Thursday March 21, 2019

Mediaweek TV

This week on Mediaweek TV James Manning speaks withNews Corp’s Australia COO publishing Damian Eales. Tune in to Mediaweek TV at 2.30pm on Your Money (Foxtel 601 and 95 FTA).

This week News Corp Australia started its annual showcase events Come Together. This year the publishing group has revealed 24 initiatives for advertisers to make better use of the large audiences the company reaches daily and weekly. The event took clients on a journey through five categories from Food, sport and travel to prestige and local community. James Manning spoke with News Corp’s Australia COO publishing Damian Eales at one of the Sydney events this week.

Podcast Week

• The Alternative Truth, News Corp’s NewsCast, AFL

By James Manning

Searching for The Alternative Truth

 Dr Mei Ling Doery always knew as a doctor that she preferred healthy people to sick ones. Her impressive background and medical experience is now being leveraged by PodcastOne in the series The Alternative Truth.

Doery is a research qualified medical doctor with a Bachelor of Medicine & Surgery, Bachelor of Medical Science, and Masters of Public Health from the University of Melbourne. She sat on the board of VicHealth from 2006 to 2011.

She explains on her website: “I have dedicated my life to studying the human condition. I am driven by the pursuit of understanding what makes us tick and the constant quest to align capital (human and financial) with long-term human empowerment. This drive has powered me to speak around the world – from Melbourne to London, Sydney to Seoul, Shanghai to Los Angeles and back again.”

Episodes of The Alternative Truth offer listeners a mountain of information from a wide range of specialists, with Doery handling the interviews.

“I still have a lot to learn too,” she told Mediaweek. “I have spent 20 years in medicine and I grew up in a medical family – my dad is a professor of clinical medicine and my mum is an intensive care nurse.

The aim of the podcast is to bring in people who have opposing views on the same issue. We usually try and have a traditional expert and then a new pioneer.

“My broad interest is how can we usher in the future of health. The thing that exploded my brain was how on one hand we have the traditional medical system full of rigour, science, clever and good intentions. On the other hand we have a burgeoning field of alternative health where people are migrating en masse because they don’t feel heard or met by the old system.

“The things that ail us now are not necessarily the things the old system is designed to address.

The intention behind the podcast is to try and have an empowering conversation. Not for me to tell you what I think, but to bring people in who have specific expertise and who approach problems from different angles and who can explore that tension.

“If you’ve actually had cancer you will find that the hospital is not going to meet all your needs. Equally if you have ever been an insomniac, or overweight or have a skin problem, sometimes a naturopath can’t get you there.

I’d like to equip people with information straight from the horse’s mouth so they can make better choices.

“That is a journey I have been on. I want people to be more in charge of their health. I think we should be reappropriating doctors for a much more inspired purpose rather than digging trenches for chronically ill people.”

One of the podcasts sees Doery interview an organic beauty pioneer who makes all her products out of plant-based materials. There was also an interview with a dermatologist on the same episode. “Both of them blew the mainstream beauty industry out of the water and said people are wasting their money.”

PodcastOne has so far published five episodes, with Doery telling Mediaweek there is plenty more to come. “The aim is to release a new episode nearly every fortnight.”

Future episodes will investigate buying organic and asking does energy healing actually work?

Listen to The Alternative Truth here.

NewsCast: News Corp reveals its podcast plans

This week News Corp Australia revealed a portfolio of podcast series called NewsCast, each with commercial partnership opportunities.

While NewsCast has announced 20 new consumers podcasts, News Corp Australia executive chairman Michael Miller told Mediaweek its content agency Suddenly has had over 100 commercial podcasts.

“Our podcasting expertise is not just The Teacher’s Pet. It started a few years ago with Bowraville, we also had My Father The Murderer and now we have Who The Hell Is Hamish?

“Australians are great consumers of podcasts and there are different models that will evolve. The international reputation of Australia is that commercially we are behind in how we leverage podcasts to advertisers.”

Miller indicated that News Corp will continue to publish sponsored podcasts that are free to consumers, some will be freemium and some will be available under a subscription model.

News Corp’s SuperFooty amongst best of AFL audio

As the 2019 AFL season begins this week, there are plenty of AFL podcasts amongst the iTunes list of the most popular sports podcasts.

Topping the charts this week is the new-look AFL podcast Superfooty from News Corp Australia.

The podcasted is hosted by Herald Sun reporter Lauren Wood who is joined by Herald Sun chief football writer Mark Robinson and columnist Jon Anderson plus the podcast’s big off-season recruit Brian “BT” Taylor.

Other AFL audio making a mark includes Hump Day with Scotty and Swanny, which teams former players Scotty Cummings and Dane Swan in a podcast hosted by Ralph Horowitz.

