By James Manning
The new media agency body Independent Media Agencies of Australia launched back in late February just before the spread of COVID-19 started to get very serious. The 20 foundation members have quickly blossomed to over 30 with more expected to be added soon.
The not-for-profit association’s members account for more than 25% of advertising expenditure in Australia – around $3b annually.
The founding IMAA members, Dominic Pearman from Pearman Media; Ant Colreavy from Sandbox Media; Dan O’Brien from Frontier Australia; Nick Behr from Kaimera and Sam Buchanan from McKenzie Partners, comprise a five member management committee for the first year.
In the first of a series of profiles looking at the various members, Mediaweek speaks with The Media Store’s CEO Stephen Leeds. The agency is one of the IMAA’s biggest-billing members, and runs offices in Sydney and Melbourne.
Like many companies in all sectors, The Media Store staff are still working from home. Leeds told Mediaweek many of his people are finding that more productive, but not all of them. For Leeds is means more time in Melbourne.
“Prior to COVID-19, I travelled regularly between Melbourne and Sydney, I was probably up there every second week. With Toyota and Lexus as our founding client and our preeminent client, most of my client role is based in Melbourne. Sydney was always important because we still have 20 plus staff in Sydney [around 40 in Melbourne] who either service Toyota at the back end or who work on other clients.
“I’ve read a little bit recently about some businesses who have found this a wonderful experience, and they’re going to change the way they do business. And we’ve found the same, but that’s because we have built such a great culture and great rapport with each other that staff can work from home because they are so familiar with each other.
“But I don’t think that is sustainable in the long run as you bring onboard new people and new clients. I will always be an advocate for a level of being in the same environment.”
Leeds has been with The Media Store just on three years. “In that time the structure and the strategy has changed with a focus on, I would say, contemporising our business for the benefit of Toyota first and foremost. Secondly, there has been more of a focus on new business. Our strategy for the business has just been a reinforcement of what we call customer intimacy, which is certainly client service at the heart of what we do.
“When I joined I did a bit of homework and some people didn’t know who The Media Store was. We didn’t have a strong profile nationally. Some who did know the name thought that we were Toyota’s exclusive agency. Others thought Toyota had a financial stake in our business. So I made it a priority that we wanted to communicate that Toyota is a foundation client that we’re very proud of what we’ve done with them for 23 years. We are proud to be their media agency of choice, but that we could apply our skills to any business.”
As to the challenges of running the agency during COVID-19, Leeds said working with media partners has been manageable. “The interaction with the media has not been tricky. The fulfilment of contracts, or the negotiation within contracts, has not been tricky at all. We are a people business however, and once again, I think because of the great rapport we’ve built with media over the journey has helped. I do look forward to the day where we can reconnect with all publishers face to face in some capacity. That’s because we’ve built great relationships and I think in order to protect and preserve those relationships, I do look forward to the day where we reconnect again face to face for proactive selling, for relationship building and for communication purposes.”
“The consumer has become more comfortable with e-commerce. They’ve had more time to spend online.
“Can traditional media sustain viewability, listenership, readership? Once we get back to a new normal or get back to normal I can see a drop off, no doubt. But I also see a drop off with time spent with digital media.
“It’s the time that people have got available and they’re working rhythms that has increased participation with all forms of media. But I think the confidence in digital media will see a continuation of the engagement, interaction and time spent.
“My view is how do brands continue to capitalise on either a new found interaction or how do they capitalise on new engagement and continuing with live metrics of where the audience is? That’s what it’s about – we just follow the audiences and that’s the challenge for any brand.”
“The ability to attract staff to an independent model versus the other demonstrates that staff are seeking out the independent model because they like it and see benefits in it.
“We do support the Media Federation too [as an MFA member]. We want to be seen as just a reputable agency that can do a great job for our clients and we don’t really play the independent thing. The reason we joined the IMAA was that as an MFA member we saw an opportunity to support other like-minded businesses. We liked the idea of collaboration, where it didn’t breach any confidentiality boundaries, and we really liked the idea of a global alignment.
