The Australian TV and digital media rights for the Rugby World Cup have finally been sold.
But did holding out until just six months before the tournament save the broadcasters money?
They had to gamble that nobody else in Australia would be interested in the rights – a gamble that proved worth taking.
The rights to the Japan tournament were acquired by ITV back in 2017. A year later TVNZ and Spark acquired the right for New Zealand.
Finally on the weekend it was revealed Fox Sports and Network 10 will show the matches in Australia.
These highlights from statements from the broadcasters:
Foxtel’s Fox Sports has secured the streaming and broadcast rights to the Rugby World Cup 2019. All matches of the tournament will be made available live and ad-break free during play on a dedicated channel and, for the first time, live in 4K Ultra HD, exclusive for Foxtel sports subscribers.
The biggest sporting event of 2019, the Rugby World Cup 2019 will be held in Japan from September 20 to November 2 meaning that matches are scheduled in prime viewing times for Australian audiences.
Fox Sports will live stream and broadcast all 48 matches of the tournament to Foxtel subscribers. This will include all of the Wallabies’ pool matches, all four Quarter Finals, both Semi-Finals, the Bronze Final for 3rd place and the Final.
Kayo Sports will also stream Fox Sports’ live coverage to its subscribers and all matches will be available to stream on-demand.
Fox Sports’ coverage will be broadcast on a dedicated Rugby World Cup channel, which will include match previews, daily highlights, review programs, archive matches from previous Rugby World Cup tournaments and analysis from the best commentators in the business.
Head of Fox Sports Peter Campbell said: “The Rugby World Cup 2019 is the biggest sports event this year and the only place to see all 48 games live and ad-break free during play is on Fox Sports.
“The rights we have acquired will also allow all matches in the tournament to be streamed on the new sports only service Kayo Sports, as well as Foxtel Now. Eligible Foxtel customers can also stream the Rugby World Cup 2019, where and when they want, with Foxtel’s mobile app, Foxtel GO, which is available at no additional charge with a Foxtel subscription.”
Fox Sports’ app and website, www.foxsports.com.au will also provide additional coverage of the Rugby World Cup 2019 with live match centres and video to ensure a one stop destination for rugby fans.
Network 10 will be the free-to-air home of the 2019 Rugby World Cup after securing broadcast and digital rights, including live streaming and catch-up, to the biggest games of the tournament.
As part of the agreement, Australians can enjoy 10 of the very best games from the Rugby World Cup live and free on Network 10 and 10 Play, including every Wallabies game, right up to and including the final.
Network 10’s chief executive officer Paul Anderson said: “The 2019 Rugby World Cup is one of the biggest international sporting events of the year and the crown jewel in the rugby calendar. As the long-time home of Australian rugby, we’re super excited that we can continue to bring coverage of this great game to Australians live and free, wherever and however they choose to watch it.”
Network 10’s head of sport Matt White said: “It’s fantastic for the game and for fans to see the Rugby World Cup expand into a new emerging market like Japan. And for Australian fans, the great thing is that matches will be played in a country with a similar time-zone. The tournament fits perfectly into our schedule, complementing other major sporting events in our calendar. We can’t wait to bring the best games of the tournament to Australians across all of our platforms.”
The 2019 Rugby World Cup joins other major sporting events on 10 in 2019 including the Supercars Championship, the MotoGP, the Australian Formula 1, The Rugby Championship, the Bledisloe Cup and the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Anderson continued: “In the lead-up to summer, 10 will be the home of event television. We’ll have a full schedule of sport – live and free – with the Rugby World Cup, our Supercars coverage in Bathurst, the Gold Coast, Sandown and Newcastle, the Australian MotoGP, and the four events across the Melbourne Cup Carnival – Derby Day, Melbourne Cup Day, Oaks Day and Stakes Day. This gives us a fantastic head start to launch our summer programming strategy to millions of Australians, setting us up well for 2020.”
• Fox Sports, Kayo get every match, 10 has 10 games for FTA & 10 Play
By James Manning
At a season launch last week, Nine’s 2019 NRL event showcased the action, innovation and content that will make this year’s NRL season the biggest yet, according to the network.
