Thursday July 9, 2020

Podcast Week: True Crime Live, PodcastOne climbs, Wippa & Cath

By James Manning

• Gritty Pretty Radio, Wil & Charlie milestone, Covid-19 safety

Australian True Crime: Live with Andrew Rule & Julia Robson

A live episode of Australian True Crime will stream live at 8 pm AEST on Saturday 18 July. Early bird tickets start at $14.90+fees and are on sale from Tickets are valid for the live show and replay, allowing fans to ‘watch live or watch later’.

Australian True Crime hosts Meshel Laurie and Emily Webb will be live in studio with Julia Robson while Andrew Rule is joining via video link.

TEG Dainty is promoting the second instalment of Australian True Crime: Live. Following the success of their debut virtual event in May, Laurie and Webb will once again connect fans with interesting people – this time Julia Robson (Chasing Charlie) and Andrew Rule (Chopper/Underbelly). Rule will talk about his time and experiences working with the infamous Mark ‘Chopper’ Read, and Robson will take viewers behind the scenes of the hit podcast Chasing Charlie.

PodcastOne listening doubles during Covid-19

PodcastOne Australia listening over the COVID-19 period, March 1 to June 30 has increased 100%, parent company SCA revealed this week.

“Following a huge month for live steaming and radio podcast listening in May we expected to see huge growth when compared to the same time last year, SCA chief sales officer Brian Gallagher said.

“We’ve experienced month-on-month growth across the whole network with Hamish and Andy, The Howie Games, Matt and Alex All Day Breakfast Show, The Briefing, Emsolation, Motley Fool, Just The Gist, Global Truths, Birth Baby and Beyond and ListenABLE, being the biggest growth titles,” SCA head of podcasting – PodcastOne Australian, Grant Tothill, told Mediaweek.

“Pleasingly, the audience increase across the network has been supported by an increase in advertising revenue, with PodcastOne Australia having its best quarter since launch across the April – June period, with June being the biggest revenue month to date, allowing us to end the financial year 100% up year on year.

“To see increased listening translating into increased revenue is a positive sign podcasting is growing as a new commercial medium in Australia.”

Stitcher changes hands for half a billion


The US podcast platform Stitcher is changing hands for around $500m according to US reports this week. The buyer is satellite radio giant SiriusXM, the home of Howard Stern among many others. SiriusXM is also the owner of music-streamer Pandora.

Until the deal is closed and there is commentary from SiriusXM, there has been speculation about what it plans for the Stitcher portfolio and whether it would remain a standalone business or if the brands would be integrated into different parts of the satellite radio business.

The Stitcher business reportedly had revenues of close to $100m last year. Sticker cost its current owner Scripps $80m when it combined two podcasting businesses in 2016. Scripps is also the owner of Triton Digital who work with many businesses in Australia including Grant Broadcasting and Planet Broadcasting. Triton Digital also measures podcast downloads in Ausrtalia and publishes the monthly Australian Podcast Ranker.

Everyone relax: Wil Anderson & Charlie Clausen milestone

Planet Broadcasting’s podcast has celebrated its 10th anniversary this month with an anniversary episode. Hosts Wil Anderson and Charlie Clausen hosted the first episode in July 2010. Across the years Wil and Charlie rested the podcast for a while and also an alternative was started called Fofop with “guest Charlies”.

The team at Tofop includes artist James Fosdike who supplies the great artwork. Michael Wayne (MicHAL) is the show’s tech producer who gets it to air. Veteran TV announcer John Deeks supplies the intro (“The program is not suitable for anyone under the age of 15, or anyone who enjoys succinct, coherent conversation”). The anniversary special paid tribute to the Walking the Room podcast hosts Greg Behrendt and Dave Anthony who have helped the hosts build a US audience for Tofop. “We should mention Sam Cav too who is our silent partner in this almost business,” said Anderson. “And thanks to Planet Broadcasting too where we are very happy to be,” added Charlie.

Listen to Tofop here.

Cath and Wippa together

Let’s Talk About Sarcoma is a podcast that looks at the expected, the unexpected and everything in between post sarcoma diagnosis. The podcast is hosted by Nova’s Wippa and podcaster Cathrine Mahoney (I Quit My Day Job) and presented by Sock it To Sarcoma and the Cooper Rice-Brading Foundation.