New this year is In The Game With Damian Barrett, a sports reporter best known for his work on Triple M, The Footy Show and on Crocmedia’s The Sounding Board podcast. Barrett left the Nine TV show last year and now is on staff with AFL Media. His new podcast features interviews with football’s most influential figures.

Listen to Superfooty here.

Audible’s ANZ Originals program launching with Marc Fennell

• Ben Naparstek on the ambitious and diverse catalogue of 2019 programming

By James Manning

As Audible Australia’s director of original content, Ben Naparstek has drawn upon his experience in media to help build the audio platform’s first Australia and New Zealand Audible Originals program.

In just a few years Naparstek has moved across the media in a number of prominent roles that started with his appointment as editor of The Monthly a decade ago aged 23. He later edited Good Weekend for Fairfax Media, worked for SBS Online and then PR agency Edelman before joining Audible.

“Great quality storytelling runs in my veins,” he told Mediaweek. “It is what I have been commissioning and is what I have been devoted to for almost 10 years now. At Audible I have never been more excited about the opportunity to innovate, to tell rich stories and to grow the Australian entertainment landscape. Audio can unlock other opportunities that other mediums can’t.

“A producer with a small recording device can often extract private stories that a film and TV crew could never access. We can create long binge worthy dramas that TV networks, working with much larger budgets, would find hard to take on. Particularly in production extensive genres like science fiction or period drama.

“We can also move fast – go out quickly to market with premium titles that don’t rely on print publishing or TV production timelines.

“We can assemble teams with creators from entertainment industries as diverse as comedy, gaming, film, TV, publishing, music, theatre, journalism – bring together creators who might never have thought of working in audio before.”

Although Naparstek has presented a formal schedule of various formats – from audio documentaries to shorter length podcast episodes – to launch between April and December this year, he is more than ready to move quickly on additional opportunities as they arise.

“Quality is the number one focus for us. We can resource teams accordingly if we need to get out something fast with a time-sensitive deadline.”

He added Audible has facilities to ensure high production qualities during several rounds of editing with the aim of delivering a powerful narrative arc.

Marc Fennell’s It Burns documentary is the first from this slate and it will be released in April. Naparstek said it’s a great way to start this series. “If there is one piece of spoken word entertainment you listen to this year it should be this quirkily brilliant foray into human psychology.

“Marc is a much-admired TV presenter already, but he was keen for a global platform to tell what is a very international story. It Burns takes listeners from the NSW Central Coast to South Carolina following a 10-year long scandal-plagued race to breed the world’s hottest chilli. In the process he discovers a dark internet sub-culture of chilli heads who participate in chilli eating competitions. It’s not just about chilli, it’s about how people use pain to define themselves and make themselves feel alive.

People wanting to hear the content can access them in different ways. Naparstek explained:

Some of the originals are free to everyone, some are free just to Audible members and others require payment.

It Burns will be available free to anyone who has downloaded and registered on the Audible app.

Here are some of the other 2019 releases from the Audible portfolio:

• Blood Territory (Autumn 2019) – When a dubious plea deal buries the truth about Jim O’Connell’s murder, his parents seek to unravel it themselves in this NT true crime show. Follow the story by journalist Mark Whittaker of corruption allegations, a shadowy figure known as The Vigilante and Jim’s convicted killer, who is released from parole and supported by Jim’s parents who are convinced he is innocent.

• Beautiful (Autumn 2019) – Historical fantasy author, Juliet Marillier, brings to life a reimagined version of Nordic fairy tale, East of the Sun and West of the Moon. Juliet will use magical audio narration and production to illuminate the life of the curious troll princess, Hulde, a character forgotten by the original tale.

• Invisible Women (Winter 2019) – Author Nikki Gemmell writes her first scripted audio drama in the form of this funny and pertinent multicast comedy about female friendship and embracing the next phase of life. This Audible Original explores the experience of middle-age female invisibility in Australia through the eyes of newly-separated Lu, who joins four old schoolmates on an odyssey into the Australian outback. Tension mounts as a school reunion goes awry and old betrayals and estranged parents are revisited.

Nikki Gemmell

• Ghosthunter (Winter 2019) – Sometimes the most terrifying ghosts are our own. Documentary-maker Ben Lawrence follows part-time ghost hunter, Jason King, in the hunt for King’s absent father. Soon, their search converges with a police investigation and a horrific family secret is exposed.

• Zero Day Code (Winter 2019) – A modern city can feed itself for a week. No more. Set in the near future, with global food supplies under increasing pressure from worsening droughts, floods and extreme weather events, this story by acclaimed writer John Birmingham taps into the power of long-established western mythologies about apocalyptic collapse. Zero Day Code follows a handful of survivors from the first day of the collapse into violent, uncertain futures.

