• ‘We will emerge from this a stronger and more competitive company’
No media company has yet to spell out exactly how much a hit revenue is expected to take. Some have talked about the foggy future and the difficulty of forecasting future revenues which makes predictions impossible.
Nine further updated the market yesterday with operational initiatives in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With regard to revenues, Nine explained to the ASX and the JP Morgan Virtual Conference: Consistent with Nine’s release of 19th March 2020, group revenues in Q3 were in line with previous guidance. However, the advertising market is increasingly uncertain with likely material negative impact from April.
Nine also reported how it has managed to stay operation yet safeguard the health of its staff: Nine has successfully transitioned the majority of its workforce to work at home with minimal interruption. Notwithstanding, Nine’s crucial newsrooms across the country remain open and will continue to provide premium news coverage to all Australians.
For advertisers contemplating halting their messaging, Nine pointed out: Audiences across all of Nine’s platforms are showing strong growth, including linear audience growth on core news and current affairs content – Nine News (+30%), A Current Affair (+13%) and the Today show (+26%) vs levels recorded in late February-early March, as well as across Nine’s digital mast-heads.
The company added both Stan and 9Now are reporting accelerating growth in active subscribers/users and usage.
In response to the current global crisis, Nine said it is focused on major short and long-term cost initiatives across all of its businesses, as well as expediting part of the $100m, 3-year linear cost out that was announced with Nine’s interim results in February.
The table below broadly highlights the first round of these initiatives, premised on the crisis continuing for the duration of calendar 2020. Any earlier (or later) recovery will change the magnitude and/or timing of these metrics, with a prolonged economic impact likely to result in further initiatives.
The chart reveals that if the 2020 NRL season is cancelled, the company will save $130m – $65 in this financial year and $65m in the next.
As detailed in the ASX release dated 31 January 2020, Nine recently completed the refinancing of its corporate debt facilities. The new facilities comprise (equally) 3 and 4 year revolving cash advance facilities of $545 million and a one year $80 million working capital facility. As of today, Nine retains undrawn debt and cash of around $300m.
Nine’s CEO Hugh Marks said, “This is a very difficult time for all Australians, on many levels. Notwithstanding an expected significant impact on our business as conditions continue to evolve, we are confident that with our enhanced audience position, our mix of assets and the commitment of the Nine team, we will emerge from this period a stronger and more competitive company.”
A new streaming service dedicated to Australian business and finance is finally available free, live and on demand. The channel officially announced its intention to launch this month last October. It met the deadline….just.
A statement about the arrival of the channel was released after a successful test stream on Twitter during Monday market hours:
Located at International Towers in Sydney’s Barangaroo Precinct, ausbiz provides live rolling coverage of the Australian sharemarket, along with expert analysis and commentary across a broad range of investment opportunities.
The ausbiz iOS app and website provides a personalised experience based on the user’s investment preferences.
“While we could never have predicted the global impact of the coronavirus, the team has been working incredibly hard to get this ready, as we believe a live business service dedicated to Australia is needed now more than ever,” said ausbiz founder, Kylie Merritt.
Executive chairman of ausbiz, David Koch, said: “Whether you’re running a business or managing your personal investments, this is not the time to panic and make decisions based on rumour and speculation. What Australians need right now is credible, sensible information and ausbiz will bring that to TV, with access to the expertise and experience of people who’ve managed through past crises.”
Partnering with ausbiz to provide real-time Australian equity and ETF data is innovative stock exchange, Chi-X Australia.
Domestic data, along with in-depth research, international equities, indices, currencies and commodities is provided to ausbiz viewers via leading Australian financial technology provider Iress.
Also partnering with ausbiz to provide the connectivity to power reliable video streaming is Vocus.
Twitter users can also stream live coverage of the Australian market open from 10am AEDT.