Over five episodes the hosts will be talking about all aspects of sarcoma. Each week we will be joined by patients, family and friends, medics, specialists in the sarcoma field as well as hearing from the two foundations behind creating this podcast; Sock It To Sarcoma and the Cooper Rice-Brading Foundation.

Wippa told Mediaweek: “This is a project that myself and Cathrine are very passionate and invested in. Back in 2017 we met and incredible young man called Cooper Rice-Brading. Cooper had recently been diagnosed with Osteosarcoma and we met him through Nova Radio in Sydney where we both worked. We were immediately taken with what an articulate, strong and wise beyond his years young man he was. We attend an inaugural fundraising event where Coop spoke and we were so in awe of what a courageous young man he is, he couldn’t shake the pair of us after that and a strong bond and friendship began. Although Cooper sadly lost his battle, his incredible legacy and foundation live on. Since the inception of this podcast we have also been honoured to meet Mandy Basson and see first-hand the work her daughter Abbie started with Sock It To Sarcoma.”

Mahoney meanwhile continues her I Quit My Day Job podcast which is up to episode 44. The series had been on News Corp’s WHIMN platform, but when that closed down she has continued as an indie. Go Cath!

Gritty Pretty Radio launches

For over a decade as a magazine and beauty editor, Eleanor Pendleton has set out to cut the crap from the Australian beauty industry via Gritty Pretty. In her new podcast, Gritty Pretty Radio, Pendleton opens her beauty bible to podcast listeners with the help of co-host and beauty director Erin Cook.

In each episode of Gritty Pretty Radio, Eleanor and Erin will be joined by beauty-room heavyweights to discuss the trends and the changing nature of the beauty industry. So far season one of Gritty Pretty Radio has featured interviews with Queer Eye’s contagiously positive grooming expert Jonathan van Ness, and local supermodel turned international business-powerhouse Miranda Kerr.

Listen to Gritty Pretty Radio here.

Covid-19 safe studio principles released

The Australian radio and podcast industry sector consultation group has issued a set of Covid-19 Safe Studio Principles to support the broadcast industry to safely produce live and pre-recorded content.

The guidelines have been developed by AFTRS, the national screen and broadcast school, in consultation with industry, to provide a resource that can assist with safety while Covid-19 restrictions and containment measures are in place. Whilst many stations and studios are already working with safety measures in place, the Safe Studio Principles provides a centralised document all sectors are welcome to use.

The consultation group comprises the Chief Medical Officers Department Australian Department of Health, Commercial Radio Australia, Australian Film Radio and Television School, Australian Broadcasting Commission, First Nations Media Australia, SBS, TAFE NSW, Community Media Training Organisation and Community Broadcasting Association of Australia.

The guidelines offer advice on general infection controls as well as specific advice for safe studio principles and for broadcasting in remote communities, as well as a risk assessment template and notes on developing a risk mitigation strategy.

“Whilst our industry did not shut down, it has been disrupted and coping admirably in such unusual times. There are challenges with working in studios. And the industry knows how incredibly important it is that we work in a way that ensures our community and teams ares not exposed to unnecessary risk,” said AFTRS head of radio Fyona Smith (pictured). “I’d like to thank the members of the industry consultation group. It was a unique project across all sectors and the power of a collective effort is evident.”

The COVID-19 Safe Studio Principles are available to download here.


Australia’s biggest magazine company starts a new TV campaign

The company that will soon not be known as Bauer Media has launched a TV campaign featuring 18 of its biggest 43 brands.

The ad campaign will be running on the Seven Network across four weeks beginning now.

Called ‘The Little Things’, the TV spot voiceover says:

“Things are a little different these days. There is a little more time to dream a little, to experiment a little, learn a little, love a little. Why not bring a little luxury into your life…it’s the little things that make a big difference.”

The images feature people working in their homes and then end with magazine covers. There is no mention of Bauer in the ad, but a closing image of the 18 titles says the brands are available in newsagents, supermarkets and at Bauer online subscription portal magshop.