• John Safran vs Sorcery (Spring 2019) – The renowned author of Depends What You Mean By Extremist and international bestseller Murder In Mississippi, explores modern-day witchcraft and the psychology of belief. In his new series, John packs his bag and heads off to places where Black Magic leads to murder and exorcisms, and asks why in this world of science and rationality are there communities around the world still fearful of dark spirit realms?No Gangsters in Paradise (Spring 2019) – In Western Sydney, a wave of gun violence tests the boundaries of the justice system and holds to question Australia’s treatment of migrant Muslim communities. The story by journalist Mahmood Fazal investigates the tension between Australian law and foreign ideals of young migrants, which were justified in wars they thought they had left behind.

• The Goodbye Party (Summer 2019) – In the early 1980s, the semi-naked bodies of a young man and woman are discovered by a riverbank in Sydney’s leafy North Shore. Inspired by a true cold case, this is a fictional thriller where lies, conspiracies, and memories finally expose who killed the couple and why. This riveting story by Louis Nowra reveals a shadowy world of sex parties, wife-swapping, scientific experiments, bizarre cults, and a possible CIA assassination.

The Audible Australian Originals program announcement comes as new research commissioned on behalf of Audible finds Australians are keen to broaden their minds and to feel inspired by the words they consume in 2019.

Research highlights:

• 80% of Australians feeling their conversations are becoming more negative
• Aussies are also looking to be positively impacted by the content they consume in 2019, with over half of those surveyed yearning for positivity and inspiration in the words, stories and public figures they come into contact with throughout the year
• 92% of Australians feel some words have lost their power or are overused, citing ‘fake news’,‘breaking news’ and ‘climate change’ as the most common
• 72% of Australians think that some public figures could benefit from using better and more inspiring words in 2019, with politicians most in need of improvement

ARN promotes Nick Flood to national role as sales team restructured

ARN has announced new appointments and internal promotions as part of a restructure of its national commercial leadership team.

ARN Melbourne sales director Nick Flood (Pictured) has been promoted to the role of national direct sales director. Flood will continue to lead the Melbourne team as well as working closely with ARN’s direct sales leaders in each market.

Anthony Bartram has been appointed to the newly created role of national trading director. Bartram joins ARN from Adshel and oOh! and brings more than 15 years of media sales experience to the role. He will be based in ARN’s Sydney office, commencing in late April.

Anthony Bartram

Lauren Joyce has been appointed to the role of national strategy director. Joyce is a Cannes Young Lion Gold Award winner and has previously held strategic and client partnership roles at Mamamia, Universal McCann and Ensemble. Based in ARN’s Sydney office, she will join the team in April.

Lauren Joyce

Sam Harris has been appointed Melbourne agency sales director. Harris has previously held roles in media agency and media sales at Starcom, Authentic and SBS. He will commence his role in May.

Sam Harris

ARN’s chief commercial officer Pete Whitehead said: “These new appointments and promotion are part of ARN’s ongoing commitment to invest in the very best talent and expertise across all facets of our business. The restructure of the national commercial leadership team is a key part of ARN’s commercial strategy to continue to drive growth across our audio and digital platforms in all markets.”

Nielsen announces partnership with geospatial experts RDA Research

This announcement from global measurement company Nielsen about a partnership with geospatial experts RDA Research to launch an integrated solution in the Australian market called GeoCMV Explorer:

GeoCMV Explorer enables advertisers, agencies, publishers and sports bodies to make more accurate marketing decisions using RDA’s sophisticated location-based planning tool and Nielsen’s rich target audience profiles.

GeoCMV offers the ability to create stronger responses to advertising briefs based on rich audience profiles. Geospatial maps are used to light up consumer behaviour, media consumption, intention to purchase, demographic, socioeconomic, attitudinal and segmentation variables.

With the power of 2,400 attitudinal and behavioural variables from Nielsen Consumer & Media View, advertisers can optimise their media buying to specific detailed audiences based on location and proximity to nearby retail outlets and other points of interest, from RDA Research.

Monique Perry, managing director, media & sports, Nielsen said: “Clients can now add a layer of sophistication to their marketing brief responses by heat mapping their target audiences to pinpoint key prospects. In addition, they can identify the best media type by location (outdoor, print, digital, TV) to reach them.”

Robert Dommett, technical director, RDA Research said, “This partnership with Nielsen has created a unique fusion of broad and trusted audience profiling data with powerful, cloud-based geoanalytics – opening up a whole new dimension for media and retail planning. With this unique solution, clients can also import their own data for use in campaign planning and export target audience selections to third-party platforms.”

Monique Perry added, “GeoCMV Explorer is a game-changer for our clients who are keen to address their audiences with a more targeted execution. We are thrilled to work with RDA Research to deliver this level of addressability.”