At launch, ausbiz is live 10am-4.15pm AEDT Monday through Friday with video on-demand available 24/7. From April 14th the live stream will begin at 8.30am for comprehensive coverage of Australian market announcements.
A daily startup program, produced in partnership with Startup Daily, will launch later in the month.
Top Image: Kylie Merritt and David Koch
By James Manning
• Theme nights revealed, new Top Gear at last, more for 9Now too
The renegotiation by Foxtel of its major content partnerships has opened up opportunities for broadcasters to acquire programming either no longer needed by the subscription TV platform or series Foxtel no longer has exclusive rights to.
One of those beneficiaries is Nine who has added a number of series from various global production studios for either its suite of FTA channels or the growing 9Now library.
Nine was already a partner with Discovery for its 9Life channel, and that relationship is expanding significantly with Discovery entering into a JV with Nine on the new 9Rush FTA multichannel targeting young males. Nine will operate the channel and represent ad sales and Discovery will act as the primary content partner.
Nine’s program director Hamish Turner told Mediaweek Nine had been in discussions for some time with Discovery about the JV. The revamped Foxtel contract with Discovery confirmed the opportunity.
“Hugh Marks saw this as a good opportunity to access an audience that we currently don’t cater for within our suite of channels,” said Turner. “Men 25 to 40 are very hard to get to outside of live sport. Discovery is world class in terms of producing this content with much that can sit in the schedule and deliver theme nights across all days of the week.
“It was about guaranteeing an audience for the advertisers, and creating a clearly defined brand.”
It’s not a bad time to launch a channel, Turned explained: “Somewhat fortuitously, it’s kind of like the perfect storm in a kind of imperfect world at the moment: More people at home, no sport, Easter break, perfect opportunity to launch a channel like this.”
Nine had been exploring the different alternatives of what it could build with its unused bandwidth.
“We were having discussions with multiple partners around what the opportunities were. A lot of distributors all around the world are looking to break away from pay TV, or at least diversify their offering and access that free audience. Behind that paywall [in Australia] you only get to 30% of the audience maximum, so the great thing for us is there’s thousands of hours that hasn’t been exposed to 70% of the population.”
Turner explained that the JV doesn’t stipulate that all the content has to come from Discovery.
“The deal allows us utilise other content that sits within the world of Discovery, and when I say the world of Discovery, content that makes sense next to the Discovery content, something like Top Gear.”
9Rush has two series of the new look Top Gear which has been rating well in the UK with new hosts Paddy McGuinness and Freddie Flintoff joining Chris Harris. Turner said he expects the new channel will show both series back-to-back.
Turner: “The series has had a bit of a renaissance in the UK. With Freddie Flintoff they’ve found the right combination. There was a couple of years it was in the wilderness, but the numbers are growing season-on-season and it’s back at really healthy levels in the UK.”
The Top Gear connection works well for Nine with Flintoff also working on Australian Ninja Warrior. He made it down under for the recording earlier this month, and is now safely back home with the family in the UK.
Theme nights on 9Rush
Sunday: Car night with Top Gear plus Salvage Hunters featuring British treasure hunter Drew Pritchard.
Monday: Gold night on 9Rush – Gold Rush and Bering Sea Gold.
Tuesday: Survivalist night with Man Vs Wild, Running Wild with Bear Grylls and Naked and Afraid.
Wednesday: More petrol fumes with Diesel Brothers, Misfit Garage and Kindig Customs.
Thursday: Broader-based reality car shows like Shifting Gears and Street Outlaws.
Friday: Policing on both sides of the Atlantic with Live PD and Cops UK.
Saturday: Wilderness night with Alaskan Bush People and Alaska: The Last Frontier.
Nine will also have a home for programming from the Discovery machine that doesn’t fit into a particular night.
Turner: “The great thing about this is that the deal is obviously delivering for us on the linear channel, but it’s also providing thousands of hours and will sit on 9Now. Some of that Discovery content might be a bit more science based or content that doesn’t necessarily fit into those theme nights.”