“As an independent who believes they can do anything a global agency can do, there was one area that we felt there was maybe a misconception and that is that we weren’t globally aligned, or we couldn’t globally tap into resources and thinking. Thenetworkone partnership has provided another way that the independents could match any agency in that forum. I’ve got to say we have been very impressed with the communication within the IMAA. We’ve been very impressed with thenetworkone global alliance communication, and I’ve been very impressed with the amount of PR that the IMAA has been able to generate, including the support of all traditional and digital, large and small publishers.”
GroupM has released its mid-year forecast for global ad spend which also contains some numbers for the Australian market.
The executive summary is that for 2020 the forecast for Australia is a decline of 19% in overall adspend. But that will bounce back in 2021 said GroupM, with the forecast of a rise of 25% in adspend.
Here are some of the highlights:
During 2020, we estimate that the global advertising economy will fall by 11.8%, excluding the effects of increased political advertising in the U.S. This is a sharp decline from the growth rate from 2019 of 6.2% and returns the industry to slightly higher than 2017 levels in constant currency terms.
While severe to be sure, 2020’s decline can still be considered “modest” given the scale of the impact of the pandemic on global GDP, which will fall by much more than it did in the 2009 global financial crisis. During that year, when GDP declined by 1%, we estimate that global advertising fell by 11.2% in nominal terms.
Including U.S. political advertising, we estimate global advertising will decline by 9.9% in 2020. The median market should decline by more, or 12.2%, which in part reflects that declines are less pronounced in the world’s top two advertising markets, the U.S. (expected to fall 7.5% including political advertising) and China (expected to fall 2.8%). These two combine to account for more than half of the world’s total advertising activity.
Among other top 10 markets from 2019, we expect to see the following rates of decline:
• Japan: 20%
• United Kingdom: 12.5%
• Germany: 9.9%
• France: 15%
• Canada: 5.1%
• Brazil: 29.1%
• South Korea: 1.8%
• Australia: 19%
The only multi-billion-dollar market where we expect to see real growth this year is in Indonesia, where expectations are for 5.8% growth. Argentina is the only other market expected to grow in nominal terms, although it should decline on an inflation-adjusted basis.
2021 Forecast: Growth
Among the top 10 markets, most expect to see double-digit growth including Japan (15%), the U.K. (12.6%), Germany (10.6%), Brazil (15.0%) and Australia (25.2%). Meanwhile, Canada and South Korea anticipate low single digit gains while France anticipates high single digit growth during 2021.
How media sectors will fare (Figures US$)
Digital Extensions: We are introducing estimates of “digital extensions,” digital advertising associated with traditional media. These figures are broken out to show the degree to which traditional and digital advertising overlap within individual media types.
We estimate, in 2020, digital extensions of TV, radio, print and outdoor advertising should equate to $31 billion, or 13% of total advertising activity (up from $22 billion, or 7%, five years ago). Digital extensions are most pronounced in the outdoor sector, where they account for $9 billion this year, or 31% of the total outdoor sector’s activities. Digital extensions of traditional television equate to $12 billion this year, 9% of that medium’s total.
Digital Advertising: expected to decline by 2.3% during 2020. This follows nearly a decade of double-digit growth, with many years exceeding 20% at a global level.
During 2020, digital advertising will have a 52% share of media captured, up from 48% in 2019 and 44% in 2018. Share growth should abate somewhat going forward, adding 1-2% each year. Our new estimates also break out search from non-search digital advertising, with search accounting for $109 billion in revenue during 2020, falling 2.6%. Other forms of digital advertising that account for $172 billion (excluding digital extensions of traditional media) will fall by less, or 0.6% this year.
Television Advertising: expected to decline by 17.6% in 2020, ex-U.S. political advertising, before rebounding slightly to grow 5.9% next year.
Digital extensions and related media, including advertising associated with traditional media owners’ streaming activities, as well as Hulu, Roku, etc., will fare much better, with growth of +3.7% this year and +11.3% next year – around 9% of total TV spending this year.
Television’s share of advertising, if we define TV including its digital extensions, is expected to be 27% during 2020, down from approximately 37% 10 years ago.
OOH Advertising: expected to decline by 25.0%, including digital out-of-home media but, next year, we should see a partial rebound with 14.9% growth.
