Wednesday October 10, 2018

Cricket’s biggest revolution since KP’s World Series Cricket?

Foxtel last night officially launched the new home of cricket, Fox Cricket, signalling what it is calling a new era for cricket broadcasting in Australia.

Foxtel and Seven secured television rights for six years earlier this year in a deal worth $1.82b in cash and contra air time. As part of its deal, Fox Sports secured digital rights for its platforms.

The new channel launch saw the inside of the Hordern Pavilion turned into a mini-replica of the SCG complete with grandstand seating for the guests, a wraparound video screen wall and a cricket pitch where hosts Adam Gilchrist and Jessica Yates hosted the launch.

The event was full of agency executives, News Corp executives and soon-to-depart editors from The Australian, The Daily Telegraph plus The Courier-Mail, media from around Australia and an army of Foxtel and Fox Sports executives.

The attention to detail inside even included a music group – a string quartet plus a trumpeter and a conductor – who played a version of the channel’s new theme in the background during the presentation.

Foxtel CEO Patrick Delany never goes anywhere without massive, hi-res screens to tell the story and they were again the star attraction last night, along with Richie Benaud’s widow Daphne, who stole the show when she presented Gilchrist and Brett Lee with Richie’s lip microphone he used throughout his broadcast career. If ever there was a symbol of the passing of the rights from the old broadcaster to the new, that was it.

On hand for Fox Cricket were also Ian Healy (heard on air last weekend), Darren Lehmann, Mark Howard, Mel Jones and Sarah Jones.

Current players included Steve Smith, Ellyse Perry, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Pat Cummins and Alyssa Healy.

Sitting front row in the stand were Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland and incoming CEO Kevin Roberts.

Gogglebox Australia stars – and massive cricket fans – the Delpechitra Family also attended and were much in demand on the red carpet.

Commentators who couldn’t attend sent video messages including Brendon Julian, Alan Border and Mike Hussey in Dubai, Neroli Meadows and Mark Waugh working across town and Isa Guha from Lords.

Shane Warne is on a book tour in the UK, but he hosted a brilliant mini-doco about growing up with cricket, which included career highlights and even details about his celebrity friends!

Brett Lee provided a glimpse of India filmed on a busy street surrounded by cricket fans.

The Fox Cricket package offers the cricket fan everything:

• All men’s Test Matches, One-Day and T20 Internationals played in Australia plus every game of the Big Bash League.
• Every women’s international in Australia, the ICC World Twenty20 and 23 WBBL games.
• The Sheffield Shield Final, the Prime Minister’s Xl and the Governor General’s Xl.

Fox Cricket lives at Foxtel channel 501 while viewers can also watch much of the coverage in 4K if they have an iQ4 set-top box on channel 444.

The channel has already commenced broadcasting.

Foxtel is aiming to showcase the complete Fox Cricket experience with its first 4K broadcast on November 4 when Australia takes on South Africa in the first ODI. Across summer, fans will be able to watch every men’s international Test, ODI and T20 match played in Australia plus 16 BBL matches in 4K on channel 444.

Fox Cricket has assembled 31 commentators with 23 new faces and six female commentators who between them made 1,371 Test appearances and 154,472 runs. The team includes six national captains.

The headliners are Adam Gilchrist and Shane Warne, who will be joined by Mark Waugh, Isa Guha, Andrew Symonds, Mike Hussey, Brett Lee, Allan Border, Mel Jones, Kerry O’Keeffe, Michael Vaughan, Brendon Julian, Steve Smith, Jessica Yates, Mark Howard, Mitchell Johnson, Darren Lehmann, John Hastings, Ellyse Perry, Alyssa Healy, Neroli Meadows, Sarah Jones, Katherine Loughnan, Alex Blackwell, Tom Morris and Megan Barnard.

International guests Graeme Smith, Harsha Bhogle and Russel Arnold will provide expert opinion on the visiting teams.

Speaking last night, Foxtel CEO Patrick Delany said: “We won’t just broadcast cricket – we will revolutionise it.

“The biggest lineup of cricket led by the best commentary team with the most in-depth opinion, analysis and entertainment, all in the one place.

“We also have plenty of innovations and tricks up our sleeve to enhance the experience while the others are taking ad breaks, as well as the way in which we will analyse and deliver the nuggets of insight viewers will only get with Fox Cricket.”