Top Photo: Top Gear
In what will be a loss for the Australian Radio Network, the broadcaster revealed today that one of its key executives is departing.
Chief marketing officer Anthony Xydis (pictured) leaves the company short of person to steer its ad campaigns – messaging that has worked very well recently with the company boasting the #1 national network and the #1 FM breakfast shows in Sydney and Melbourne.
Of his decision to leave the business, Xydis said: “I’ve had an incredible seven years at ARN. I’ve worked with some wonderful people across the business, including our great business partners. I am very proud of all the achievements I’ve been able to contribute to as part of the executive team and the amazing brand and marketing team. In these unprecedented times, the power of radio and audio to entertain, inform and connect has never been more important and I look forward to hearing more of the team’s excellent work moving forward.”
ARN CEO Ciaran Davis said: “Anthony has been a valued member of the executive team. In his seven years at ARN he has led the brand, marketing and corporate communications strategy for a number of pivotal moments for the business including the launch of Sydney’s KIIS 1065 with Kyle & Jackie O, the rebrand of WSFM in Sydney, the launch of The Christian O’Connell Breakfast Show in Melbourne and the rollout of the KIIS Network and iHeartRadio across Australia. We all wish him the very best in his future endeavours.”
For the first time, artists will be able to perform for Nova’s Red Room via live stream on the Zoom app from April.
Nova’s Red Room Live Stream will deliver fans intimate live performances and Q&A’s with Australian and international artists. Listeners can win their exclusive invitation to take part in the live stream by listening to Smallzy’s Surgery Monday from 7pm.
The first Nova’s Red Room Live Stream will feature singer, song-writer Conan Gray who will perform his hit ‘Maniac’, plus the latest tracks off his new album ‘Kid Krow’. Listeners will also be able to go one on one with Conan during the fan Q & A. Conan Gray created his own YouTube channel in 2013 and since then has garnered over 179 million YouTube views.
By heading to novafm.com.au and listening to Smallzy’s Surgery, listeners can register to win their exclusive invite to be a part of Nova’s Red Room Live Stream with Conan Gray.
Paul Jackson, NOVA Entertainment’s Chief Programming and Marketing Officer said, “In these difficult times the power of music and supporting the music industry has never been more crucial. With artists currently unable to deliver a traditional concert experience to their fans, it was important for us to explore new ways in which we could provide a different money can’t buy live music experience to our listeners. Nova’s Red Room Live Stream will provide opportunities for us to work with our industry partners on a range of Australian and international artists, enabling them to connect intimately with their fans.”
Foxtel chief executive Patrick Delany has written to customers today with the following message:
I want to apologise if you have been trying to call us but have been unable to get through.
Our call centres are very short staffed as a result of restrictions put in place to slow the spread of COVID-19.
For many of you that have tried to call, we simply haven’t been able to answer your calls or made you wait a very long time.
I’m sorry and we are working hard to fix it for you.
• We are giving priority to customers with service faults. For many Australians we are an essential service – keeping them informed through Sky News Australia, our international news channels or the ABC’s news service.
• We are prioritising customers facing genuine hardship through our website. We will do all we can to support the many Australians who are facing financial distress.
• We are asking all other customers not to call at present and allow those in the greatest need to access the limited call centre capacity we have.
• We are working hard to get our call centres back to capacity by working with other call centre providers and by hiring more call centre staff in Victoria and Queensland.
Fixing this situation is our number one priority and we are working around the clock to get our call centres back up to full strength.
While we do, we would appreciate you delaying your call for the next week to enable us to focus on faults or hardship.
Thank you for your patience, support and loyalty. Please stay safe, stay positive, and look after one another.
Please visit the updated support pages on our website for any non-critical enquiries. Online services are available at foxtel.com.au/update.
Grant Broadcasters announced to all staff today the measures they will be implementing to ensure the company remains as strong as possible through the COVID 19 pandemic.