Wide World of Sports presenter Erin Molan hosted a lunch with over a hundred clients, partners and guests. Tom Malone, Nine’s director of sport, spoke about how the new NRL on Nine will take viewers closer to the action than ever before in 2019, with more live NRL programming across Nine and 9Now and expert analysis and opinions from the top commentary lineup in Australian sport.
Wide World of Sports presenter James Bracey hosted a Q&A with new Wide World of Sports commentators – former superstar players Billy Slater, Johnathan Thurston, Sam Thaiday and commentator Paul Gallen.
On International Women’s Day, NAB announced it had extended its support of the NAB AFL Women’s competition until 2022.
NAB has partnered with the AFL for the past 18 years, including being the naming rights partner of the NAB AFL Women’s competition since the inaugural season in 2017.
NAB supports of all levels of the game from NAB AFL Auskick, to the NAB AFL Rising Star Program. There was a record level of participation in 2018 with more than 1.64 million people, including over 200,000 Auskickers, playing at their local footy ovals in communities across Australia.
AFL general manager commercial Kylie Rogers said the league was delighted to have NAB continue their support of AFLW.
“We enjoy a genuine partnership with NAB, who have supported the AFL in bringing the NAB AFL Women’s competition to life since its inaugural season in 2017, and we’re so pleased they will continue with us for another three years” Rogers said.
In a major signing, NRL Nation has secured the services of Greg “Brandy” Alexander for 2019, who is revered as the best analyst in the game. The former Penrith Panthers star brings with him an astute footballing knowledge and professionalism garnered from an extensive playing and broadcasting career.
Spearheading the NRL Nation team again in 2019 is one of the game’s best callers, Brenton Speed. He’ll join experts such as former origin coach Laurie Daley, former Queensland star Gary Belcher and one time Penrith premiership hero Scott Sattler at the microphone.
Sattler said he was thrilled about returning to the NRL Nation commentary team in 2019.
“We were blown away by the positive feedback we got from listeners last season. It is great that we can reach so many rugby league fans through NRL Nation, especially in regional areas. I can’t wait for Round 1 to kick off so we can do it all again,” Sattler said.
Also returning to NRL Nation in 2019 is iconic rugby league figure, Steve Roach and former Clive Churchill Medalist, Brett Kimmorley who are among the Red Energy experts for 2019.
Rounding out this season’s NRL Nation team is a host of expert commentators and decorated ex-players including Scott Prince, Terry Campese, Renee Gartner, Brent Tate, Jimmy Smith, Emma Lawrence, Peter Psaltis, Joel Caine and Shaun Timmins.
Executive producer, NRL Nation, Jeremy Markham, said the broadcast team would deliver unparralled coverage of rugby league across Australia.
“It is a first class commentary team, loaded with the best play-by-play callers and experts in the business. Covering four games every round and 108 games across the home and away season as well as 3 State of Origin matches and all of the NRL Finals action means NRL Nation is at the forefront of NRL radio coverage,” Markham said.
In 2019, NRL Nation will be available on 160 radio frequencies across the NRL heartland, streamed through NRLNation.com.au as well as via the NRL.com website and the Official NRL App.
Foxtel, has announced that Wests Tigers premiership winner Benji Marshall will join the network in 2019.
Marshall will join Foxtel’s only dedicated Rugby League channel, Fox League, to be part of the week’s line-up of entertainment and live NRL broadcasts.
Marshall will join Ben Ikin and Paul Kent on NRL 360 every Tuesday night throughout 2019 for Players Night. Marshall will be seen during the year on Fox League’s pre and post-game coverage.
Marshall said he can’t wait to join Fox League: “I’m really excited to be joining the Fox League team in 2019 and can’t wait to saddle up beside some of the best commentators and analysts in the business.
“NRL 360 hosts Ben Ikin and Paul Kent have been known to grill players on Players Nights about anything and everything so I’m going to be on my toes that’s for sure.”
Fox League head of television Steve Crawley said: “When we saw that Benji had named his baby son Fox we guessed he was thinking about coming back.
“At Fox League we love Benji. He’s a natural talent and always has something interesting to add, whether it’s on the field or in the studio.
“Unlike most current players he doesn’t mind putting on record what he really thinks and that makes for great TV.”
Foxtel’s Fox Sports has acquired the rights to the VIVO 2019 Indian Premier League, the world’s leading T20 cricket tournament, with live coverage of the tournament to be broadcast across Fox Sports and Fox cricket.