Local Bauer management is now working with the new owner Mercury Capital on strategy and a new name. Both parties realise the importance of promoting not just their new brands, but the sector in general.

After the private equity acquisition, Bauer CEO Brendon Hill told Mediaweek:

“With all the major titles now in one place we can do a better job of marketing ourselves. We are about to launch a ‘Why magazines’ campaign. That’s something that hasn’t been done for a long time and we can start conversations about the medium in general.”

Hill also added: “This signals an exciting new chapter for the business. With new ownership and our bolstered portfolio, we have unparalleled opportunities to connect with more Australians than ever before and continue our strategy of digital growth and innovation.

“We have increased flexibility to diversify revenue streams and grow and innovate across our multi-platform offerings. Additionally, we are well placed to invest in the key drivers of future success – high-quality content and digital development which is good for us, our audiences, clients and the Australian industry as a whole.”

Bauer’s expanded portfolio of 43 brands now reaches six in 10 Australian women each month with the publisher claiming more than 6.5 million women each month across magazines, websites, video, social, customer review sites, podcasts and experiences; a print readership of 6.8 million per year and social connections of more than 30.5 million.

See also: Brendon Hill on 3.30am sale of Bauer Media to private equity

sony foundation
Sony Foundation’s first grants as ‘Fire Fight’ album raises $450k

Sony Foundation Australia has confirmed grants for two projects in the bushfire devastated communities of Mallacoota, Victoria, and Ulladulla, New South Wales, as Sony Music Entertainment Australia announces that sales from the ‘Artists Unite for Fire Fight: Concert for National Bushfire Relief’ charity album has now reached a total of $450,000.

At the historic Fire Fight Australia concert in February, Sony Music artist and Sony Foundation ambassador, Guy Sebastian, presented a $200,000 cheque on behalf of Sony Foundation Australia whilst on stage. The funds were directed to the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal (FRRR), who were one of the major beneficiaries of the concert.

Today, two communities have been informed of their share of the $200,000 to fund and roll-out their projects. Both projects will provide a place for young people to contribute to their community, whilst having access to tailored models of support to recover from the trauma of the bushfire disaster. The two projects are:

1. ‘The Sanctuary’, Mallacoota Youth Group, VIC – Sony Foundation’s support will contribute to building the capacity, resilience and wellbeing of the young people in Mallacoota, through the activities and operations of an emerging youth centre called ‘The Sanctuary.’

Mallacoota’s youth will use the space to study, play music, make art, play games, organise programs and events and run workshops. ‘The Sanctuary’ provides pathways for young people to access mentoring, social networks and resources in the community.

2. ‘Sanctuary of Wellbeing and Renewal’, Ulladulla High School, NSW – Fifteen Ulladulla High School students lost their homes in the fires. Additionally, many students have been dislocated due to damage to their properties and family businesses.

Sony Foundation’s funding will assist with establishing a ‘Sanctuary of Wellbeing and Renewal’ for the entire student population, benefitting over 1,200 students and their families. The Sanctuary will provide a safe environment for positive initiatives that enhance student and organisational contributions to enable positive recovery and resilience.

Additionally, Sony Music Entertainment has now raised $450,000 from the sale of the Fire Fight charity album. This amount is in addition to Sony Foundation’s $200,000 donation, with all proceeds from the sale of the album being donated to support additional projects benefiting young Australians in bushfire affected communities.

The additional funds raised since the announcement in mid-June, comes from not only the continued generosity of the Australian public who purchased the album, but also major retailers, JB Hi-Fi and Sanity, who have donated their margin to the worthwhile and much needed cause.

The special charity album of 23 tracks features unique live recordings from every artist who performed at the Fire Fight concert. It is available as a two-disc CD album from music retailers and as a digital download on iTunes.

Sophie Ryan, CEO of Sony Foundation Australia, and Denis Handlin, chairman and CEO of Sony Music Entertainment Australia and New Zealand, and founding board director of Sony Foundation Australia, said in a joint statement:

“We are continually reminded that the path to recovery in communities affected by the unprecedented bushfires is a long and challenging journey. We hope these communities see the success of this funding and special album as Australia’s way of saying we are standing by your side. We are overwhelmed and humbled with the generosity from everyone involved, which now includes the retail partners who have passed on profits so that more funds can go to these communities. Thank you also to the FRRR and its Board for the incredible work to enable us to contribute to the lives of so many young Australians.”