10 relaunches Sports Tonight with new hosts and new timeslot

After first relaunching Sports Tonight as a weekly program in July last year, Network 10 has decided to have another crack with new hosts and a new timeslot.

In 2018 the program started on Sunday nights and later moved to Mondays. The host last year was Matt White who also doubles as 10’s head of sport.

However the program failed to engage with an audience as 10 hoped and the show is being relaunched with a new focus and a new format.

The hosts for the new program, launching on Wednesday March 20, are Roz Kelly and Scott Mackinnon who will deliver all the latest news, results, highlights and interviews from Australian and around the world. Also joining the program is 10 daily’s sport editor Anthony Sharwood bringing his sports knowledge and wit to the show as a regular panellist.

Kelly has been a former host of 10’s coverage of The Big Bash League, while Mackinnon is a longtime 10 sports reporter, host and producer who joined the broadcaster in 2005.

Sharwood was previously sports editor of HuffPostAustralia and He joined ten daily from first-person sports storytelling platform PlayersVoice where he was a senior editor. Sharwood has covered a Super Bowl and three Olympic Games.

10 is promising a program dedicated to breaking stories and discussing all the big issues in sport. While providing in-depth analysis and expert opinions, Sports Tonight will also bring the fun to sports news.

The refreshed format launches on the day before the AFL 2019 season starts. It also comes at Network 10 boasts a bigger sports roster with the 2019 Rugby World Cup, Supercars Championship, the MotoGP, The Rugby Championship, the Australian Formula One, Bledisloe Cup and the Melbourne Cup Carnival.

Former host Matt White remains 10 head of sport, in addition to hosting RPM weekly. He will also be on screen covering the Rugby World Cup and Melbourne Cup Carnival. He anchored 10’s weekend coverage of the Australian Grand Prix and will also remain involved with 10’s coverage of Supercars.

Sports Tonight will screen every Wednesday evening at 10.30pm on 10.

Jennifer Byrne revealed as Australia’s Mastermind quizmaster

SBS has confirmed a launch date and host for its new weekday series:

Famous for its challenging questions, intimidating setting and pervading air of tense expectation, Mastermind is a legendary tournament quiz show beloved around the world, from the UK to Russia – and soon, Australia, when it returns to our screens after 34 years weeknights on SBS from April.

With highly respected TV host, journalist and self-confessed quiz junkie Jennifer Byrne (ABC’s First Tuesday Book Club, Sunday, 60 Minutes, Foreign Correspondent) at the helm, the program places contenders in the iconic Mastermind chair and gives them two tense minutes to answer as many questions as possible on their chosen specialist subject.

Specialist subjects will include everything from Australian Parrots to The Harry Potter Series; John Cusack to The Whitlam Government Dismissal; Wicked: The Musical to Women in Australian Rallysport – and everything in between.

The contenders will advance to a general knowledge round, and the person with the highest combined score for both rounds is declared the winner. Each Friday the weekly finals will see one person advance to the semi-finals and eventually compete against other winners at the end of the season for the prestigious title of Australia’s Mastermind.

SBS director of TV and online content Marshall Heald said:

“We’re delighted to bring Australian audiences an entertaining and intelligent point of difference in the 6pm free to air slot with the truly iconic Mastermind – and who better to oversee proceedings than the inimitable Jennifer Byrne, who brings brains, gravitas and warmth to the role – a killer trifecta.”

Mastermind quizmaster Jennifer Byrne said:

“As an avid devotee of games and quizzes, being a quizmaster for Mastermind – the gold standard of its breed – is a huge thrill. I’m looking forward equally to drilling the contestants with tough questions – and sharing a friendly chat about their weird and wonderful specialist topics.”

Running for nearly 50 years in the UK, Mastermind is an addictive global phenomenon, originally inspired by creator Bill Wright’s experiences of being interrogated by the Gestapo during World War II, and captured on screen by the use of a spotlight, black chair and rapid fire questioning.

Mastermind premieres 6pm Monday 15 April on SBS. The series will air 6pm weeknights and will be available after broadcast on SBS On Demand.

TV Ratings Analysis: March 20

• Dinner party does it again, but MAFS audience waiting for Sunday
• AFL Footy Show starts another chapter, but well behind The Front Bar
• Tom Gleeson’s ABC night as Judith Lucy arrives at The Weekly

Wednesday: Week 12 2019

By James Manning

• Seven News 953,000/959,000
• Nine News 894,000/891,000
• A Current Affair 797,000
• ABC News 715,000
• 7.30 593,000
• The Project 249,000/431,000
• 10 News First 386,000
• SBS World News 115,000

Breakfast TV

• Sunrise 270,000
• Today 181,000


The 7pm supersoap Home And Away will only get one episode tonight in most markets because of the return of the AFL. So far over three nights this week the audiences have been 658,000, 556,000 and 648,000 last night.