The IPL will be staged over a six week period from March 23 with up to 60 matches scheduled to be played.
The tournament features some of the world’s best T20 players with a number of Australian players securing contracts including former Test captain Steve Smith (Rajasthan Royals) and ex-vice-captain David Warner (Sunrisers Hyderabad).
Chris Lynn (Kolkata Knight Riders), Andrew Tye (Kings XI Punjab), Marcus Stoinis (Royal Challengers Bangalore), Ben Cutting (Mumbai Indians), Jason Behrendorff (Mumbai Indians), Nathan Coulter-Nile (Royal Challengers Bangalore), Billy Stanlake (Sunrisers Hyderabad) and Shane Watson (Chennai Superkings) were also retained by their teams, while Moises Henriques (Kings XI Punjab) and Ashton Turner (Rajasthan Royals) were recently picked up in the IPL auction.
The full schedule for the VIVO IPL 2019 is yet to be confirmed, subject to the announcement and impact of the Lok Sabha 2019 election dates in India.
Another cracking ratings week for Nine as it extends its winning streak to eight, which of course includes the first four weeks of 2019 survey.
On all of those eight weeks Nine’s combined channel share has been over 30%. Nine’s winning primary share for all of those eight weeks has always averaged over 22% for the week.
Married At First Sight was again Nine’s most-watched show with a metro audience of 1.451m for the Sunday episode a week ago. Nine is also claiming key demo wins for primary and combined channel share.
In terms of BVOD rankings, MAFS is dominating the OzTAM VPM rankings, taking out 16 of the top 20 spots. The first dinner party episode continues to be the top MAFS episode on BVOD with a VPM of 462,000+.
Another good news story last week was Travel Guides and its Indian episode, which posted a season high audience of 758,000.
Seven’s primary share was under 20% for a second consecutive week while its combined channels share has not dropped below 28% in survey. Not a terrible result given some people think Seven is being soundly beaten with no hit shows.
Seven looks good on any night without MAFS! It won those three nights last week – Thursday, Friday and Saturday. However the launch of NRL from Thursday March 14 may push that into the Nine column too. Seven only has to wait a week though for the start of AFL on Thursday March 21.
Seven News remains the channel’s sole primetime regular winner. During the day its champs include Sunrise and The Chase.
10 managed to record its first primary survey week in double figures – only just with 10.2% – after something of a horror start to survey.
Gogglebox is the primary channel’s strongest performer and was top 10 for the week under 50 and all key demos.
10 Play managed to record its biggest week of the year with 1.08m unique visitors.
Having the Michael Jackson doco Neverland on Friday and Saturday was a good choice with both nights posting their first double figure shares this year.
• Singles: Jonas Brothers are sole new entry near top of the chart
• Albums: 10 albums new to top 50, Hozier crack the top 10
By James Manning
After 22 weeks on the chart, Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper are enjoying another week at the top as Shallow makes it five weeks on top in total for the multi-award winning tune from A Star Is Born.
The Jonas Brothers have made their first chart appearance together since 2008 with their reunion single Sucker. The song is their first single since 2013 and it becomes their first top 10 hit on the ARIA chart.
There was only one other new entry into the top 50 this week – I Can’t Get Enough from talented US producer Tainy who worked on this with Benny Blanco, Selena Gomez and J Balvin. The single debuts at #44.
Some noteworthy moves in the top 10 in what was a busy week with 10 albums making their way into the top 50.
The movement in the top 10 saw one chart debut and upward moves from three former #1 albums. One of those was Arianna Grande moving back to #1 for what is her third week as a chart topper with Thank U, Next. Also sliding back into the top 10 are two former chart toppers – Divide from Ed Sheeran lifts from #12 to #9 in week 105, while Post Malone’s Beerbongs & Bentleys moves from #13 to #10 in week 45.
The new entry in the top 10 was Hozier (pictured) with Wasteland, Baby! at #8.
This is the Irish singer-songwriter’s second album after his first peaked at #3 in April 2015.
The nine other albums into the chart this week are:
#15 Tasmania from Pond. Eighth album from the Perth band and the fourth to chart in the top 50. Landing at #15 equals their previous best ARIA chart peak.