Beyond 2021, we expect outdoor advertising to grow by low or mid-single digits and generally lose share of total advertising, although we do expect larger brands to generally increase their allocations of budgets to the medium.
Commercial radio’s average weekly metro audiences have climbed by 7.1% to nearly 12 million people during the past four weeks, as coronavirus restrictions have eased, according to a GfK Radio Pulse e-diary survey released today.
The research shows commercial radio listeners are up by 786,000 people per week, compared to the second official radio survey of the year that was released in April.
Commercial radio reached 82.4% of Australians in the latest study, compared to 76.9% in Survey 2 and an average of 77.3% for all of 2019.
The GfK Radio Pulse survey was commissioned by industry body Commercial Radio Australia to provide data to the market while the official radio surveys are on hold due to the impacts of COVID-19.
CRA chief executive officer Joan Warner said the survey was good news for the industry.
“Listener numbers increased throughout the day, with breakfast up 1.5%, drive up 5.5% and the afternoon daypart (midday to 4pm) attracting an average weekly audience of nearly 8 million people – the kind of figures usually reserved for breakfast,” Warner said
“Listening at home continues to be well above trend. Nearly 65% of people listened at home each week and 59% listened in the car.”
The GfK Radio Pulse also highlighted a spike in weekend listeners, with commercial radio reaching a cumulative audience of nearly 10 million from Saturday to Sunday, a rise of 17% compared to Survey 2*.
The survey was in-field from May 17 to June 13. Victoria announced people were able to leave their homes for recreational purposes from May 13 and in New South Wales and Queensland from May 15.
Each metro city saw increases in commercial radio listeners – in Sydney, the cumulative weekly audience was up 343,000 compared to Survey 2. Melbourne audiences increased by 175,000, Brisbane by 77,000, Adelaide by 71,000 and Perth by 120,000.
Across the age groups, commercial radio reached on average 92% of 10-17 year-olds each week, 78% of 18-24’s, 81% of 25-39’s, 84% of 40-54’s, 84% of 55-64’s and 79% of those aged 65 and over.
The GfK Radio Pulse involved a representative sample of 2,240 participants who reported their radio listening for each quarter hour via an e-diary using a computer, smartphone or tablet. This differs from the standard radio survey methodology, which comprises a larger sample size, with 70% of participants using paper diaries placed in households and 30% completing an e-diary.
The official radio surveys will resume with Survey 6, which will be in field from July 26 to September 19, with results to be released on September 29.
Source: GfK Radio Pulse, June 2020, People 10+, Mon-Sun 5.30am-12mn, Cumulative Audience, unless otherwise stated. Place of listening figures are based on Mon-Sun 12mn-12mn, *Weekend figures 12mn-12mn Sat-Sun. Figures are compared to GfK Radio Ratings Survey 2 2020, SMBAP, People 10+, Mon-Sun 5:30am-12mn, Cumulative Audience, unless otherwise stated.
Triple M’s No Talk Day will return on Wednesday July 1, 2020 from 6:00am – 6:00pm to raise awareness of men’s mental health, with partner Beyond Blue.
The inaugural No Talk Day was held in 2019 across four metro markets and will now expand out across 43 Triple M stations around Australia.
There will be no radio shows, no ads, no news, no traffic reports and no announcers on air. No Talk Day is designed to use the space where there is normally talk to encourage people to start their own conversations about mental health.
Triple M will share helpful tips for those who may not be ready to talk yet; things like staying active, minimising alcohol intake and efforts to reduce stress. Triple M have also created an online resource, working with Beyond Blue, with tools and tips on starting the difficult conversation. The resource will be shared online and across Triple M’s social media accounts.
Triple M hosts from around the country have banded together to promote this cause, recording powerful videos to feature across Triple M’s online and social platforms.
“We’re encouraging Aussie men and women to look after their mental health, and on July 1 we will stop talking to encourage you to start your own conversation,” Triple M Head, Mike Fitzpatrick, said.
“We know that men in particular find it hard to talk about their feelings. As a network that talks to a lot of Aussie men we feel it’s our responsibility to continue to encourage these men to be more aware of not only their own feelings but those of the people around them.