The My Kitchen Rules teams with the lowest scores faced each other in the kitchen last night as Mick & Jodie-Anne were eliminated off the back of a sub-par main and disappointing dessert. Both Pete and Manu gave the courses scores of 3 for the main and 2 for the dessert. The series has continued with audiences in the 700,000s this week and has finished with 738,000.

Modern Family then returned to the schedule at 9pm in some markets with two episodes.

The Front Bar returned for 2019 in AFL markets and did huge business. The three-market metro crowd was just on 400,000. There was 278,000 watching in Melbourne, which was a bigger crowd than both 6pm news bulletins and it was only beaten in that market by MAFS.


A Current Affair looked at milk prices and what the increased prices can mean for dairy farmers. The midweek episode did 797,000 after audiences of 891,000 and then 775,000 this week.

There was an air of expectancy, again, around the Married At First Sight dinner party. There was plenty of tension, although Nine is saving the biggest blow-up for Sunday judging by the promos for the start of the show’s new week. The Wednesday audience was on 1.454m after 1.404m a week ago.

MAFS was a good lead-in for the latest version of The Footy Show, which showed off its third set of hosts in two years. After Craig Hutchison and then Eddie McGuire tried to extend the life of the show in recent years, a bigger overhaul was revealed this week. It was a modest start for the program with a three market audience of 275,000 – 193,000 of them in Melbourne. That was probably a reasonable start though for the new team given the hiding some thought the show might get from The Front Bar.


A busy episode of The Project featured AFLW boss and former regular 10 contributor Nicole Livingstone talking about the Tayla Harris photo, rock icon Bryan Adams visited and the program responded to criticisms PM Scott Morrison had about the program. There was 431,000 watching after 7pm.

Bondi Rescue followed with a new episode and then a repeat with 304,000 and 283,000.

It was then two episodes of Law & Order: SVU, also featuring a new episode and a repeat with audiences of 194,000 and 174,000.

It was then time for the second refresh of the Sports Tonight franchise, this time with new hosts and anew timeslot. The program did 63,000 with its biggest audience in Sydney with 28,000.


One of Australian TV’s hottest comedy properties has almost taken over primetime, again, for the ABC on its comedy night. First up at 8pm Tom Gleeson hosted Hard Quiz, which featured a battle of the duds with former contestants who had made early exits in the past. The program did 697,000 after 635,000 a week ago.

Gleeson was then one of the star attractions for the return of The Weekly With Charlie Pickering. He shares the stage with the host of course and last night they welcomed new team member Judith Lucy. The series returned with 604,000.

Get Krack!n then did 279,000 followed by two UK panel shows – QI, with 247,000, and then a repeat of Adam Hills: The Last Leg on 160,000.


Episode three of the four-part Australia In Colour continues to perform well with 300,000 after 341,000 watched episode two last week.

Versailles returned last night in the late, late slot of 10.40pm, with an audience under 45,000.

Week 12 TV: Wednesday
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 12.1% 7 20.7% 9 27.1% 10  7.5% SBS One 4.9%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.2% 7TWO 2.9% GO! 2.9% 10 Bold 4.0% VICELAND 1.7%
ABC ME 0.5% 7mate 2.2% GEM 2.1% 10 Peach 2.2% Food Net 0.7%
ABC NEWS 1.2% 7flix 1.4% 9Life 3.2%     NITV 0.2%
    7Food 0.4%            
TOTAL 16.0%   27.6%   35.3%   13.7%   7.5%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 10.76% 7 18.68% 9 20.16% WIN 8.39% SBS One 4.09%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 3.24% 7TWO 5.12% GO! 4.86% WIN Bold 3.87% VICELAND 2.65%
ABC ME 1.07% 7mate 2.95% GEM 3.65% WIN Peach 2.14% Food Net 0.76%
ABC NEWS 1.58% 7flix 1.91% 9Life 2.52% Sky News  on WIN 1.35% NITV 0.3%
TOTAL 16.6%   28.7%   31.2%   15.8%   7.81%


87.2% 12.8%
  1. Married At First Sight Nine 1,454,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 959,000
  3. Seven News Seven 953,000
  4. Nine News Nine 894,000
  5. Nine News 6:30 Nine 891,000
  6. A Current Affair Nine 797,000
  7. My Kitchen Rules Seven 738,000
  8. ABC News ABC 715,000
  9. Hard Quiz S4 ABC 697,000
  10. Home And Away Seven 648,000
  11. The Weekly With Charlie Pickering ABC 604,000
  12. 7.30 ABC 593,000
  13. The Chase Australia Seven 537,000
  14. Hot Seat Nine 470,000
  15. The Project 7pm 10 431,000
  16. The Front Bar Seven 400,000
  17. 10 News First 10 386,000
  18. Modern Family Seven 380,000
  19. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 330,000
  20. Bondi Rescue 10 304,000
Demo Top 5