#17 When I Get Home from Solange. This is also a new ARIA chart peak for her fourth album.
#18 What A Time To Be Alive from Tom Walker. Debut album for the Scottish singer/songwriter.
#20 Shelby from Lil Skies. Second album from the US rapper and the first to crack the ARIA top 50.
#21 Shine A Light from Bryan Adams. Perhaps a slightly disappointing debut for the rock legend’s 14th album. The title track was co-written with Ed Sheeran.
#34 The Fat Of The Land, chart re-entry for The Prodigy following the death of singer Keith Flint last week.
#35 Shadowboxer from Mansionair. At last – the first album from the popular Sydney band hits the chart as they tour through Utah, Colorado and Texas this week before playing Coachella in mid-April. The band’s Aussie fans have to wait until late May to see them at home in NSW with a Sydney show on Saturday June 1.
#48 I, The Mask from In Flames. The 13th album from the Swedish masters of melodic death metal.
BioWare’s long-awaited but divisive Anthem has clung onto top spot in the Australian games charts for another week.
By Luke Reilly, games editor, IGN Australia
You may have spotted stories originating in the UK that Anthem only shifted half the physical copies of Mass Effect Andromeda, BioWare’s previous game. Absolute like-for-like comparisons are difficult to draw because of the industry’s continuing shift to digital downloads (Anthem did top the digital sales charts in Australia, just ahead of Grand Theft Auto V and Ubisoft’s newest instalment of its cult fave motorcycle series, Trials Rising). However, combined with news of PS4 players encountering a problem in Anthem that causes their consoles to completely and unexpectedly shut down while trying to play or close the game (and other reports that EA has banned players for exploiting a victimless glitch) it’s been a less-than-ideal start for Anthem.
The LEGO Movie 2 Videogame has entered at fourth, which seems decent considering the film hasn’t officially opened in Australia yet. Folks have been able to catch “advance screenings” of The LEGO Movie 2 down under, but the official release date for the film is March 21 (over 40 days after the US release date: February 8). Hey, remember when Village Roadshow boss Graham Burke admitted that delaying the first LEGO Movie in Australia was “one hell of a mistake” and that holding The LEGO Movie back 54 days after it came out in the United States resulted in rampant piracy? Remember when he also said that, going forward, all the distributor’s movies will be released within the time and date of the US? It seems Village Roadshow doesn’t, but we do.
The final new entry is Codemasters’ Dirt Rally 2.0, the top-notch follow-up to the studio’s Dirt series spin-off for stern and serious rally junkies. Dirt Rally 2.0 is a challenging rally simulator and the best hardcore rally game on the market right now. It also features Australia and New Zealand rally stages, which certainly could be helping its case locally.
• Sunday night MAFS commitment episode starts keep Nine #1
• My Kitchen Rules cooks in the great outdoors again
• Less Australians want Takeaway, Sunday audience on 250,000
• Seven News 875,000
• Nine News 807,000
• ABC News 640,000
• Insiders 299,000
• The Project 173,000/278,000
• 10 News First 207,000
• Offsiders 139,000
• SBS World News 148,000
• Sunrise 238,000
• Today 169,000
The 6pm News numbers were down week-on-week from 935,000 to 875,000.
My Kitchen Rules was on location again with group two tasked with providing a sophisticated seafood meal for some hungry sailors. The series started its new week on 732,000 after 716,000 a week ago.
Sunday Night then interviewed Octomum Natalie Suleman as the children celebrate their 10th birthday. There was also a look at John Bigatton’s role in the Bitcoin scandal and mystery around his wife’s disappearance. The show’s audience was down from 504,000 a week ago to 429,000 last night.
A shock announcement was promised from Jessika who is one of several Married At First Sight stars this year delivering the goods regularly for Nine and Endemol Shine. Heidi and Mike were in the spotlight early with some doubt as to whether Mike might opt to depart – he didn’t though as they both voted to stay. The Sunday night episode was on 1.281m after 1.451m a week ago. The Sunday night commitments have been the top show of the week for three consecutive weeks. MAFS has been the #1 series for six of its seven weeks on air, only being outrated by the Australian Open Men’s Final in its launch week.
60 Minutes had a quieter evening with 705,000 after 815,000 a week ago. The feature interview was Liz Hayes with Pauline Hanson and Mark Latham who seemed to be in election mode.