13 new entertainment shows coming to Fox Cricket

To support the match coverage, Fox Cricket will launch 13 entertainment programs including five pre and post shows.

Game day coverage will feature Come in Spinner, Test Cricket Live on Fox, The Big Break, Tea for Two, Fox Cricket – Test Day and B4 The Bash.

Cricket 360 will be hosted by Gerard Whateley and Robert “Crash” Craddock.

Craddock will also host the award-winning Cricket Legends, sitting down with the biggest names in the game with fans able to relive the matches that made legends on Fox Cricket Classics.

Gus Worland will deliver his unique insights on what it’s like to be a fan on the all-new The Cricket Tragic, while James “The Professor” Rochford has been let loose on cricket with his own show The Night Watchman.

Fox Cricket will launch a new app, launching in time for the Australia v South Africa ODI Series, which promises to bring fans closer to the action. Free to download, the app delivers a personalised experience for fans and features all the latest news, fixtures, scores, stats and video from across the world of cricket.

MCN announcers eight major partners for Fox Cricket

Multi Channel Network (MCN) has revealed Foxtel’s latest broadcast innovation, Fox Cricket channel, has secured eight premier partners: Toyota Australia, Alinta, Lion Beer Australia, bet365, Harvey Norman, McDonald’s, Bunnings and Maytronics.

MCN said the new channel will also see the first rollout of innovative advertising models that feature unprecedented levels of integration.

MCN national sport sales director Martin Medcraf said the launch of the Fox Cricket channel represents a major evolution in how brands connect with sports audiences and is the beginning of how MCN will pioneer new advertising models for premium content.

“Australia’s new home of cricket, Fox Cricket, not only signals a new era for cricket broadcasting in Australia, but also signifies a major shift in how MCN will be approaching advertising integrations for Foxtel’s premier assets,” he said.

“Rather than putting a traditional emphasis on TVCs, we’re creating a more balanced spread across Fox Cricket’s TV, digital and in-app channels. Additionally, we are working in collaboration with partners and Fox Sports to enhance favourite technologies like snicko, hot spot and ball tracker, plus build additional new innovative technologies on the channel.

“The shift in approach means we deliver a premium environment for advertisers, while enriching the viewers’ knowledge of the game and enhancing their experience. Our partners see huge value in this new way of activating their integrations. Evolving the focus from a TVC to seamless integration within the program or its supporting assets provides a full range of audience touchpoints. It also means we can integrate partners’ advertising messages into the very fabric of the channel.”

Fox Cricket is expected to attract huge audiences. It will feature every Men’s Test, One-Day International, Twenty20, Big Bash League matches, women’s international cricket and 23 Women’s Big Bash League matches, all available to watch or stream live in HD.

Fox Cricket will also be Foxtel’s second code to be broadcast in 4K in the subscription TV provider’s aim to reinvigorate its viewing experience for customers.

Head of Fox Sports, Peter Campbell, said: “We have had an amazing response from advertisers to our Fox Cricket proposition to connect brands with fans through the shared love of cricket on any device. At Fox Sports we put the fan first and we firmly believe that a better experience for fans means better engagement for our brand partners. We are invested in working with our advertisers to create true brand partnerships that result in something different and impactful.”

Fox Cricket bowls what it is calling the first official ball on Sunday November 4, 2018 with the live men’s match between Australia and South Africa from the new Perth Stadium.

Best of British – from Vanity Fair and Press to The Little Drummer Girl

This week BBC First is premiering the wonderful period drama Vanity Fair. The seven-part drama is being called a very modern adaption of William Makepeace Thackeray’s Victorian literary classic.

Set against the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, the series follows Becky Sharp as she attempts to claw her way out of poverty and scale the heights of English Society using every means at her disposal.

Vanity Fair

BBC First and its drama slate have been showing off the channel’s forthcoming slate recently.

Mediaweek recently spoke with Liam Keelan, BBC Studios’ global scripted portfolio director about the importance of the Australian market and the drama slate.

To find out a little more about the specifics of what is ahead for viewers and the attractions for advertising partners, Mediaweek spoke with Tim Christlieb, director of branded services, BBC Studios, Australia and New Zealand.

Tim Christlieb

Although I am very biased toward British period dramas, Mediaweek is predicting Vanity Fair could be on many Best Of 2018 lists come the end of the year. There is plenty of other BBC First content that could compete for a spot though.