Sony Foundation Australia is the charitable arm of the Sony Group of Companies in Australia that has raised $35 million for youth-based causes since 1998.

Australia’s Oovvuu now a WordPress VIP featured technology partner

Mediatech scale-up Oovvuu will be integrated into some of the world’s largest news websites after being selected as a global video technology partner of WordPress VIP.

The decision propels Oovvuu into global markets on a giant scale, as the open source WordPress publishing platform is used by 37 percent of the world’s websites. WordPress VIP served more than 36 billion page views for its customers in 2019.

Oovvuu is one of the first companies added to the prestigious WordPress VIP Technology Partnership program since their parent company, Automattic, raised $300 million in a series D funding round led by Salesforce Ventures, valuing the company at $3 billion.

The four-year-old Australia-based company uses proprietary machine learning technology to read news articles, watch videos and match them together, to improve news reporting and generate billions in advertising ad dollars.

WordPress VIP CEO Nick Gernert said key criteria for technology partners included clear product expertise and innovative go-to-market strategies. He added that WordPress VIP vets every partner to identify companies with a proven track record of successful and forward-thinking implementations of WordPress integration at scale.

“WordPress VIP is experiencing significant growth and we’re poised to deliver transformational results for brands who require best-in-class digital experiences,” he said. “We’re excited to partner with Oovvuu to bring powerful video syndication tools to our customers.”

WordPress VIP’s enterprise clients include Capgemini, Airbnb, Facebook, Microsoft and News Corp, among others.

Oovvuu has already partnered with broadcasters and publishers including the BBC, Reuters, The Associated Press and The Guardian, as well as Australia’s Seven West Media.

Founder Ricky Sutton said: “This all began when we heard WordPress’ founders on a podcast two years ago speaking about their mission to support publishing. It matched ours so we cold-called them. We literally found their mobile number and called out of the blue.

“We’ve compared notes ever since as we have both watched the media market evolve, and it was clear that we were stronger together.”

Oovvuu’s selection as a global technology partner puts the scale-up in big company, alongside Facebook, Google AMP and Getty Images.

Oovvuu launched quietly in late 2014, with three founders Ricky Sutton, ex-Southern Star and WIN Corp CFO Ross McCreath and former Fairfax video staffer Greg Moore.

It attracted attention from IBM Watson, Amazon and Intel before receiving A$10 million from Australian investors Cygnet Capital and CP Ventures. It now has 14 staff in Sydney, New York and London, and is rapidly growing.

Sutton added: “We track news consumption habits daily and it shows us the future of news-telling will be video-led, but given recent scandals, it’s unlikely that will be built by Facebook or Google.

“Like WordPress, we recognise publishers and broadcasters have public trust and a burning passion to report the news. Now we are focused on building the tech to bind them together.”

Automattic is a start-up success itself. Launched in 2005 as a blogging platform, it now includes tools for images, membership and subscriptions and online shopping. Oovvuu adds video to the mix.

At the time of the $300 million investment by Salesforce Ventures, TechCrunch reported: “It’s not hard to see why Salesforce would invest such a gargantuan sum. WordPress currently powers one-third of the web.”

Sutton added: “The future is bright for video and publishing. The video market is already $52 billion, but just 7% of articles feature video. We aim to get that to as close to 100% as we can and flow the money back to trusted publishers and broadcasters.”

Top Photo: Oovvuu founders Greg Moore, Ricky Sutton and Ross McCreath

TV Ratings Wednesday July 8, Week 28, 2020

By James Manning

• Nine makes it four in a row with Wednesday recovery
• Season finales of Home Delivery, Bondi Rescue, Rosehaven returns

Seven News 1,168,000/1,108,000
Nine News 1,072,000/953,000
ABC News 815,000
A Current Affair 706,000
7.30 661,000
The Project 330,000/490,000
10 News 387,000/253,000
Sunrise 257,000
News Breakfast 225,000
SBS World News 211,000
The Drum 195,000
Today 195,000

Wednesday TV

Seven: Home and Away’s week has gone from 639,000 to 669,000 to 642,000 across three nights.
America’s Got Talent was then on 456,000 after 573,000 last week.
The Front Bar was on 307,000 with 193,000 in Melbourne with Andy Lee joining the desk again, this time sitting in for Mick Molloy. Guests included Jeff Kennett.