The senior executive team has agreed to a reduction in their base remuneration and a small number of redundancies have also been made to meet current market conditions.
Grant Broadcasters is one of Australia’s largest independent media companies. As well as interests in 52 regional radio stations, they own a sales representation company (TRSN) representing a further 70 independent radio networks and stations, the digital agency Sparx Digital, publish several local lifestyle magazines and have a significant online presence in local markets.
Grant Broadcasters is hopeful that the forthcoming announcement from the Prime Minister as to the additional package to assist workers will assist the company in retaining as many staff as possible. Depending on this announcement, further measures may need to be taken with regards to overall staffing numbers.
Further operating expense savings have already been implemented including the reduction of casual staff, travel between markets and client hospitality.
Grant Broadcasters’ CEO Alison Cameron (pictured) said “Like all other media, Grant Broadcasters is experiencing a significant downturn in revenue as a result of the restrictions placed on businesses and outdoor activities. We have taken prudent measures to ensure that the we can retain has many staff as possible through these trying times. We are committed to making sure that we give our people the best possible individual support, as well as continuing to provide the most relevant news and content to our local communities.”
The changes will come into effect immediately.
The final episode of Survivor All Stars saw David, Sharn, and Moana face off to be the first Australian All Star Sole Survivor on 10 and 10 Play.
Season 4- 2019 – David, Harry, Abbey, John and Daisy.
Season 3- 2018 – Mat, Moana, Lydia, Sharn, Shane, Shonee and Zach.
Season 2- 2017 – Jericho, Locky, Henry, Tarzan, Jacqui, Michelle and AK.
Season 1- 2016 – Lee, Phoebe, Brooke, Flick and Nick.
On the jury this season in order of elimination was Locky Gilbert, Harry Hills, Zach Kozyrski, Jacqui Patterson, Shonee Fairfax, Aaron ‘AK’ Knight, Mark ‘Tarzan’ Herlaar, and Brooke Jowett.
Sharn was the only one to make it this far in the game before after losing to Shane Gould in season three, ironically Gould was the first tribe member eliminated in All Stars, followed closely by season two winner Jericho Malabonga.
Following the elimination of Brooke last week the episode started with each tribe member discussing their motivations for wanting to win the show ahead of their final immunity challenge.
The challenge was revealed as an endurance test standing on pegs in the ocean while holding onto an idol in one hand and a tension chord in the other. Before the challenge started each contestant was given the surprise of having their family members present for the challenge.
Moana was the first one to fall after an hour and ten minutes, and after more than two hours Sharn eventually gave in to the worsening weather and rising waves to topple over and give immunity to David guaranteeing him a spot in the final two.
At the tribal council, Sharn and Moana both made their cases to David about taking them to the final two with David ending up sticking to the promise he made to Sharn in the earlier immunity challenge and sending Moana home.
On their final morning, Sharn and David were treated to something rarer than an immunity idol, a decent meal, as they ate bacon and eggs and reflected on making it to the end of the show and their plans for the final tribal council with the jury.
Sharn opened the tribal with a precise and detailed argument befitting of her day job as a barrister outlining her strategy of having multiple secret alliances to navigate her way to the end. David followed with a more casual and charming approach as he outlined all his big moves including being the mole in Vakuma at the start of the season, being the first person in Australian Survivor to hold two immunity idols at the same time, and engineering Locky’s blindside.
During the question segment, AK harkened back to when Sharn convinced him not to draw rocks and offered her the chance to earn his vote by drawing rocks or to back herself to convince him to vote for her based on her game, she ultimately decided to back her game and not draw rocks.
Sharn received a majority of the questions and a slightly more hostile response from the jury mostly due to her lying to AK, Brooke, and Shonee that resulted in Jacqui going home and in the same tribal telling Tarzan to vote for Moana.
David made a final impassioned plea and outlined how he was responsible for voting out almost every member of the jury.