Also screening here before Christmas is the first season of Press.

Christlieb told Mediaweek they will be the two major series to screen before 2019 starts. However, he added a third, The Little Drummer Girl, noting it would probably go out in November, although the exact date was not available yet. Guests at a recent BBC drama showcase held by the BBC in Sydney got to preview the series via an extended trailer.

“If you think about what The Night Manager did for BBC First, The Little Drummer Girl should have a similar impact. It comes from the same production company and features a big cast.”

Press comes with some great credentials too, being written by Mike Bartlett, the writer behind Doctor Foster who this time turns his gaze to the British newspaper industry.

As to the delay in getting some series to air in Australia, Christlieb said where they can do that, they often do. However, where it doesn’t make sense for the audience, they prefer to delay the title a little to give the broadcaster time to promote it locally to try to attract the biggest possible audience.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article here or subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

Ten years of Banijay: Why there is more appetite for Aussie and Kiwi content

The advent of technology has raised new challenges for the global television sector distribution. However, when it comes to the production side of the industry, it has provided more opportunities than challenges.

This is the happy place that the 10-year-old international production company Banijay Group plays in, company CEO Marco Bassetti told Mediaweek.

“We are storytellers,” he said. There may be more genres of TV being produced now than ever but at the core of it all “is storytelling”.

Banijay Group has a significant presence in Australia and New Zealand via Screentime. The globalisation of the industry has meant that there are more funding opportunities as well as more competition for local production houses.

Screentime New Zealand CEO Philly de Lacey told Mediaweek: “Our industry has become very efficient at producing quality work at a very good price.”

Screentime New Zealand CEO Philly de Lacey (Credit: Rahoul Ghose)

Some well-known productions to come from Screentime in Australia and New Zealand include Anh’s Brush with Fame, Wolf Creek, Underbelly Files: Chopper, Anzac Girls and Underbelly NZ.

Bassetti used an Australian series commissioned by ABC TV and Netflix called Pine Gap as an example of the dual platform distribution model that was not previously as common in the global TV marketplace. “It’s a new business model. In the past you could not produce for two platforms that have distributions in the same country,” he said. This exposes content to more eyeballs than ever before.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article here or subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

7plus records its highest ever BVOD week

7plus, the broadcast video on demand (BVOD) product from Australia’s most watched TV network Seven, recorded 59.8 million streaming minutes of video on demand (VOD) content last week, making it the best VOD week in its history. Over 60% of viewing came via a connected TV.

Key programming last week included the Jimmy Barnes documentary from CJZ, the return of The Good Doctor with the start of the second season and the final ever episode of 800 Words.

Including live streaming, 7plus recorded a total of 80 million minutes streamed last week.

In the year-to-date 7plus is the number one FTA network for live streaming with a 47.3% share of the FTA market, driven by sporting events including the AFL Grand Final, Winter Olympics and Commonwealth Games along with primetime content including Seven News, Sunrise and My Kitchen Rules.

Seven’s head of scheduling Brook Hall said: “After less than a year since launch, 7plus is growing exponentially and has become a major player in the local VOD market.

“It’s particularly pleasing to reach the 60 million mark thanks to a stable of high-performing shows, rather than being reliant on one or two hits. Having a broad library of quality content sets us up for even greater success in the coming months.”

Head of digital sales James Bayes said: “Commercial FTA BVOD audiences are up 101% year on year in September, fuelled by the explosion of connected TV.

“More and more advertisers are waking up to the power of CTV in bringing together the best of broadcast and the best of digital on the most effective screen at driving brand outcomes. 7plus is so much more than just catch-up.”

Source: OzTAM, National. Share of FTA Live Streaming: 2018 YTD Wks 1-40 (31/12/2017-6/10/18). VOD Minutes 2018 Wk 40 (30/9-6/10/2018). OzTAM, National, Commercial FTA TV Total Minutes (Live + VOD), September 2018 v September 2017.

Mr Inbetween
FX Networks and Foxtel commission more of Mr Inbetween

FX Networks and Foxtel have renewed Australian drama series Mr Inbetween for a second season, to premiere in 2019.

Scott Ryan, who features in it as the criminal-for-hire Ray Shoesmith, created the show.