“It’s been a challenging time for everyone. From dealing with bushfires to drought and more recently the issues that COVID-19 has created, there’s never been a more important time to check in on family and mates.
“We are lucky to be able to partner with an organisation like Beyond Blue to help empower our community and continue to break down the stigma surrounding mental health.”
Tune into Triple M’s No Talk Day, from 6:00am – 6:00pm Wednesday July 1, on your local Triple M FM station or via the Triple M app. To get advice on how to start a conversation with someone you’re worried about or for more information on depression and anxiety, please visit: www.beyondblue.org.au
Screen Queensland and Wattpad have announced a new partnership to develop TV and film projects. The deal is the first-of-its-kind for Wattpad in Australia, bringing the two companies together to leverage global audience insights, machine learning, and stand-out stories from emerging writers to create hit projects for screens all over the world.
The companies will use Wattpad’s Story DNA Machine Learning technology to identify stand-out stories for development from the more than half a billion uploads on the platform. The partnership will also allow the companies to use data-backed audience insights throughout the development process.
Screen Queensland and Wattpad will select up to three successful stories from the Wattpad platform and ask Queensland screen industry creatives to submit their ‘take’.
Writers will provide a pitch outlining how they plan to translate the story to screen. From trailers to pilots, or entirely new ways of bringing stories to screen, Queensland creatives can submit any original idea that will best interpret the story and demonstrate their vision for a film and TV adaptation. Up to three concepts will be selected for further development with the input and feedback of the Wattpad platform audience over the next 12 months, with the intention of identifying a project to secure marketplace backing so that it can move into production in Queensland.
“Screen Queensland is delighted to be working with global, creative-tech leader Wattpad in an Australian-first partnership, which will give Queensland’s creative talent access to stories that have already found a passionate audience on the Wattpad platform and the opportunity to adapt them for the screen with the guidance of their global fan base,” said Jo Dillon, Screen Queensland’s executive vice president, content. “Wattpad and Wattpad Studios are unafraid of bold ideas and approaches and we’re excited to see what will come out of this unique collaboration.”
“As a company that works with studios and producers across the region, Screen Queensland understands the importance of tapping into incredible new voices and creating opportunities for diverse creators,” said Aron Levitz, head of Wattpad Studios. “We’re thrilled to partner with Screen Queensland and work together to bring an innovative, data-backed model for entertainment to Australia.”
Screen Queensland joins some of the most innovative studios and entertainment companies in the world in working with Wattpad to identify diverse new voices and stories for development, while embracing innovative new models and technologies to create TV shows and films.
Wattpad currently works with companies like Sony Pictures Television, eOne, Erik Feig’s Picturestart, Bavaria Fiction, Mediaset, Lagardere Studios, Wise Entertainment, Turner LatAm’s Particular Crowd, and many more. The company has nearly 50 projects in development, including TV and film adaptations of hit stories like The Hound, What Happened That Night, She’s with Me, The Last She, Death is My BFF, The Numbered, Kairos, Along for the Ride, and Slow Dancing among others.
Photos:Images from Wattpad feature film After
At the Seven Upfront in October, Seven announced the return of the most successful dating show in Australian TV history in Farmer Wants a Wife.
With nine marriages and 19 babies in Australia (with another on the way) and 147 marriages and 280 babies worldwide. The show is back with a new crop of single farmers who are ready to find their soulmate.
Seven’s director of production Andrew Backwell told Mediaweek earlier this month about the production of Farmer Wants a Wife: “It has all been delivered and starts on air soon. We are very happy with the way it has come up. It is almost an antidote to Married at First Sight. It offers genuine love affairs, a bit of Mills & Boon. We genuinely want the relationships to work. It is about going back to basics and helping couples finding true love.”
Seven has also revealed its first Farmer and prospective husband for Farmer Wants a Wife:
“Farmer Harry, 29, farms grapes, cotton and sheep in Goolgowi, New South Wales and he’s ready to get his “little bit of romantic on!”
The small-town country boy with a big heart enjoys a simple life on the farm and prides himself on being respectful and loyal.
Harry says he’d be a supportive husband and a ‘red hot’ dad.