16-39 Top Five

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 427,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 156,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 133,000
  4. Home And Away Seven 124,000
  5. A Current Affair Nine 121,000


18-49 Top Five

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 686,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 270,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 243,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 231,000
  5. Home And Away Seven 213,000


25-54 Top Five

  1. Married At First Sight Nine 764,000
  2. My Kitchen Rules Seven 306,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 305,000
  4. Seven News Seven 284,000
  5. Nine News 6:30 Nine 267,000
WEDNESDAY Multichannel
  1. Talking Married 9Life 264,000
  2. Rusty Rivets ABCKIDS/COMEDY 152,000
  3. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 152,000
  4. Peter Rabbit ABCKIDS/COMEDY 149,000
  5. Kazoops! PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 147,000
  6. NCIS: Los Angeles Ep 2 (R) 10 Bold 141,000
  7. Peppa Pig PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 135,000
  8. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 134,000
  9. Pj Masks PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 132,000
  10. Wanda And The Alien PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 131,000
  11. Thomas And Friends PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 125,000
  12. Noddy Toyland Detective PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 125,000
  13. Pie In The Sky PM 7TWO 122,000
  14. Bondi Rescue Ep 3 (R) 10 Bold 118,000
  15. The Big Bang Theory – (R) 9GO! 118,000
  16. Dino Dana ABCKIDS/COMEDY 116,000
  17. Andy’s Prehistoric Adventures ABCKIDS/COMEDY 114,000
  18. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 113,000
  19. Hey Duggee AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 111,000
  20. NCIS: Los Angeles (R) 10 Bold 109,000
  1. Gogglebox Australia Lifestyle Channel 123,000
  2. Selling Houses Australia Lifestyle Channel 104,000
  3. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 57,000
  4. Live: AFL 360 FOX FOOTY 54,000
  5. Blaze And The Monster Machines Nick Jr. 50,000
  6. Border Security: Australia’s Front Line FOX8 50,000
  7. NSW People’s Forum Sky News Live 49,000
  8. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 48,000
  9. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 47,000
  10. PML Later Sky News Live 46,000
  11. Location, Location, Location Lifestyle Channel 43,000
  12. Border Security: Australia’s Front Line FOX8 39,000
  13. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 38,000
  14. Top Wing Nick Jr. 37,000
  15. Highway Patrol FOX8 35,000
  16. Family Guy FOX8 32,000
  17. Shimmer And Shine Nick Jr. 32,000
  18. NCIS TVH!TS 32,000
  19. Peppa Pig Nick Jr. 31,000
  20. Nella The Princess Knight Nick Jr. 31,000

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

Pacific announces promotions as part of commercial team restructure

Pacific has announced a restructure of its commercial team, including a number of promotions:

Pacific’s commercial director Nicole Bence said: “This restructure will better support us as we strengthen our existing relationships and diversify into new revenue streams, underpinned by insights and data. The new look commercial team will support all of this and more, as our business continues to evolve and we explore cross-platform opportunities backed by the power of the SWM network.”

To further supercharge agency and direct sales, Andrew Brain steps up to the role of national sales director. Brain joined Pacific in late 2018 as director of digital sales. Prior to taking on this role, he was the digital commercial director at Australian Radio Network.

The restructure also sees Rebecca Alexander-Head’s remit expand as Pacific’s existing strategy and insights teams come together under her leadership. This newly merged division will be known as Pi (Pacific Insights) and will act as an audience intelligence consultancy, designed to fuel business growth with highly relevant data, research and intimate audience insight.

Rebecca Alexander-Head

Andrew Cameron, who joined Pacific as executive creative director for the recent launch of content and marketing agency Eve, will also take on a broader role. As part of the restructure, his scope has expanded to oversee not only creative and ideation but also production and implementation across Pacific.

Andrew Cameron

News Brands

Project fights PM’s ‘ugly’ claims about Waleed Aly

The Project has hit back at Prime Minister Scott Morrison in a fierce rebuttal, accusing Australia’s most senior politician of dragging Waleed Aly into “an ugly political fight”, reports’s Hannah Paine.

Morrison criticised Aly on ABC TV, claiming he had told an “appalling lie” after The Project host repeated claims first made in 2011 that the politician had urged his party to exploit concerns about Muslims in Australia for votes.

Host Hamish Macdonald revealed that after Aly’s editorial aired – and was widely praised on social media – the Prime Minister’s office contacted the show in a “furious exchange” claiming it was “defamatory”.

“Update: Scott Morrison’s office has contacted The Project to deny the 2011 report on comments he has alleged to have made within a shadow cabinet meeting,” the program had tweeted later that night.