“It’s been fantastic to see Mr Inbetween embraced by fans and critics. The exciting, offbeat and fast-moving first season is defined by the magnetic performance and creative vision of Scott Ryan and director Nash Edgerton,” said Eric Schrier, president of original programming at FX Networks and FX Productions. “Our thanks to Nash and Scott, our partners at Foxtel, fellow executive producer Jason Burrows, producer Michele Bennett, and the great cast and crew. We can’t wait to return to Ray’s world in season 2 of Mr Inbetween.”

The first season of the program had six episodes, which were written by Ryan and directed by Nash Edgerton. Actors on the show include Damon Herriman, Justin Rosniak, Brooke Satchwell, Jackson Tozer, Nicholas Cassim, Chika Yasumura and Matt Nable.

The series was shot in Australia and produced by Blue-Tongue Films and Jungle Entertainment, in association with FX Productions, Screen Australia and Create NSW. Ryan, Edgerton and Jason Burrows were executive producers and Michele Bennett was Producer.

In the US, Mr Inbetween is averaging 2.25 million viewers across all linear and non-linear platforms. In Live+7, the series premiere of Mr Inbetween (Tuesday September 25) lifted +99% from Live+Same Day in Adults 18-49 (577,000) and +113% for Total Viewers (1.4 million). Among Total Viewers, the gain was higher than the previous six FX drama series premieres. The second episode (Tuesday September 25) lifted +97% in Adults 18-49 (429,000) and +110% in Total Viewers (1.1 million).

Mr Inbetween returned Tuesday October 9 on FX with the final two episodes of the first season beginning at 11:14 p.m. ET/PT and concluding at 12:19 a.m.

The first season of Mr Inbetween received strong critical acclaim:

• “One of 2018’s best shows” – The Hollywood Reporter
• ”The killer with a heart of gold isn’t a new trope… but Mr Inbetween gives it a fresh and funny going over.” – The Boston Globe
• “Mr Inbetween can be enjoyed simply for Mr Ryan’s ability to put together scenes of slowly simmering absurdity.” – The New York Times
• “[Scott] Ryan has a striking and compulsively watchable physical presence: bald, angular and utterly calm.” – Rolling Stone
• “Mr Inbetween gets wilder as it goes along, until the season finale becomes a fully surreal, Fargo-ish tale of a hit gone way wrong.” – Entertainment Weekly
• “There’s a quiet charm in this Australian import.” – TV

TV Ratings Analysis: October 9

• The Block stands strong against two-and-a-half-hour Survivor finale
• Sharn makes one final mistake on Survivor: Picking Shane Gould
• Seven’s The Good Doctor and ABC’s Exposed battle for viewers

By James Manning


Home And Away crept a little higher last night. After starting the week on 618,000, the audience grew to 639,000.

The second and final episode of Queen Of The World did 553,000, taking third spot in the slot.

The Good Doctor struggled too, compared to its history. The second episode this season did 587,000 after the season launched last week on 712,000. Opposition in the slot included the Survivor decision and the final of Exposed with the ABC doco out-rating Doctor in Sydney and Melbourne. Expect the consolidated numbers for The Good Doctor to lift the overnight result considerably though.


A Current Affair was again under 800,000 with 772,000 after 769,000 on Monday.

The Block featured all the contestants doing their best in the one apartment – and some quirky wallpaper. Despite the final of Survivor elsewhere, The Block audience stayed strong on 929,000 after 961,000 on Tuesday last week.

The season final of True Story With Hamish & Andy featured an all-star cast for its audience of 566,000. That is bang on 567,000 watching last week. A repeat episode last night then did 421,000.


Hamish Macdonald was reporting live from the Sydney Opera House at the end of The Project last night with 512,000 watching. Covering the Survivor finale was Dave Thornton in Fiji.

The Survivor finale came in three parts and didn’t disappoint. The Finale episode did 862,000, the Winner Announced was on 877,000 and then the Reunion did 609,000.

The numbers were up year-on-year. In 2017 the Finale did 720,000, The Winner Announced was on 787,000 and the Reunion did 508,000.

Brian bombed out in the final immunity challenge when he accidentally lifted his hand to take off his cap. Shane had earlier exited, no doubt hoping the eventual winner would pick her to go to Tribal Council.