For the final reveal the show moved to the Channel 10 studio in Sydney where host Jonathan LaPaglia announced the winner via video from Los Angeles due to not being able to travel because of COVID-19 with David receiving enough votes to be the Sole Survivor of Australian Survivor All Stars.
By Trent Thomas
Village Roadshow, Event Hospitality & Entertainment and Hoyts have been forced to close their cinema chains following a federal government-mandated shutdown announced on March 23 which has given Mediaweek a chance to look back at the historical box office in Australia.
This week we will examine which Australian made films were the highest-grossing releases. The films are ranked by its original total with the *inflation-adjusted total beside it in brackets.
*Note: These inflation-adjusted numbers are approximations and are provided by the Reserve Bank of Australia
The Hoyts distributed film was originally released on the 30th of April 1986 starring famed local comedian Paul Hogan and it unseated Mad Max 2 as the top domestically produced film in the country. The film has maintained this top spot ever since, spending the last 33+ years comfortably ahead of any other locally produced film with the gap even larger when you factor in inflation. In fact, the $128.39m inflation mark would make it the highest-grossing film in Australian history beating the $115.78m made by 2009’s Avatar.
The super team of director Baz Luhrman and actors Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman teamed up for this epic romance film set in the backdrop of Northern Australia during World War II which was distributed by Fox in November of 2008. Luhrmann originally planned to make a film about Alexander the Great starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Nicole Kidman but ultimately pivoted with Russell Crowe originally planned to star before Jackman eventually took the role.
“That will do pig” indeed as the adaption of Dick King-Smith’s 1983 novel The Sheep-Pig would be the second highest-grossing local production in Australian history if adjusted for inflation after being released in December of 1995 by UIP. The film was also a critical success earning seven Oscar nominations, including Best Picture, winning Best Visual Effects. The film is also known as Babe: The Gallant Pig in the US.
Released in December 2006 by Village Roadshow and directed by Australian George Miller who is known for the Mad Max franchise and was also a producer on Babe. The film was a critical success winning the inaugural BAFTA Award for Best Animated Film, and it was the fourth non-Disney or Pixar film to win the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. This is also the second film in the top five to feature Hugh Jackman and Nicole Kidman.
The most recently released film in the top five after being released in January of 2017, Lion is a biographical drama film based on the non-fiction book A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley. The film stars Dev Patel, Rooney Mara, David Wenham and, for the third time on this list, Nicole Kidman and was distributed by Transmission.
Along with these top five films the other films in the top 10 include:
#6 Moulin Rouge, 2001, distributed by Fox- $27.73m ($42.79m)
#7 The Great Gatsby, 2013, distributed by Roadshow- $27.38m ($30.46)
#8 Peter Rabbit, 2018, distributed by Sony- $26.75m ($27.18)
#9 Crocodile Dundee 2, 1988, distributed by Hoyts- $24.91 ($57.63)
#10 Strictly Ballroom, 1992, distributed by Ronin- $21.76m ($41.83)
For the first time ever, Foxtel have released complete seasons of some of the world’s greatest comedy classics On Demand, with full seasons available to stream from today, Tuesday March 31, on Foxtel Now.
This offering of classic comedy adds to Foxtel’s current slate of content available to watch On Demand. Foxtel announced earlier this month that all subscribers would have access to all content except for movies.
The following comedy series are all available to stream On Demand:
These pretzels are making me thirsty! One of the greatest comedies of all time, Seinfeld stars Jerry Seinfeld as a stand-up comedian whose life in New York City is made even more chaotic by his quirky group of friends who join him in wrestling with life’s most perplexing, yet often trivial questions. Co-stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander and Michael Richards.
In this Emmy Award-winning series and worldwide smash-hit, Julia Louis-Dreyfus stars as the Vice President of the United States Selina Meyer, who finds the job is nothing like she expected, but everything her incompetent staff warned her about. Throughout her tenure, she attempts to prevent various political uproars while juggling her public as well as private life.