After improved Friday and Saturday shares, 10 has recorded its lowest Sunday share of the year as its Sunday Night Takeaway programming experiment dipped for a second successive week. After three episodes the audience sits at 259,000. US soap star Ron Moss was the guest announcer and one segment featured a hilarious Steve Price stitch-up.
Earlier on the channel Ricki Lee was a guest on The Project, which started on 173,000 and grew to 278,000.
Later in the night Hughesy, We Have A Problem featured another network appearance from Grant Denyer with 222,000, down from 249,000 last week. The show is linked to the fortunes of its lead-in.
The second episode of The Crown And Us: The Story Of The Royals In Australia seemed to be padding out its final minutes, repeating much of hat had gone before in the program. After a debut on 540,000, week two did 438,000.
A rare new episode (one of four only from last year) of Vera then did 605,000 after 667,000 a week ago. The show was a clear favourite after 60 Minutes drew to a close.
The second episode of London’s Super Tunnel was on 204,000 after 229,000 a week before. It was the third-most-watched show on SBS in week 10.
The 8.30pm feature doco Jane Goodall: My Life With Chimpanzees then did 105,000.
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||4.1%||7TWO||2.6%||GO!||2.6%||10 Bold||4.1%||VICELAND||1.5%|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||3.4%||GEM||3.3%||10 Peach||2.9%||Food Net||0.9%|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||3.1%||7TWO||4.3%||GO!||6.3%||10 Bold||1.7%||VICELAND||1.4%|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||2.5%||GEM||3.1%||10 Peach||2.9%||Food Net||1.1%|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.8%||7TWO||2.5%||GO!||4.3%||10 Bold||2.3%||VICELAND||0.9%|
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||3.9%||GEM||2.7%||10 Peach||2.3%||Food Net||1.1%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||10 Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.7%||7TWO||2.9%||GO!||4.7%||WIN Bold||1.7%||VICELAND||1.0%|
|ABC ME||0.8%||7mate||3.8%||GEM||4.9%||WIN Peach||1.7%||Food Net||1.0%|
|ABC NEWS||1.6%||7flix||2.7%||9Life||2.2%||Sky News on WIN||0.4%||NITV||0.0%|
|SUNDAY METRO ALL TV|
Friday Top 10
Saturday Top 10
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
Anchorage Capital Partners, Allegro Funds and Antony Catalano have lobbed separate indicative bids for Nine’s regional newspaper business, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.
Sources close to the process said Nine, which inherited Australian Community Media via its $4 billion merger with Fairfax Media, was going through the bids and has not yet contacted the interested parties to open up the next stage and hand out more detailed information.
Non-binding indicative bids were due last Wednesday, although sources said Anchorage tabled its offer on Thursday. The sale is being run by Macquarie Capital.
News Corp Australia will unveil new ways to connect brands with more Australians in the moments that matter at this year’s Come Together event, launching in Sydney on March 19.
Come Together is News Corp’s annual showcase of its capabilities, products, services and innovative client solutions to industry.
Hosted by executive chairman Michael Miller and chief operating officer, publishing, Damian Eales, the six-day Come Together spectacle is expected to attract more than 1000 senior advertising, marketing and media executives in Sydney and Melbourne. The event involves three unique sessions a day, over three days, in each city.
Miller said: “Come Together will take our clients, partners, media buyers and creative agencies on a journey of discovery, sharing News Corp Australia’s innovation story and demonstrating how it will help them maximise results.
“With the increasing fragmentation of advertising and marketing options available in market, clients want a trusted, full-service partner to solve their marketing challenges with integrated and creative solutions that balance sales activations and brand building for long-term growth.
“At Come Together, clients will see just how we deliver to that brief, how we connect with 16 million Australians across 1600 audience segments, to engage one-to-one.”
Eales said: “Every client we talk to is laser-focussed on their customer journeys and experiences. They’re continuously searching for creative and innovative ways to connect with niche audiences at scale.
“We have the know-how and the capability to change brand perception, strengthen brand engagement and convert consideration to purchase.
“Clients will be surprised and inspired when they join the journey at Come Together 2019.”
Brand and quality content are key pillars for media businesses dealing with the massive wave of digital disruption which has engulfed the sector globally, according to BBC Studios chief executive Tim Davie, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.