That is what happened. But it was the crucial mistake Sharn made after getting to the final two – the jury ended up liking Shane more, with the champion swimmer beating the superstar lawyer by just one vote.

The series will be back next year and it is currently taking applications for contestants. During the Reunion episode all contestants were thrilled by the experience and each said they’d return in a heartbeat.

Special mention again to the team from Endemol Shine – it is hard to think of a better-looking show on Australian TV.


Exposed: The Case Of Keli Lane ended last night with 572,000 after 8.30pm. The series launched two weeks ago with 558,000 and then did 513,000 last week. It will be fascinating to see what reporter Caro Meldrum-Hanna does next. A Facebook group for Exposed now has over 11,000 members.

Earlier in the night Ask The Doctor did 441,000 while later Tick Fucking Tock did 362,000.


Great Continental Railway Journeys did good business again with 268,000.

Insight then did 200,000 followed by Dateline on 146,000.

Week 41 TV: Tuesday
ABC Seven Nine Ten SBS
ABC 12.6% 7 17.5% 9 19.8% TEN 16.9% SBS One 4.8%
ABC 2 2.7% 7TWO 2.5% GO! 3.7% ONE 3.4% VICELAND 1.1%
ABC ME 0.8% 7mate 3.8% GEM 3.4% ELEVEN 2.3% Food Net 0.8%
ABC NEWS 1.2% 7flix 1.1% 9Life 1.5% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 17.3% 25.0% 28.3% 22.6% 6.9%
ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates Ten Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.5% 7 19.3% 9 17.4% WIN 12.0% SBS One 4.3%
ABC 2 3.0% 7TWO 4.0% GO! 4.1% ONE 3.4% VICELAND 1.2%
ABC ME 1.1% 7mate 5.7% GEM 5.6% ELEVEN 2.0% Food Net 0.7%
ABC NEWS 1.5% 7flix 0.9% 9Life 1.3% Sky News  on WIN 0.9% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 17.1% 29.9% 28.4% 18.3% 6.4%


86.8% 13.2%


Tuesday FTA
  1. Seven News Seven 953,000
  2. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 941,000
  3. The Block Nine 929,000
  4. Australian Survivor Grand Finale – The Winner Announced Ten 877,000
  5. Australian Survivor Grand Finale Ten 862,000
  6. Nine News 6:30 Nine 859,000
  7. Nine News Nine 845,000
  8. A Current Affair Nine 772,000
  9. ABC News ABC 716,000
  10. Home And Away Seven 639,000
  11. Australian Survivor – Reunion Ten 609,000
  12. The Good Doctor Seven 587,000
  13. Exposed: The Case Of Keli Lane ABC 572,000
  14. True Story With Hamish & Andy Nine 566,000
  15. The Chase Australia Seven 559,000
  16. Queen Of The World Seven 533,000
  17. 7.30 ABC 531,000
  18. The Project 7pm Ten 512,000
  19. Ask The Doctor ABC 441,000
  20. Hot Seat Nine 437,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. Australian Survivor Grand Finale – The Winner Announced Ten 297,000
  2. Australian Survivor Grand Finale Ten 284,000
  3. The Block Nine 270,000
  4. Australian Survivor – Reunion Ten 215,000
  5. True Story With Hamish & Andy Nine 174,000


18-49 Top 5

  1. Australian Survivor Grand Finale – The Winner Announced Ten 463,000
  2. Australian Survivor Grand Finale Ten 442,000
  3. The Block Nine 417,000
  4. Australian Survivor – Reunion Ten 323,000
  5. True Story With Hamish & Andy Nine 280,000