“Now we offered Mr Morrison the opportunity to respond live on this desk when he was due to appear on this program on Monday,” Macdonald said on Wednesday.

“Not only did he decline but his media team pulled him out of the scheduled appearance altogether.”

[Read the original]

Inside YouTube’s battle to shut down video of the New Zealand shooting

Six thousand kilometres from Christchurch, in a room in San Bruno, California, as Friday’s bloody massacres at two New Zealand mosques played out, a team of YouTube “incident commanders” were battling to remove the grisly video recorded by the alleged perpetrator, report Elizabeth Dwoskin and Craig Timberg in The Washington Post.

Tens of thousands of videos – many repackaged or recut versions of the original footage that showed the horrific murders – were being posted. As soon as the group took down one, another would appear, as quickly as one per second in the hours after the shooting.

Despite being one of the crown jewels of Google’s stable of massively profitable and popular online services, for many hours YouTube could not stop the flood of users who uploaded and re-uploaded the footage showing the mass murder of Muslims. About 24 hours later – after round-the-clock toil – company officials felt the problem was increasingly controlled, but acknowledged the broader challenges were far from resolved.

[Read the original]

Christchurch massacre: video exposes flaws in Facebook reporting

Why did Facebook air live video of the New Zealand mosque shooting for 17 minutes? Didn’t anyone alert the company while it was happening? Facebook says no, reports Associated Press.

According to its deputy general counsel, Chris Sonderby, none of the 200 or so people who watched the live video flagged it to moder­ators. In a Tuesday blog post, Sonderby said the first user report didn’t come until 12 minutes after the broadcast ended.

All of which raises extra questions – among them, why so many people watched without saying anything, whether Facebook relies too much on outsiders and machines to report trouble, and whether users and law enforcement officials even know how to reach Facebook with concerns about what they’re seeing.

Facebook said it removed the video “within minutes” of being notified by New Zealand police.

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Bauer Media set to sell Money magazine to Rainmaker Group

Bauer Media is set to sell its personal finance magazine Money to Rainmaker Group, four months after closing women’s magazine Cosmopolitan, reports The Australian’s Lily Vitorovich.

Bauer’s local boss Paul Dykzeul, who is travelling in Poland at the moment, was tight lipped on the deal.

Chris Page, managing director of financial services information company Rainmaker, didn’t return calls seeking comment.

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Are Married At First Sight producers running out of storylines?

With yet another episode succumbing to the old wife-swap trope, it seems like Married At First Sight producers have run out of storylines. Or, at least, they’re very fond of recycling the tried-and-tested ones, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Amy Croffey.

At Wednesday’s dinner party, Dan and Jess catch up again behind their partners’ backs, to pash and plan how they will reveal their weeks-long clandestine affair in a way that gets maximum exposure.

Rather than Jess and Dan being open and honest with their partners at the dinner party, the producers decide they should wait until Sunday’s commitment ceremony – where, according to a preview, Jess will drop the affair bombshell while sitting on the couch with her husband, Mick.

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Killing Eve claims first local victim as it secures Friday timeslot

In an early episode of The Heights, the ABC’s 21st century Australian soap, two of the many characters go in search of a third who has fled her hospital bed – and newborn son – overnight.

When talking to a housemate, the missing woman’s brother, Ryan (Mitchell Bourke), starts playing the master detective. His old friend and fellow searcher, Ana (Cara McCarthy), has to rein him in. “OK, Miss Fisher,” she says, suggesting he chill out.

It’s a good line and a telling reference. The Heights is currently airing on Friday nights at 8.30pm, which has previously been the very successful home of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, the risque-and-retro whodunit that had a large and dedicated audience. Quite why The Heights is in that timeslot is unclear. It’s long been the preserve of, well, murder mysteries, but thankfully the new show’s body count is currently zero.

The ABC has an alternative to Neighbours and Home and Away, and I’m not sure it knows where to put it.

A total of 30 half-hour episodes have been commissioned, which would disappear after a mere six weeks if the traditional soap schedule of weeknights Monday to Friday was adhered to. As it is, it’s airing two episodes on a Friday night, at least until mid-April, when the show goes on hiatus for approximately two months so the highly anticipated second season of Killing Eve can take over. It’s a baffling decision – any momentum The Heights has gained will dissipate.

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Billions artfully peers through a looking glass: Stan series returns

In the world of Billions, the character of Axe Capital analyst Taylor Amber Mason sits in a confluence of art, politics and illumination, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Michael Idato.

The character, the first gender non-binary character in the main cast of a US television drama, is a rising star within Axe Capital. In the show’s third season, Taylor has emerged as someone Bobby Axelrod has earmarked for greater success.