Speaking at The Australian Financial Review Business Summit CEO dinner last week, Davie said the media market is great for consumers who are benefiting from the smashing of traditional fixed content distribution models.
“You’ve got to double down on what means something, and brand means something. You have to bring substance to that, but the BBC stands very simply stands for quality and trust, underpinned by British IP, that’s it,” he said.
Davie heads BBC Studios following its merger with BBC Worldwide last year.
BBC Studios is now a £1.5 billion revenue business with four wholly-owned production departments, two international production partnerships and 16 investments in independent production companies.
The Australian has published an edited version of News Corp CEO Robert Thomson’s speech Big Digital: After the Awakening, the Reckoning at the Media and Telecoms 2019 & Beyond conference in London last week:
Here we are in the midst of an e-evolution, looking for a moral and intellectual GPS at a time when our phone is supposed to measure heartbeat, steps walked, stairs climbed, hours slept but gives no true sense of perspective or place.
A few facts about the media – more than 1800 US newspapers have closed in the past 15 years – an industry that employed 412,000 people in 2001 had declined to 166,000 in 2017. And have the digital natives succeeded where the traditional titles have failed? Err, no; in recent weeks BuzzFeed, Vice and the Verizon digital properties and others laid off more than 2100 people.
The creators are still being slain by the distributors, who are publishers, though they find it hard to pronounce the word. If you are intervening to filter out offensive material you’re editing, and if you are editing you should aspire to be a great editor, not selective and reactive, but proactive. Haphazard curating is not a curative.
Siobhan McKenna is group head of broadcasting at News Corp, but with the ear of Lachlan Murdoch she is widely considered the most powerful individual at the historic media company in Australia, report The Sydney Morning Herald’s John McDuling and Jennifer Duke.
It is well known that her influence out-ranks that of Michael Miller, the News Corp Australia executive chairman. Her fingerprints are all over the major strategic decisions that have shaped News’ current direction. Occasionally, she is even said to bypass News Corp CEO Robert Thomson on important matters.
All of which means the well-spoken and impeccably-dressed McKenna is, with the possible exception of newly installed ABC chair Ita Buttrose, the most powerful woman in the notoriously male-dominated Australian media landscape.
Stephen Conroy, the former communications minister, developed a friendship with McKenna when she was NBN chairman.
“She is just seriously, genuinely smart,” he says. “Incredibly hard working and diligent.”
This is a widely-held view by those who currently work closely with her, including Cathy O’Connor, the boss of Lachlan Murdoch-owned Nova (“When you have got a high stakes situation on your hands … she is really quick, really calm and very clear-headed”) and Paul Whittaker, who has spent more than three decades at News Corp and was recently appointed chief executive of Sky News Australia (“a strong [and] effective” leader).
For those who value freedom of speech, it is time corporate Australia stood up to anonymous social media activists and their bullying campaigns, writes News Corp Australia executive chairman Michael Miller in The Australian.
These digital trolls are increasingly wanting to shut down legitimate public debate and discussion because they hate views alternative to their own being expressed.
In the process, they want to destroy good Australian businesses unless they buckle to their threats of boycotts either from advertisers or from consumers.
Sleeping Giants Oz is intimidating many of Australia’s most respected businesses to pull their advertising from Sky News. Their threat is that if you don’t withdraw your ads, your reputation will be dragged through the mud. It’s a tactic also aimed at influencing advertising agencies and media buyers to stop recommending Sky News to clients as part of their ad spend.
Media planning driven by small and anonymous social media samples is neither smart nor strategic, nor the approach of a successful company.
Sky News has launched a new short-form political series Power Plays with David Speers that examines some of the most significant moments, scandals and crises in Australian political history.
From security scandals, affairs of the heart to attempted assassinations, the 10-episode short-form series looks through the political archives to recount the events, speak to insiders and witnesses to examine how they have shaped Australia’s political history.
Hosted by award-winning Sky News political editor David Speers, Power Plays will cover key events from Federation in 1901 and the first sitting of the Australian Parliament, to the 21st century and the rise and fall of many of the nation’s leaders.
A new episode airs at 7.45am AEDT and 6.45pm AEDT each Sunday on Sky News Live, with rare vision and facts including interviews with key players, eye witnesses and political experts.