Nine: The channel is having its best week in a month with four successive wins so far. Wednesday recovered week-on-week with share up from 16.0% to 19.8%. If Seven still manages to win the week it will probably be with a reduced margin.
Nine’s winning midweek combo included A Current Affair as the numbers dipped from close to 800,000 on two nights to just over 700,000 last night.
RBT was on 544,000 after 394,000 a week ago and then new Emergency did 544,000 after Paramedics had similar numbers a week ago.

10: The Project dipped under 500,000 which hasn’t happened for a while this early in the week.
The Bondi Rescue season finale was on 347,000 with a visitor led away by the cops for inappropriate groping in the surf. A second episode did 270,000.

ABC: Home Delivery ended this season with Casey Donovan and an audience of 504,000.
That number climbed to 528,000 for The Weekly which even managed to feature a screen grab from the Media Morning Report! More power to this great program.
The returning sitcom Rosehaven started its new season on 496,000.

SBS: The host was in Russian on Tony Robinson’s World by Rail with 303,000 watching.
Who Gets to Stay in Australia? then did 128,000. The numbers then climbed for a repeat of Inside Aldi on 142,000.

Week 28 TV: Wednesday
ABC Seven Nine 10 SBS
ABC 12.8% 7 19.3% 9 19.8% 10  9.1% SBS One 6.0%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.4% 7TWO 2.9% GO! 2.9% 10 Bold 4.7% VICELAND 1.5%
ABC ME 0.6% 7mate 2.9% GEM 3.0% 10 Peach 2.6% Food Net 0.9%
ABC NEWS 2.3% 7flix 2.0% 9Life 1.9%     NITV 0.1%
        9Rush 1.0%     SBS World Movies 1.3%
TOTAL 18.1%   27.0%   28.6%   16.4%   9.8%


ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates 10 Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.3% 7 19.3% 9 17.5% WIN 8.1% SBS One 5.4%
ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY 2.3% 7TWO 4.1% GO! 3.9% WIN Bold 5.5% VICELAND 2.5%
ABC ME 0.9% 7mate 3.5% GEM 4.6% WIN Peach 2.1% Food Net 0.6%
ABC NEWS 1.5% 7flix (Excl. Tas/WA) 2.2% 9Life 1.8% Sky News  on WIN 2.6% NITV 0.1%
                SBS Movies 1.8%
TOTAL 16.1%   29.1%   27.8%   18.4%   10.4%


87.4% 12.6%
  1. Seven News Seven 1,168,000
  2. Seven News At 6.30 Seven 1,108,000
  3. Nine News Nine 1,072,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 953,000
  5. ABC News ABC 815,000
  6. A Current Affair Nine 706,000
  7. The Chase Australia Seven 675,000
  8. 7.30 ABC 661,000
  9. Home And Away Seven 642,000
  10. Hot Seat Nine 569,000
  11. Emergency Nine 544,000
  12. RBT Nine 544,000
  13. The Weekly With Charlie Pickering ABC 528,000
  14. Julia Zemiro’s Home Delivery ABC 504,000
  15. Rosehaven ABC 496,000
  16. The Project 7pm 10 490,000
  17. America’s Got Talent Seven 456,000
  18. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 422,000
  19. 10 News First 10 387,000
  20. Bondi Rescue 10 347,000
Demo Top 5

16-39 Top Five

  1. Nine News Nine 148,000
  2. Nine News 6:30 Nine 129,000
  3. The Project 7pm 10 128,000
  4. Seven News At 6.30 Seven 124,000
  5. Seven News Seven 112,000


18-49 Top Five

  1. Nine News Nine 279,000
  2. Nine News 6:30 Nine 239,000
  3. Seven News Seven 236,000
  4. Seven News At 6.30 Seven 228,000
  5. The Project 7pm 10 221,000