25-54 Top 5

  1. Australian Survivor Grand Finale – The Winner Announced Ten 483,000
  2. Australian Survivor Grand Finale Ten 470,000
  3. The Block Nine 468,000
  4. Australian Survivor – Reunion Ten 335,000
  5. True Story With Hamish & Andy Nine 315,000
Tuesday Multichannel
  1. Dino Dana ABCKIDS/COMEDY 182,000
  2. Dot. ABCKIDS/COMEDY 182,000
  3. Outback Opal Hunters-PM 7mate 170,000
  4. Peter Rabbit ABCKIDS/COMEDY 167,000
  5. Highway Patrol-E2 Pm 7mate 166,000
  6. Bluey-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 162,000
  7. Andy’s Wild Adventures ABCKIDS/COMEDY 161,000
  8. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 157,000
  9. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 153,000
  10. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 151,000
  11. Peppa Pig-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 147,000
  12. Neighbours ELEVEN 145,000
  13. Wanda And The Alien-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 144,000
  14. Little Roy-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 140,000
  15. Highway Patrol-PM 7mate 140,000
  16. The Big Bang Theory TX2 9GO! 137,000
  17. Hey Duggee-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 136,000
  18. The Big Bang Theory TX3 9GO! 134,000
  19. Midsomer Murders 9Gem 132,000
  20. The Big Bang Theory TX1 9GO! 131,000
Tuesday Subscription TV
  1. Live: Cricket: Pak V Aus 1st Test Day 3 FOX CRICKET 101,000
  2. Live: Cricket: Pak V Aus 1st Test Day 3 FOX CRICKET 75,000
  3. Live: Cricket: Tea Break FOX CRICKET 67,000
  4. Live: Cricket: Pak V Aus 1st Test Day 3 FOX CRICKET 61,000
  5. Live: Cricket: Big Break 2018 Cricket FOX CRICKET 56,000
  6. The Bolt Report Sky News Live 55,000
  7. Jones & Co Sky News Live 55,000
  8. Paul Murray Live Sky News Live 53,000
  9. Mr Inbetween showcase 38,000
  10. The Simpsons FOX8 33,000
  11. Top Wing Nick Jr. 33,000
  12. Live: Back Page FOX SPORTS 503 31,000
  13. Highway Patrol FOX8 31,000
  14. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 30,000
  15. NCIS TVH!TS 30,000
  16. Paw Patrol Nick Jr. 30,000
  17. PML Overtime Sky News Live 29,000
  18. Eye Of The Needle FOX Classics 29,000
  19. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 28,000
  20. Credlin Sky News Live 28,000

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

Disney’s TV division making room for 21st Century Fox executives

The Walt Disney Company announced on Monday that several Fox executives will assume top leadership positions at its television division, once its US$71.3 billion deal to acquire much of 21st Century Fox is formally approved, reports The New York Times.

Peter Rice, the president of 21st Century Fox, will become the chairman of Walt Disney Television. In that role, Rice will oversee most of Disney’s vast television properties – including ABC, FX and National Geographic – with the notable exception of ESPN.

Dana Walden, a co-chief executive of the Fox Television Group, will become the chairwoman of Disney Television studios and ABC Entertainment. With the new appointment, Walden will run ABC, Freeform, local stations and the combined companies’ giant new television studio.

The executives who join Disney after years at Fox will find themselves in a corporate environment that is much different from what they are used to. Fox, controlled by the family of Rupert Murdoch, gives its executives a lot of free rein. Disney’s culture is more hierarchical, with clear lines of command that lead to one man: the company’s hands-on chief executive, Robert A. Iger.

[Read the original]

How Facebook is planning to be a complete business platform

Facebook believes it has one key strength in its quest to become indispensible to the business community: billions of people already know how to use it, reports Fairfax Media’s Emma Koehn.

The social networking platform is doubling down on becoming a complete project management product, announcing a global upgrade to its Workplace by Facebook offering at a conference in San Francisco on Tuesday.

“Our goal is to build products that help people [be] more productive at work… you shouldn’t have to switch between multiple tools,” product manager of Workplace by Facebook Simon Cross told Fairfax Media.

Workplace was launched in 2016 and looks similar to Facebook’s social offer but lets staff chat, conduct video calls and deliver staff updates via a Facebook-like interface.

The basic offer is free, but premium tools, including integration with Google’s suite, start at around $US3 per person, per month.

Facebook has stiff competition in the work and project management space. More than 30,000 organisations have come on board with Workplace since its launch two years ago. This may seem small in comparison to workplace communications tool Slack, which said earlier in 2018 it had hit six million daily users and had more than three million paying customers.

[Read the original]

Musical money: Ed Sheeran banked an absolute fortune in 2017

The British pop star Ed Sheeran raked in more than £36 million ($67 million) last year, according to his company’s annual report. Not bad for someone who started out as a busker, reports Fairfax Media’s Broede Carmody.

The documents reveal the Shape of You singer recorded a profit of £27.36 million ($50 million) before tax for the year ending December 31, 2017. This is because the 27-year-old spent a massive £8.9 million ($17 million) on operational costs (presumably to keep the first year of his worldwide ÷ tour running smoothly).