David Speers said: “The way our current crop of politicians churn through leaders and up-end policies, it’s easy to think we’re living in a period of unprecedented upheaval.
“This look back at Australia’s rich political history is a powerful reminder our nation is no stranger to turmoil, scandal and genuine constitutional crisis. The encouraging thing is our robust democracy has survived it all and thrives to this day. It’s important to understand Australia’s political history to put the current situation in context.”
The first episode in the series was It’s Time, which examined the events surrounding Gough Whitlam’s election win in 1972 when Labor took leadership of the country after 23 years of a conservative government.
Other episodes in the series will look at events surrounding the sacking of the Whitlam Government and the beginning of the Fraser Era, attempted and successful assassination attempts in Australia, the scandals and love affairs that rocked Parliament and the security scares of the 1950s.
The week Les Carlyon left us feels like an apt moment to ponder the determinedly self-glorifying contribution to Australiana of the genre’s great imposter Peter FitzSimons, author (who needs genius when you’ve got undergraduate researchers?!) of bestsellers The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Gallipoli and D-Day for Dummies.
FitzSimons’ latest (unpaid) cause is fomenting antipathy to the Berejiklian government’s current demolition and planned rebuild of the Sydney Football Stadium adjacent the Sydney Cricket Ground at Moore Park. Having airily commenced his crusade in November 2017 (as ever, drowning in his oppressively generous garnish of self-reference), positive reinforcement from his fans immediately obliged him to seize the groaning burden of its political leadership.
Fran Lebowitz remarked in 2016 that Donald Trump is “a poor person’s idea of a rich person”. In this spirit, Fitzy is a stupid person’s idea of a smart person. As in, he’d be absolutely perfect in The Sunday Telegraph.
If our sibling masthead is serious about reversing the editorial dumb-down its veering advertising model necessitated several years ago, it might reconsider offering Sydney’s high spenders a mercantile mouth-breather in a party costume. “He’s the only reason to buy The Sun-Herald,” his defenders hold. He’s also the reason many refuse to. His predecessor on its back page? The mellifluous and canny Annabel Crabb.
With newspapers and digital publishers globally downsizing staff, The Washington Post’s move to hire 11 new technology journalists has grabbed attention, reports The Australian’s Chris Griffith.
But the Post’s business editor David Cho said it was the obvious thing to do.
“It’s a pure journalistic expansion that makes sense,” Cho told The Australian. “There’s enormous interest in the topic and these companies have enormous influence over people’s lives.”
The expansion takes the Post’s technology reporting staffing from 14 to 25.
Entries open today for the 31st annual Australian Commercial Radio Awards (ACRAs) to be held in Brisbane at the Royal International Convention Centre on October 19 after last visiting the city in 2013.
Last year’s ACRA’s Best On-Air Team (Metro AM), was won by the 2GB’s Continuous Call Team (Ray Hadley, Bob Fulton, Darryl Brohman, Erin Molan, Mark Riddell, Chris Warren & Mark Levy) and KIIS 1065’s The Kyle and Jackie O Show, won the Best On-Air Team (Metro FM) category.
Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia Joan Warner said: “This year’s ACRAs is set to be an exciting night celebrating radio talent from across Australia both on and off air.”
Organised by Commercial Radio Australia, on behalf of the radio industry, the national Awards include 39 categories, which cover all areas of radio broadcasting including news, talk, sport, music and entertainment.
The ACRAs judging is a two level peer judging process. Firstly, state-based peer judging is undertaken by a panel in each state comprised of senior radio industry members across networks to determine finalists, with the second stage of judging taking place at national level to determine the winners. In addition, around half of the award categories are judged by specialist judging panels. For example categories such as best marketing campaign, best ad, best sales achievement, best music director are judged by the specialist panels. Winners are announced in each category across three areas: metropolitan, provincial and country commercial radio stations.
Entries for this year’s Awards close on 17 May 2019.
Broadcast king Alan Jones could walk away from his top-rating breakfast program from Wednesday with contract talks appearing stalled over his future, reports News Corp’s Anna Caldwell.
Jones has been approached and has had conversations with several entities, including Sky News, about possible career options if the radio king decides not to continue with 2GB.
He already has a weekly show on Sky.