Will Farmer Harry find the love of his life?”
The first trailer for Farmer Wants a Wife gives viewers a glimpse into the high and lows of Harry’s pursuit for love as he looks “for someone to share these flies with”. We also see the prospective wives taken to a series of breathtaking scenes in country Australia. The sneak peek also hints at drama as Harry is shown in several romantic situations with multiple women, and describes his circumstances as “quite a pickle”.
Farmer Wants a Wife is a Fremantle and Eureka co-production for Channel Seven.
Independent distributor all3media international has signed an exclusive volume deal in Australia with reality SVOD, hayu.
Hayu Australia now exclusively offers all eight series of USA Network’s acclaimed Chrisley Knows Best, plus reality favourite – The Only Way is Essex (Towie).
The deal sees hayu exclusively secure Chrisley Knows Best, the long-running show produced by Maverick Television and all3media America for the USA Network. Seven series – totalling 212 episodes – have been acquired, plus the recently announced new eighth series.
Chrisley Knows Best follows the lives of American multi-millionaire entrepreneur Todd Chrisley, his wife Julie and their five children. Atlanta’s finest family patriarch accepts nothing but the best, and it’s become a full-time job for Todd to micro-manage his family.
hayu Australia has also licensed the latest series of Lime Pictures’ BAFTA-winning The Only Way is Essex. Offering a unique take on life east of London, reality sensation “Towie” has become a favourite globally, with a loyal fanbase in Australia.
Julie Dowding, SVP Australia, New Zealand at all3media international, commented, “We’re very pleased to see the Chrisley clan find their perfect home in Australia as Chrisley Knows Best arrives there on hayu, as well as the ever-popular Towie, returning with all the latest goings-on from Essex. With all episodes available, Chrisley Knows Best offers ideal content for on-demand viewing, giving fans the chance to fully experience Todd’s unique style of parenting as they immerse themselves in the lives of this colourful and entertaining family.”
“We’re thrilled to provide our subscribers with more top-quality content through this licensing deal withall3media international,” said Hendrik McDermott, Managing Director of hayu and SVP, Branded On-Demand, NBCUniversal International. “Over the course of four years in market, hayu has enjoyed steady subscriber growth proving that Aussies crave reality TV. And, with our investment in more than 300 shows and 8,000 episodes, hayu remains the premier destination for all the best reality TV, all in one place.”
Seven continues on a mid-year revival driven by the same mix of winners it had last week. As we have noted before Big Brother on its own isn’t a winner other than in the younger demos.
However when mixed with Seven’s other programming strengths – breakfast, late afternoon, news and sport it makes a big difference to overall performance.
For week 25 the broadcaster has been able to claim Seven Network and Channel Seven wins 25-54, 16-39 and all people.
Nine was back in second place with a second successive week of primary share under 18%, its only two weeks of the year that low.
Less MasterChef has impacted 10’s share with the numbers down from six successive weeks over 14% to 12.1% for the primary channel last week.
A second winning week has seen year-on-year growth at the primary channel with 25-54 up 10.3% and 16-39 up 7.9%.\
In the key 25-54 demo Seven had six of the top 10 shows. Home and Away was TV’s #1 drama and Better Homes and Gardens was #1 lifestyle.
Outside of primetime Sunrise and The Chase continued their winning streaks.
Primary all people 20.1% (Last week 22.0%)
Network all people 29.5% (31.1%)
Multichannels 7TWO 3.4% (3.4%) 7mate 4.0% (4.2%) 7flix 2.1% (1.5%)
The Voice was able to claim #1 entertainment show for the week when using national numbers. However in metro markets MasterChef had the top three entertainment programs.
60 Minutes had a great week with an audience just short of 800,000 with its investigations into allegations of branch stacking by Adem Somyurek.
Primary all people 17.9% (Last week 17.4%)
Network all people 26.6% (26.0%)
Multichannels GO! 2.9% (2.9%), Gem 2.5% (2.5%), 9Life 2.0% (1.9%), 9Rush 1.3% (1.3%)
Only three episodes of MasterChef but the metro audiences were all close to 950,000 ranking the franchise #1 entertainment property of the week as the show won key demos.