25-54 Top Five

  1. Nine News Nine 346,000
  2. Nine News 6:30 Nine 305,000
  3. Seven News Seven 295,000
  4. Seven News At 6.30 Seven 285,000
  5. The Project 7pm 10 252,000
WEDNESDAY Multichannel
  1. NCIS (R) 10 Bold 214,000
  2. Bluey AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 176,000
  3. Bluey ABCKIDS/COMEDY 156,000
  4. Digby Dragon AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 149,000
  5. Go Jetters AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 145,000
  6. Little J And Big Cuz AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 142,000
  7. NCIS: Los Angeles (R) 10 Bold 142,000
  8. Neighbours 10 Peach 141,000
  9. Play School AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 138,000
  10. Little J And Big Cuz ABCKIDS/COMEDY 137,000
  11. Noddy Toyland Detective PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 137,000
  12. Bananas In Pyjamas AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 132,000
  13. Peppa Pig PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 132,000
  14. Peter Rabbit PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 131,000
  15. XXX: Return Of Xander Cage 9GO! 120,000
  16. Thomas And Friends PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 114,000
  17. Agatha Raisin 9Gem 114,000
  18. NCIS: Los Angeles Ep 2 (R) 10 Bold 114,000
  19. NCIS: Los Angeles Late (R) 10 Bold 113,000
  20. Spicks And Specks ABCKIDS/COMEDY 111,000
  1. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 92,000
  2. Alan Jones Sky News Live 91,000
  3. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 76,000
  4. Credlin Sky News Live 67,000
  5. PML Later Sky News Live 54,000
  6. Selling Houses Australia Lifestyle Channel 54,000
  7. Quiz BBC First 50,000
  8. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 44,000
  9. Newsday Sky News Live 44,000
  10. Aussie Salvage Squad Discovery Channel 42,000
  11. Live: AFL 360 FOX FOOTY 41,000
  12. The Big Bang Theory FOX Funny 40,000
  13. The Kenny Report Sky News Live 39,000
  14. Live: NRL 360 FOX LEAGUE 37,000
  15. Selling Houses Australia Lifestyle Channel 37,000
  16. Afternoon Agenda Sky News Live 36,000
  17. Am Agenda Sky News Live 35,000
  18. Newsday Sky News Live 34,000
  19. Escape To The Chateau: DIY Lifestyle Channel 33,000
  20. Afternoon Agenda Sky News Live 32,000

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

Publishers look to close and merge print centres in cost saving push

Australia’s largest newspaper publishers are in advanced discussions about shutting some print centres and merging other operations as they look for ways to reduce costs without cutting editorial jobs, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Zoe Samios.

Multiple industry sources who spoke on the condition of anonymity said Nine Entertainment Co (publisher of this masthead), Rupert Murdoch‘s News Corp Australia and Australian Community Media have been in talks for months about redrawing current print partnerships through the potential amalgamation of print centres.

ACM, which is run by real estate entrepreneur Antony Catalano and owned by billionaire investor Alex Waislitz, told staff on Wednesday it was looking at the potential closure of sites in Albury, Ballarat, Canberra and Murray Bridge. News Corp began consulting with Queensland printing staff last week about plans to consolidate two centres weeks after deciding to shut 112 community and regional print newspaper editions.

News Corp and Nine have separate deals with ACM in New South Wales. Nine and News Corp also share resources in Queensland and New South Wales. Sources stressed no new print deals had been signed despite the reviews of print centres underway. News Corp, Nine and ACM declined to comment.

[Read more]

News Brands

ABC rejects Scott Morrison's claim funding 'increasing every year'

The ABC costs the commonwealth half as much as it did in the mid-1990s, managing director David Anderson has said, in a rejection of the prime minister’s claim that ABC funding is increasing every year, reports Guardian Australia’s Amanda Meade.

“In 2018/19, expenditure on the ABC represented around 0.2% of all commonwealth government spending,” Anderson told the National Press Club. “In the mid-1990s the level was around 0.4% – twice as much proportionally as today.”

Anderson said that despite receiving less funding the ABC was doing more across more platforms than ever before.

Anderson said the ABC did not have more than $1bn to spend each year as has been claimed by the government and right-wing critics. Once fixed transmission costs were removed it left $880m of operational funding to spend across all its services after the indexation freeze.