Beloved comedic actress Fran Drescher stars in The Nanny as Fran Fine, a saleswoman who appears on the doorstep of wealthy widower Maxwell Sheffield’s New York home. Fran unexpectedly gets a job as the nanny for the Broadway producer’s three children and brings her no-nonsense honesty, sharp sense of humour and ‘Queens logic’ into the Sheffield household.
Parks and Recreation
From the Emmy Award-winning team behind The Office is this hilarious ensemble comedy that follows Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) as a mid-level bureaucrat in the Parks and Recreation Department of Pawnee, Indiana, and her tireless efforts to make her quintessential American town just a little bit more fun. Co-stars include Rob Lowe, Aziz Ansari and Nick Offerman.
The multiple award-winning comedy is told through the voice of Tina Fey as variety show producer Liz Lemon. The series also features Alec Baldwin as top network executive Jack Donaghy and Tracy Morgan as Tracy Jordan, the unpredictable star of Lemon’s hit variety show. Lemon always has her hands full, juggling corporate interference from Donaghy while attempting to salvage her own personal life.
Starring Steve Carrell, the multi-award-winning US comedy series presents an hilarious documentary-style look at the humorous and sometimes poignant, foolishness that plagues the 9-to-5 world. Based on the BBC hit series of the same name, the show is a fly-on-the-wall “docu-reality” parody of modern American office life, delving into the lives of the workers at a paper supply company in Pennsylvania.
Other complete series also available:
Curb Your Enthusiasm
By James Manning
• Final vows for final couples keeps MAFS audience engaged
• Survivor pushes to 980k with 10’s best share since January
• David’s final game-winning decision – dumps Mo for Sharn
Monday news bulletins
Seven News 1,263,000/1,242,00
Nine News 1,214,000/1,176,000 (Biggest weekday since 2017)
ABC News 978,000
A Current Affair 935,000 (Biggest since April 2019)
Four Corners 761,000
Australian Story 691,000
Nine News special COVID-19 644,000
The Latest 606,000
The Project 392,000/655,000 (Biggest since January 2018)
10 News First 555,000/328,000
Seven News at 4 338,000/354,000
Nine’s Afternoon News 305,000
ABC Late News 296,000
Today 284,000 (Second highest 2020)
News Breakfast 278,000
The Drum 259,000
The Morning Show 254,000
SBS World News 199,000
Today Extra 198,000
Nine: Tracy Grimshaw is hosting A Current Affair from a home studio this week. She started the Monday program interviewing the Treasurer who was also on The Latest at the same time and then on 7.30 a little later. The program continues to pull big numbers with 938,000 last night after a week 13 average of 802,000.
Married At First Sight Monday saw vows from the remaining couples with the audience on 1.122m which is almost identical to the number a week ago.
Later in the night, and after a week of no AFL football, Footy Classified did 89,000 with 68,000 in Melbourne.
Seven: The Monday share was the lowest for survey 2020 and the second-lowest on any survey night. The primary channel doesn’t need much non-news content to get it through the critical timeslots in the last week of Q1 survey. Last night it seems to have chosen Border Security to follow The Latest. The on doc did 386,000 and was followed by US drama 9-1-1 on 299,000. Seven has also reported it set a VOD record for a second successive day as viewers enjoy 7plus content.