The show’s creators Brian Koppleman and David Levien said they wanted a character who was both brilliant and ambitious, but was also capable of taking their own “moral inventory”.

In finding the character, the actor who plays Taylor, Asia Kate Dillon, used a quote from the singer Nina Simone as a touchstone: that it is an artist’s job to reflect society.

The role was written as non-binary and Dillon, who identifies as non-binary and uses singular they pronouns, credits the show for not tokenising Taylor’s gender identity.

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Towards darkness: Billions star Maggie Siff gets candid

As TV couples go, Billions’ Wendy and Chuck Rhoades are a little out of the ordinary, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Michael Idato.

By day Wendy is the confident in-house performance coach at Axe Capital, encouraging her boss Bobby Axelrod (Damian Lewis) to ever greater heights of financial chicanery.

At night she goes home to Chuck (Paul Giamatti), the US attorney determined to bring down Bobby, with whom she engages in Bondage/Discipline-Sadism/Masochism (BDSM) role play, with Wendy in the dominant role and Chuck as the slave.

It is, admits actress Maggie Siff, a lot to take in.

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Sports Media

Tayla Harris: picture reaction shows we still need to grow up

It’s a cracking picture. A gifted athlete captured at full stretch and at the height of her powers, reports The Australian’s Wally Mason.

Carlton forward Tayla Harris takes a contested mark against the Western Bulldogs and launches a drop punt more than 40m to score the first goal of the AFLW’s Pride Game.

A metre off the ground with her right leg extended in her follow-through, photographer Michael Willson captures a fantastic image of Harris in full flight.

The image of Harris, published on Seven AFL social media pages on Tuesday night, provoked a tirade of offensive, sexist and stupid comments. Seven’s reaction to the trolls was to take the picture down.

Seven ultimately agreed and reinstated the picture with an apology, saying deleting it had “sent the wrong message”.

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The fierce backlash against misogyny is something worth celebrating

Rather than focus on the impact of faceless misogynists attempting to silence or sideline women from public life – especially in that once male-dominated arena, sport – which is what they want, let’s put the emphasis on the fact these backward oddballs have been shown to no longer hold much influence, reports The Age’s Wendy Tuohy.

And what they have left is fading fast. If the generalised outcry generated by sexist comments about a Facebook image of mid-flight footballer, Tayla Harris, is a sign (and many commentators say it is), then we have witnessed a turning point. Or, at least we are seeing its start.

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Team cut from Super Rugby competition at end of broadcast deal

The Sunwolves have been jettisoned from Super Rugby after four years in the competition, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Georgina Robinson.

The Japanese team was expected to be informed of their fate via phone hook-up on Wednesday afternoon.

In a plan first revealed by the Herald last year, Super Rugby will return to a round-robin format with 14 teams.

The SANZAAR partners Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Argentina will not announce the changes formally until Friday, according to a statement.

But it is understood the competition in its current format will run its course for the term of the broadcast deal, meaning 2020 will be the Sunwolves’ final season.

The move will be a blow to Australia’s Super Rugby franchises, who saw the Sunwolves’ ongoing involvement as integral to the commercial growth of their businesses and the wider game in Australia.

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New-look AFL Footy Show debuts after undergoing off-season revamp

It featured new hosts, new panel members, new segments and a new look. But did the Footy Show hit the right note with viewers? asks the Herald Sun.

After months of speculation and hype surrounding the show’s off-season revamp, the Footy Show debuted on Wednesday night with Neroli Meadows and Anthony “Lehmo” Lehmann taking over the hosting duties.

They were joined on the panel by Brendan Fevola and Dylan Alcott while four-time premiership Hawk Shaun Burgoyne and Magpie Mason Cox were special guests.

Later in the show, Sunday Footy Show regulars Matthew Lloyd and Nathan Brown subbed in to break down some serious football issues.

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TV Tonight reports on Footy Show revamp: For & Against

On a day when the biggest breaking news in football was Tayla Harris, the issue only registered a few minutes discussion on Nine’s new-look AFL Footy Show, comments TV Tonight’s David Knox.

If it wanted to demonstrate it means business, the show really should have had Harris on set (radio managed it yesterday morning). It would have drawn a line in the sand between two eras.

Instead this was more Before the Game than the traditional AFL Footy Show with Anthony ‘Lehmo’ Lehmann, Neroli Meadows, Brendan Fevola and Dylan “I’m a tennis player on a footy show” Alcott (his words).

While Lehmo kept things moving, and the studio audience was on side, team sheets had been discarded for gags and comedy. There were AFL coaches talking Married at First Sight, Shane Crawford in pre-recorded segments with players, plus guests Mason Cox, Shaun Burgoyne, Matthew Lloyd, Nathan Brown and Billy Slater. “Supergroup” Arc closed the show, running 10 minutes overtime despite being pre-recorded.

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