[Read more]

David Anderson: ABC's 7.45am radio bulletin not a 'hostage'

Australian Broadcasting Corporation managing director David Anderson has insisted that the public broadcaster’s axing of its popular 7.45am radio news bulletin was not a politically “punitive” decision aimed at listeners, arguing it would deliver about $2 million of planned $40 million in spending cuts, reports The AFR’s Max Mason.

The ABC and Anderson have been criticised for cutting the bulletin, which critics have claimed was cut to cause anger among Australians towards the government over a budget indexation freeze.

[Read more]

ABC staff demand leaders ensure diversity not 'just a cliché'

ABC staff have written to Ita Buttrose and David Anderson calling on them to ensure that diversity at the national broadcaster “won’t be just a cliché” after cuts, reports Guardian Australia’s Amanda Meade.

Lifestyle portal ABC Life has been slated to lose nine staff in a round of 250 redundancies, and many of the unit’s staff are from non-English speaking backgrounds and relatively young.

In the open letter, which was also addressed to the director of regional and local, Judith Whelan, who runs ABC Life, staff demand the executive maintain a “truly diverse cultural mix” in remaining ABC Life staff and ensure different cultural perspectives are reflected in content-making and commissioning.

Concerns about the ABC’s diversity came a week after SBS staff pleaded with the board to appoint someone other than a white Anglo man as news director to reflect the station’s multicultural charter, and former staff revealed they had been subjected to racism at SBS.

On Wednesday, SBS managing director James Taylor told staff he would appoint two Indigenous elders in residence “to provide support and cultural empowerment to staff” and train a number of “SBS inclusion champions” as part of measures to address the concerns.

[Read more]

ABC joins calls for Facebook and Google to pay for news

ABC managing director David Anderson says the public broadcaster should be paid by Google and Facebook for the content those companies use on their platforms, reports The Australian’s Lilly Vitorovich.

Anderson’s comments come as the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission begins developing a revenue-sharing agreement between the companies and the media industry.

The ABC had, until Anderson’s comments, not become involved in the stoush between the digital giants and the country’s largest media companies News Corp Australia and Nine Entertainment.

“I think it’s entirely appropriate that the ABC receives revenue for the value that it provides to the Australian people,” Anderson told the National Press Club.

“Rather than revenue go to commercial operators because of what we’re doing, I think that it should come to the ABC to reinvest it into public interest journalism.”

[Read more]


‘Snowy’ returns to Triple M Brisbane as Big Breakfast executive producer

The Big Breakfast with Marto, Margaux and Nick Cody has a new executive producer.

“I’m pumped to announce, after a long and exhaustive search with some very experienced applicants, Graham Snow (pictured) will be joining the Triple M team to lead The Big Breakfast with Marto, Margaux and Nick Cody into the next evolution,” said Triple M Brisbane content director, Scott Menz.

“It’s a homecoming for ‘Snowy’ back to the Triple M team and he brings with him a full contact book and insider knowledge hard to beat. He was executive producer for The Cage and The Grill Team Brisbane breakfast shows back in a previous life, and has since ventured into other media, including Fox Sports.”

Snow said: “My time at Fox Sports was truly a fairy tale, from creating a human NRL trophy, to helping Fletch and Hindy survive four days in a bubble tent outside of Suncorp Stadium to being in the ring carrying the Australian flag for the Horn v Mundine fight, I had a ball. Covid-19 brought this time to an end, and if it didn’t, the ducks wouldn’t have aligned for this position.”

“Returning to Triple M really does feel like coming home. Anyone who has been lucky enough to work there will tell you that it really is like a massive family.”

Menz added, “After consolidating our star team, Triple M’s Big Breakfast is locked and loaded for a strong second half of the year. Snowy is geared up and ready to jump in the EP hotseat from July 27, which happens to be our first week into survey.”


The Secrets She Keeps booms on debut in the UK on BBC One

The Australian drama series The Secrets She Keeps, Lingo Pictures’ six-part thriller, has become BBC1’s best Monday night drama launch of year. The audience figure for episode one was 3.1m.