10: The second of two big nights of reality finals for the network. On Australian Survivor: All Stars, the three finalists all had reasons to do better with a second chance – the first time around David was ousted with an Idol in his pocket, Mo retired hurt and Sharn went to the final two, missing out on the title by one vote to Shane Gould. The final night started in fine style with many of the audience who invested heavily in the 24 episodes shedding a tear along with the contestants as they were reunited with families ahead of the final challenge. David won the final immunity and ultimately chose to take Sharn through to the final tribal council and virtually guaranteeing his victory. The final episode started with 876,000 and ended with 984,000. The Reunion episode then did 625,000 which is the biggest Reunion audience ever. There has never been an All Stars series or a regular series at this time of year before so there is no direct comparison. But here are what previous season finals of Australian Survivor, all broadcast in September or October, have rated:
ABC: It was very much a COVID-19 night on the channel and check the news and current affairs numbers for how the programs performed. Q&A had a second successive week over half a million with the show ranking #1 in its timeslot toward the end of its time on air. Q&A ended with one of the panellists performing – Aussie singer-songwriter Josh Pyke.
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.2%||7TWO||2.9%||GO!||2.9%||10 Bold||3.3%||VICELAND||1.3%|
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||1.9%||GEM||3.4%||10 Peach||2.0%||Food Net||0.6%|
|SBS World Movies||0.5%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||10 Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.4%||7TWO||4.9%||GO!||2.7%||WIN Bold||3.8%||VICELAND||1.1%|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||3.6%||GEM||5.2%||WIN Peach||1.9%||Food Net||0.4%|
|ABC NEWS||1.7%||7flix (Excl. Tas/WA)||1.1%||9Life||2.1%||Sky News on WIN||2.2%||NITV||0.1%|
|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
The digital duopoly’s dereliction contradicts their hype, namely that they’re a force for good, writes Damian Eales in The Australian.
[Damian Eales is president of the International News Media Association and chief operating officer of publishing for News Corp Australia.]
Google claims to generate billions of leads to news sites, raising the question of why so many are going bust. Facebook is the company that bans news outlets or, in Facebook-speak, imposes “algorithmic penalties” because of arbitrary breaches of its morality code. Yet the very next month it live-streams mass murder.
The pending closure of AAP, Australia’s 85-year-old news wire, and the demise of revered US news publisher McClatchy are yet further demonstrations of the harm done to news media around the world. Now, in the era of COVID-19, the metaphoric viral threat Big Tech poses has become biological reality.
Now is the time for governments and regulators to act. If Big Tech can be tamed, the sustainability of journalism in our communities might be assured again. But, for many, time has run out for plan B. And if there’s no media to challenge Big Tech’s falsities, who will benefit from its triumph?
The coronavirus is likely to hasten the end of advertising-driven media, Ben Smith writes in The New York Times. And government should not rescue it.
It’s a moment of deep crisis for the local news business, which could have been blown over by a light breeze and is now facing a hurricane. But it’s also a moment of great promise for a new generation of largely non-profit local publications.
The time is now to make a painful but necessary shift: Abandon most for-profit local newspapers, whose business model no longer works, and move as fast as possible to a national network of nimble new online newsrooms. That way, we can rescue the only thing worth saving about America’s gutted, largely mismanaged local newspaper companies – the journalists.
A Current Affair host Tracy Grimshaw has joined the many Aussies recently tasked with having to rearrange their homes into an office set-up as we battle the coronavirus pandemic and implement social distancing measures, reports news.com.au’s Bella Fowler.
But – like many of us would have already experienced – it’s not always smooth sailing on day one.
Broadcasting from her spare bedroom, which has been transformed into a home studio complete with lights, audio, camera and A Current Affair backdrop display, Grimshaw told viewers she was opting to host the program from home for the next few weeks.
“Tonight we’re coming to you from my bedroom,” Tracy Grimshaw said at the beginning of the program.
“And there’s something I never thought I’d say.
“It’s a spare room and in the interests of staying home we’ll be here for a while. I have a small crew here for the first night, which is allowed, because they’re of course at work.”
ABC has announced that the highly anticipated new season of the multi-award winning series Killing Eve will be fast-tracked from the US, with episode one dropping on iview Monday 13th April at 12pm.
Enjoying critical acclaim, raking in the accolades and garnering even more fans, Killing Eve is one of the most talked about shows around the world.
