamWorks. The third season launched on the platform on May 25.

One interesting new arrival on the Overall TV Shows chart in Australia is Roseanne, which sits at #4 after the series was cancelled by ABC America last week.

Social Content Ratings: Nine News and Dreamtime at the G lead charts

Nine News really has a grip on the social content ratings with over a quarter of a million interactions this week as measured by Nielsen in the non-sport category.

MasterChef Australia is next best on that chart.

Meanwhile in sport, the AFL match last Saturday night between Essendon and Richmond, billed as Dreamtime at the G and screened on 7mate and Fox Footy, ranks #1. The FIFA World Cup warm-up match between Australia and Czech Republic ranks #2.

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