Next best was Have You Been Paying Attention? which climbed back to 800,000.
Primary all people 12.1% (Last week 13.1%)
Network all people 18.6% (19.0%)
Multichannels 10 Bold 4.1% (3.7%), 10 Peach 2.4% (2.1%)
After 7pm News and 7.30, five other programs averaged over half a million during the week – Back Roads (682,000), Four Corners (531,000), Gardening Australia (530,000), The Weekly (513,000) and Media Watch (503,000).
Primary all people 12.1% (Last week 11.3%)
Network all people 16.8% (15.7%)
Multichannels Kids/Comedy 2.7% (2.7%), News 1.5% (1.4%), ME 0.4% (0.5%)
Who Do You Think You Are? was up slightly as the week’s best to 352,000.
Tony Robinson’s World by Rail was the other show over 300,000 with 325,000.
Primary all people 4.8% (Last week 4.8%)
Network all people 8.6% (8.3%)
Multichannels Viceland 1.3% (1.2%), Food 1.1% (1.1%), NITV 0.3% (0.2%), World Movies 1.0% (1.0%)
By James Manning
• Nine wins thanks to music Monday: The Voice & Home Front
• Seven lifts week-on-week with Big Brother & 9-1-1 double
• MasterChef’s finest win timeslot in two-part immunity battle
Seven News 1,186,000/1,149,000
Nine News 1,091,000/1,028,000
ABC News 836,000
A Current Affair 762,000
The Project 385,000/633,000
10 News 438,000/274,000
The Drum 240,000
News Breakfast 215,000
SBS World News 173,000
Seven: A much better Monday week-on-week with primary share up 17.5% to 19.4%.
Both parts of Big Brother were over 700,000 after being close to 650,000 a week ago.
A double dose of 9-1-1 didn’t hurt either with audiences of 380,000 and then 305,000.
Nine: The Voice went from 939,000 a week ago to 861,000 last night. Feuding coaches seemed to have caused as much confusion as watercooler chat. The show did however perform well enough to keep Nine #1 all people.
An encore screening of Music from the Home Front did 333,000. The audience on Saturday night back in week 17 was 815,000.
10: Callum, Poh and Laura successfully navigated a Mystery Box challenge and landed a spot in Tuesdays MasterChef immunity challenge. The episode performed well with 951,000 which is bang on where the three episodes from last week all rated. The show helped 10 to successive nights over a 16% primary share, its best start to the week in seven weeks.
Have You Been Paying Attention? dipped slightly after 801,000 a week ago to 787,000.
The numbers last night allowed 10 to claim #1 channel and network in key demos.
ABC: Guest presenter Lisa Millar presented a Back Roads COVID-19 special episode about how a community comes together when the heart of the town is not able to beat. That community was Rokewood and the episode was on 607,000 after 682,000 a week ago.
Four Corners then did 456,000 with an episode about how the coronavirus ravaged the elderly care home Newmarch House.
Media Watch was again close to half a million with 492,000.
Q+A lifted from 237,000 to 304,000 week-on-week.
SBS: Secrets of Royal Travel kept the timeslot over 200,000, just, with 205,000.
Double episodes of 24 Hours in Emergency followed with 144,000 for the new ep and then 148,000 for the repeat.
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.3%||7TWO||3.0%||GO!||1.9%||10 Bold||3.9%||VICELAND||1.3%|
|ABC ME||0.4%||7mate||2.9%||GEM||2.1%||10 Peach||2.0%||Food Net||1.2%|
|9Rush||1.2%||SBS World Movies||0.4%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||10 Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.2%||7TWO||4.6%||GO!||2.4%||WIN Bold||4.8%||VICELAND||1.3%|
|ABC ME||0.7%||7mate||4.8%||GEM||3.9%||WIN Peach||2.0%||Food Net||0.8%|
|ABC NEWS||1.0%||7flix (Excl. Tas/WA)||1.4%||9Life||1.8%||Sky News on WIN||1.8%||NITV||0.2%|
|MONDAY METRO ALL TV|
16-39 Top Five
18-49 Top Five
25-54 Top Five
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
No one was ready for 2020. None of us was really prepared for the bushfires, or coronavirus, or the fear and uncertainty about what these crises mean for our families and our lives, writes Guardian Australia editor Lenore Taylor (pictured) in a pitch to readers to become a financial supporter.