It became BBC1’s biggest new Monday night launch of the year so far – defeating Normal People’s 2.2m which launched in April – and the seventh-highest opener of 2020 when all dramas are considered.

Lingo Pictures’ co-founder and creative director Jason Stephens said: “It’s a thrilling result and hopefully it paves the way for more Australian drama to be shown in such a prestigious prime time slot.”

The UK ratings figures indicate this was “an appointment to view” for people – the program before (Would I Lie to You) had 1.69m viewers and the program after (Staged) 1.56m. The program also skewed younger than the BBC One average, and soon after broadcast, became the most popular program on the BBC iplayer.

The critics had mixed feelings about the series. The Guardian said the “yummy mummy thriller is a guilty, predictable pleasure”. The Telegraph said: “A schlocky, predictable Aussie thriller”.

In a two-star review, The Times said: “If it’s nuance and subtlety you are after, then The Secrets She Keeps is probably not your stop. This is a world of two-dimensional women, one-dimensional men and nail-hammering expositional dialogue.” That’s not a bad thing though as the reviewer added: “It’s trashy and unbelievable…and I want more.”

The Daily Mail said: “The ‘yummy mummy thriller’ that will have you hooked: New BBC drama The Secrets She Keeps about two pregnant women leaves viewers ‘chilled to the bone’ as episode one ends with a dark twist.”

See also: Helen Bowden on making 10’s drama hit The Secrets She Keeps

Mid-year report card: Craig Mathieson’s highs and lows of the year

TV critic for The Age Green Guide Craig Mathieson casts his votes for the best on TV in the first six months of the year:

Best Hosting Reboot: MasterChef (10)

George who? 10’s veteran reality cooking show found a new purpose and fresh energy when established hosts George Calombaris, Matt Preston, and Gary Mehigan stepped aside after the 2019 season and the former’s very public connection to a wage underpayment scandal. Replacements Andy Allen, Melissa Leong, and Jock Zonfrillo, aided by some familiar faces returning as contestants, have reinvigorated the franchise. Still, no spinoffs, please.

Welcome Local Streaming Trend: 7Plus, 9Now, 10Play step up

The streaming platforms for the free-to-air networks have traditionally been dumping grounds for unwanted titles and catch-up havens for broadcast hits. But recently they’ve begun to use their mandate more strategically, whether it’s spotlighting former domestic drama highs such as Love My Way and Tangle, or premiering a range of exclusive new titles. Viewers want options, and now they’re getting them.

Best Drama: Stateless (ABC)

What could easily have been a dull and didactic slog through the state of Australia’s mandatory detention regime instead triumphed as a detailed and intertwined humanistic portrait of the people – on both side of the razor wire – who find themselves trapped in a system designed to break them. The ABC’s standout drama boasted a terrific ensemble cast and strong ambitions it met without losing a whit of vitality.

[Read more]

Sports Media

AFL premiership great gets his own weekly radio show on SEN

Richmond superstar Jack Riewoldt joins SEN from Monday 13 July with his own show Jack Riewoldt’s Tiger Time presented by Swinburne University of Technology.

The two-time premiership player and three-time Coleman Medallist will host a 10-part weekly show on Mondays 6-7pm.

Riewoldt’s existing media agreements see him as a regular on Fox Footy.

In addition to regular segments on the SEN radio show – including Inner Sanctum interviews with key people from the club and Tigers of Old interviews with former club greats – Riewoldt will discuss the Richmond game from the previous round and his other observations from the weekend’s footy including talkback with callers.

“It’s been weird not having fans at our games this season, but I’m sure I’ll hear the Tiger Army loud and clear on Monday nights on SEN,” Riewoldt said.

 “I’m looking forward to chewing the fat with some special guests and chatting with listeners who I expect will have plenty to say each week! Hopefully we can turn on some good footy despite the difficult circumstances of this season and keep the conversation nice!” he added.

Riewoldt’s teammates Tom Lynch and David Astbury are currently studying at Swinburne and will share details of their education journey with listeners on the show.

The show coincides with Swinburne’s launch in August of a new open world, virtual experience – an innovative and immersive experience that will showcase all Swinburne has to offer from courses to clubs and everything in between.

Listen live on 1116 SEN or the SEN App, or download the show podcast.

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