In season three Jodie Comer and Sandra Oh reprise their roles as enigmatic Russian assassin Villanelle (Jodie Comer) and MI5 intelligence agent Eve Polastri (Sandra Oh), reigniting their deadly game of cat and mouse.
Series two ended dramatically, with the fashionable, yet deadly, Villanelle shooting Eve and leaving her to die among the ancient ruins of Rome.
When series three drops on iview and screens on ABC TV Sunday 19th April at 9.30pm, audiences will finally discover Eve’s fate…does she survive? Will Eve survive? If she does, will she ever forgive Villanelle? Will we find out more about Villanelle’s past? Does Hugo die? And if he lives, will he ever forgive Eve?
Killing Eve is based on the four-part novella series Codename Villanelle, written by Luke Jennings.
More than two weeks after testing positive to coronavirus, Richard Wilkins is facing criticism after being tested multiple times despite a looming shortage of testing kits in Australia, reports News Corp’s Mibenge Nsenduluka.
The Channel 9 presenter, who has been in isolation for 18 days with no coronavirus symptoms, has been accused of “wasting” valuable resources after being tested four times in two weeks.
However, Wilkins says he’s simply following the medical guidelines, and is keen to make sure he doesn’t put anyone else at risk by going out before he is cleared of the virus.
Last week, he blasted national guidelines as “irresponsible” and revealed he has tested positive three times and is hoping to eventually get a negative result.
Wilkins, 65, first tested positive for COVID-19 on March 12, days after meeting Tom Hanks’ wife Rita Wilson following her intimate gig at the Sydney Opera House.
Football Federation Australia has begun scoping out options for a new broadcast partner for the A-League, believing Fox Sports is looking to end its 15-year partnership with Australian football, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Dominic Bossi.
Despite having three years left to run on its contract, senior club and FFA sources anticipate Fox Sports will seek to end its $57 million per-year deal with the A-League, which has been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
FFA chief executive James Johnson would not comment on negotiations with Fox Sports but confirmed the organisation has already started to discuss back-up plans in the event the pay-TV network pulls out of football.
The ABC televises one A-League match each weekend and will be approached as a potential back-up television partner. A previous deal with Network 10 could be revived after the free-to-air station was close to securing two live A-League games a weekend this year before talks with Fox Sports stalled.
The NRL could be left with as little as $20 million in cash reserves by the end of the year if the competition is not able to restart in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Adrian Proszenko.
In a dramatic day for the code, Rugby League Central vowed to slash its operating costs by 70 per cent over the second half of the season to free up funds to appease the clubs and the players. The money saved will result in an additional $40 million being given to the clubs in emergency funding from the period of April to October, giving them an extra $2.5 million each and taking their total to $6.4 million more than what was originally budgeted for 2020.
There are fears over whether Foxtel will be able to meet its obligations even if football does resume, while Nine Entertainment Co announced it could save $130 million this calendar year if the season is scrapped. That would leave a huge financial black hole the NRL will struggle to recover from.
Professional rugby will survive the coronavirus pandemic in Australia but Rugby Australia boss Raelene Castle could not rule out axing another Super Rugby side in 2021, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Georgina Robinson.
Castle announced she would take a 50 per cent pay cut on her $815,000 a year salary.
Castle declined to say whether broadcast partner Foxtel had asked for some of its first quarter payments to be repaid, as the competition was suspended two weeks before the end of the quarter.
The AFL has secured the cash that it hopes will help it survive the coronavirus crisis, reports the Herald Sun.
The league has been granted secured lines of credit with NAB and ANZ, understood to be worth as much as $600 million, that will provide urgent funds that the game needs to counter “significant cash shortfalls” as it endeavours to navigate the uncharted territory that the global virus presents.
“I want to thank the NAB and the ANZ for their support but I also want to stress that while this is a relief, it is not a return to business as usual or a release valve,” league boss Gillon McLachlan said.