Like everyone – from frontline health workers to the cafe owners with no customers – we adapted. I scrambled to figure out how to lead a news organisation via Zoom from a desk in the corner of my bedroom. Reporters conducted interviews online or shouted questions from across the street to the newly unemployed on the Centrelink queues that were suddenly snaking along city blocks.
We thought hard about how best to serve our readers who we knew were scared and potentially overwhelmed by information. From kitchen tables and home offices and makeshift bedroom desks across the country we ran a seven-days-a-week live blog to keep pace with the rapidly changing story, and used summaries, explainers and a data tracker to give readers quick access to the information they needed. We tried to avoid the sensational, to stay focused on facts. We questioned what we were told. We found new ways to talk to readers, Zoom-facilitated book clubs, and roundups of all the joy available online when our worlds contracted to our homes.
We set up Guardian Australia seven years ago to create a new independent, influential source of reliable Australian news because we believed a diversity of news voices was something a healthy democracy needed. That need is now bigger than before and, with the support of our readers, we intend to find a way to meet it. The vicissitudes of 2020 prove, once again, that the alternative is unthinkable.
Guardian Australia has set a goal of growing its community to 150,000 supporters. As of today the publisher has 142,664 supporters.
In May, the Daily Mail sold more print copies per day than The Sun making it the top-selling daily newspaper in the UK for the first time in 42 years, reports Press Gazette.
It is a massive achievement for Mail editor Geordie Greig and his team and it means that while the Mail’s circulation was down 17% year-on-year that month, The Sun fell even further.
The year-on-year decline is severe, but taking a glass-is-half-full approach to the figures it is impressive that the Mail sold nearly a million copies per day in the midst of lockdown and the collapse of the UK economy.
The Sun stopped releasing a public ABC figure last month, so we literally don’t know how many copies it sold in May.
The Mail sees The Sun’s figures so was able to cheekily trumpet success on Friday night. But it is not allowed to share The Sun’s numbers and News UK is tight-lipped on what they actually are.
The Daily Mail sales figures:
960,613 paid single copies
10,335 paid subscriptions
8,888 foreign sales
66,951 digital editions
Comedian and broadcaster Michael Hing knows racists aren’t going to watch his series, Where Are You Really From? reports News Corp’s Wenlei Ma.
The SBS docuseries returns for its third season on Tuesday, with Hing and his crew taking viewers into migrant communities around the country, telling their stories of hardship and hope, and how they too are part of the Australian story.
But Hing understands there’s a certain kind of viewer who are predisposed to a TV show like Where Are You Really From?
“I don’t kid myself,” he told news.com.au. “I don’t think I’m going to convince any racists not to racists by putting out this show. I don’t think hardcore racists are watching SBS.
“The reality is, the people who are probably going to watch this show probably already have a sympathetic mind towards this kind of show. That’s why they’re tuning in.”
Where Are You Really From? starts on SBS and SBS On Demand on Tuesday, June 23 at 9.30pm
Television presenter Ryan Phelan was charged on Monday night with assault occasioning bodily harm against his live-in girlfriend Chelsea Franklin, reports News Corp’s Mark Morri.
Phelan agreed to be interviewed by detectives and presented himself at Manly Police Station just after 8pm over the alleged assault of Franklin, a ballet teacher, on Saturday night.
He had agreed to a police request to be interviewed after he was contacted and told of the allegations.
Phelan is scheduled to appear in court over the incident on June 30.
It comes after it was announced late last week that Phelan’s Channel Seven program The Daily Edition was being axed.
In a memo sent to staff internally, the network’s director of News and Public Affairs Craig McPherson attributed the decision to “these difficult times”.
The final episode of The Daily Edition will air on Friday.
Melissa Leong says her collection of cookbooks “are front and centre in our house and life”, reports News Corp’s Dan Stock.
“Our shelves are groaning with the amount of cookbooks, it’s scary,” she laughs.