The Saturday Telegraph understands that legal clauses in Jones’ contract meant that his employer, Macquarie Media, had one month to respond to an expression of interest from Jones to continue negotiations.
That time frame ends on Wednesday, after which Jones is considered a free agent.
Alan Jones, Ray Hadley and Neil Mitchell have populist views that align with the Murdoch tabloids such as the Herald Sun and Daily Telegraph. But what if Australia’s most influential talkback hosts were actually employed by News Corp? asks The Sydney Morning Herald’s John McDuling.
It’s a left-field idea worth thinking through as dealmaking in the radio sector heats up.
The idea of a straight asset swap, in which Lachlan Murdoch’s Illyria personal holding company would transfer its interests in the Nova FM radio stations to Nine, in exchange for Nine’s ownership of AM radio stations such as Jones and Hadley’s 2GB in Sydney and Mitchell’s 3AW in Melbourne, is being openly talked about in media industry circles.
Another question worth asking: would News Corp co-chairman Lachlan Murdoch (and his top lieutenant Siobhan McKenna) be willing to sell the asset which has been his greatest corporate triumph? That one that is harder to answer, but everyone has their price.
Through his Illyria investment vehicle, Lachlan owns Adelaide radio station Fiveaa. Adelaide is the only major city where Macquarie Media has no presence so uniting these stations could have benefits.
The Australian’s Nick Tabakoff reports Andrew Bolt, whose on-air partnership with Steve Price has turned Macquarie’s evening show into an east coast ratings machine, has ended his nine-year stint.
Two months of back-and-forth negotiations between Bolt and Macquarie’s bosses finally broke down 11 days ago.
Bolt has told The Australian: “We agreed to disagree. We couldn’t agree to money, hours and duties. But I want to stress: we parted on good terms.”
Bolt’s departure will also end his weekly segments with Ben Fordham and Chris Smith on 2GB. But his Herald Sun and Sky News gigs will continue unchanged.
Fellow Herald Sun columnist Rita Panahi stood in for Bolt during the negotiations, and will now be Price’s new partner-in-crime.
The Sunday Herald Sun’s new gaming columnist Stephanie Bendixsen has been announced as the host of a new show dedicated to Game Of Thrones fans, reports News Corp’s Lexie Cartwright.
The 33-year-old will join veteran James Mathison, who is making his TV comeback after four years, on Foxtel’s new show Thrones 360, a premium one hour series that recaps, reflects and rejoices in each episode of GoT.
It’s safe to say Bendixsen, a respected pop culture figure in Australia, is well and truly counting down to the eighth and final season of the HBO fantasy juggernaut, which will stream express from the US on Monday, April 15 at 11am AEDT on Foxtel.
Thrones 360 will air on Mondays, beginning from March 18 at 7.30pm on Fox8, and 9.30pm on Fox Showcase, and will recap every detail from the first seven seasons, featuring appearances from celebrity guests and News Corp journalists.
The show will then air live from Monday, April 15 at 9.30pm on Fox Showcase, immediately after each new episode of GoT, to dissect the latest events.
A tropical storm is brewing, promising to leave a trail of destruction in its wake when Bachelor In Paradise returns to Network 10.
Without revealing the exact starting date, 10 has announced the following details for the 2019 season:
Reuniting for the first time since their “brutal” separation are The Bachelor Australia’s season four controversial sweethearts, Richie and Alex (pictured).
Their anticipated reunion sparks a major showdown between the former flames, reigniting past tensions. Will the “grubby details” surrounding their split ruin their chances of finding love again?
But the drama doesn’t stop there.
Also donning a sarong and sipping on a Pina Colada will be outspoken bachelorettes Cat and Alisha, fresh from their stint on the Nick Cummins season of The Bachelor.
Hoping this will this be their chance at redemption and finding love, the two plan to show another side of themselves. But will their sharp claws come out again?
And if that isn’t enough to have you purchasing your first class ticket to Fiji, then Brooke’s shocking secret bombshell will.
Brace yourselves Australia, this is going to be a turbulent ride.
TV Presenter Natalie Barr discusses her career and the men who have influenced her, by Paul Ewart in Sunday Life.
Tess Haubrich has graduated from modelling to build a fine body of acting work in film and television – and now she’s added single motherhood to the mix, reports Erin O’Dwyer in Sunday Life.