“We have an open plan kitchen and living space so it’s really easy to go between the cookbook shelf and kitchen if we’re referencing something.”
Having ghost written a number of cookbooks, including chef Dan Hong’s Mr Hong, the MasterChef judge says there is a wealth of knowledge contained within the different styles of cookbooks in the home she shares with husband, chef-turned-barman Joe Jones.
Leong says using cookbooks is a great way to gain confidence in the kitchen and “once you’ve got a good foundation of knowledge, you can make recipes your own”.
“You can Frankenstein a different mix of recipes (to create a dish). You don’t have to follow every recipe to the letter.”
Former Footy Show great Sam Newman is refusing to back away from his comments about George Floyd, which led to the end of his three-decade relationship with Channel 9, reports News Corp’s Fiona Byrne, Jackie Epstein and Kara Irving.
Newman told the Herald Sun he had no regrets over what had unfolded last week, and stuck to his guns during an interview on 3AW this morning.
“I am 100% right on what I said about the two matters that caused some controversy,” he said.
“I think there’s a communal strain of syphilis infecting the grievance brigade and the activists who just will not bother to listen to what I say.”
Newman rejected claims he’d been ‘unfair’ and wasn’t ashamed of anything he’d done in his 35-year TV career.
“You could be ashamed on plenty of things people do in life but there’s no point being ashamed because you don’t get a chance to resolve or right it, so it’s pointless saying so,” he said.
When asked by 3AW’s Neil Mitchell whether he left Channel 9 because of a staff complaint, rather than public uproar over the comments, Newman said: “I’m sure there probably has (been a staff complaint made about him)”.
Fans could begin to question the legitimacy of the season and broadcasters could seek a further reduction in rights fees if more AFL matches are postponed or cancelled, according to a leading sports media analyst, reports The Age’s Jon Pierik.
The importance of completing a 17-round season plus finals to fulfil the AFL’s broadcast obligations was underlined by Global Media and Sports boss Colin Smith, who said it was paramount that fans remained invested in the season.
The slated clash between Essendon and Melbourne at the MCG last Sunday was postponed after Bombers speedster Conor McKenna tested positive to coronavirus. A rescheduled date has yet to be set, while McKenna’s diagnosis has also put Saturday night’s marquee – and high-rating – clash between the Bombers and an improving Carlton in doubt.
The Bombers could lose more players to quarantine if they are deemed close contacts of McKenna.
“Does that put under question this season for the AFL? I am not saying that is the case but it depends on the fans,” said Smith, also pointing to the concerns the unhappy West Coast Eagles are facing in their Gold Coast hub.
Sunday afternoon’s clash was to have been shown on Channel Seven and would have enjoyed bumper ratings in Melbourne but the free-to-air broadcaster instead had no choice but to take the less appealing match between the Gold Coast Suns and slumping Adelaide Crows.
The match attracted 319,000 viewers nationally, including 243,000 metro, which is relatively healthy given it was not shown in Sydney or Perth. By comparison, the round two clash between Sydney and Essendon in the same slot a week earlier had 621,000 viewers nationally and 445,000 metro when broadcast on Seven across the country.
The economic outlook might be fractious and the post-2021 broadcast outlook shrouded in mystery, but that has not daunted the spirits of those involved with Team 11’s A-League bid, reports The Age’s Michael Lynch.
As existing clubs look to tighten their belts and slash costs, and players confront the likelihood of significant wage cuts through a reduced broadcast dividend, ambitious clubs outside the top tier still harbour dreams of playing at the highest level in the Australian domestic game.
Team 11 isn’t actually a club yet but the group, based in and around Dandenong and Melbourne’s burgeoning south eastern suburbs, believes it has the support to relaunch another A-League bid if that opportunity comes, or to be part of a national second division when one is introduced.
And the most recent developments, with the FFA and A-League clubs having hammered out an 11th hour agreement for the competition to resume in mid-July, and for the beleaguered broadcaster to continue showing the competition at a reduced rate for the 2020-21 season, have only reinforced the hope that the time will come.
Team 11 co-ordinator Matt Windley said if it does, the group, which bank-rolled the original bid but lost out to Western United in the last round of A-League expansion, is ready to go again.