It’s expected Sheeran’s bank accounts will be even healthier in the coming years, given his worldwide tour doesn’t end any time soon. Despite visiting Australia in March, he isn’t due to wrap up his tour dates until August 2019.

[Read the original]

News Brands

BBC News launches BBC Reel: Home for BBC factual digital content

BBC News has launched BBC Reel, a new video features platform that will be the global home of the BBC’s best factual digital output. For the first time, Reel brings together in one place the best of the BBC’s digital video content alongside specially made bespoke content, all from the BBC’s global network of contributors. Reel has already commissioned dozens of original videos from more than 50 filmmakers located in 40 countries.

BBC Reel will produce its own new bespoke, high-quality content with the mission to encourage audiences to look beyond their world.

Reel aims to connect viewers with people living remarkable lives around the globe, as well as showcasing inspiring and innovative ideas for the future, discovering new mysteries, and debunking hype.

Every weekday, BBC Reel will publish a themed playlist of four to five videos, combining originally produced content and the best videos from BBC verticals and brands, including BBC Travel, BBC Future, BBC Culture, and BBC Capital.

BBC Reel content will also be available on YouTube, where BBC News has 5.1 million engaged global viewers every week.

“The strength of BBC videos is their ability to bring the viewer right into the lives of people around the globe,” said Melissa Hogenboom, editor of BBC Reel. “The BBC’s truly global network of correspondents connects viewers to a staggeringly wide range of lived experience, weaving us together in a way that’s uniquely possible through the visually arresting power of video.”

As part of BBC Global News, the BBC’s international and commercial offering, BBC Reel will also offer advertisers the opportunity to advertise around the video features.


MTV announces the five nominees for EMA Best Australian Act

If Australia can be a competitor at Eurovision we should certainly also enter MTV’s European Music Awards (EMA).

With just under a month to go until the 2018 MTV EMAs take over Spain, MTV Australia has announced the five nominations for Best Australian Act.

Aussie superstars Amy Shark, Peking Duk, The Rubens, Tkay Maidza and Dean Lewis make up the five nominees all vying for the MTV EMA for Best Australian Act.

Voting is open now here and will close at 9pm AEST on Sunday October 28.

The 2018 MTV EMAs will broadcast live across MTV’s network around the globe from Bilbao exhibition centre, Spain, on Monday November 5 from 6am, only on MTV on Foxtel and Fetch.

ABC’s Exposed: Keli Lane ‘not a risk to the community’ says prosecutor

The Director of Public Prosecutions at the time of Keli Lane’s murder trial has admitted he did not believe Lane was a threat to the community, reports Fairfax Media’s Karl Quinn.

In the concluding episode of ABC’s Exposed: The Case of Keli Lane, Nicholas Cowdery conceded to journalist Caro Meldrum-Hanna that Lane was not a risk “in that she would go around killing other people’s babies”, but added that “she seemed to be a bit of a risk to the virile young male portion of the community”.

After a pause Cowdery noted, with a chuckle: “That’s not grounds for putting her in prison, of course.”

But this may not be the end of the matter. Each episode of Exposed invited viewers to send tips about the case to, and many have been forthcoming.

[Read the original]

Michelle Andrews: The Bachelorette has failed before it’s even begun

Announcing Australia’s next Bachelor and Bachelorette is kind of like announcing who’s pretending to be Prime Minister for the next 12 months, comments News Corp columnist Michelle Andrews.

Despite the importance of each position, the public has little control over who is chosen. This inevitably unleashes oodles of disappointment when we realise Network 10 / the Federal Government got it terribly wrong.

The decision to crown Ali Oetjen the country’s most eligible woman was a curious one. While the wellness influencer is aesthetically beautiful and kind – we’ve come to know that by seeing her on both Tim Robards’ season of The Bachelor, then again on Bachelor In Paradise – she’s utterly unlike the three bachelorettes who preceded her.

What endeared us to Sam Frost, Georgia Love, and Sophie Monk wasn’t that they’re perfect women. It’s that they were funny, silly, frank, and awkward – the kinds of women who fell down stairs, snorted when they laughed, and would mistakenly swear on camera.

Oetjen is the antithesis of that.

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Kerri-Anne Kennerley rips into Chaser comedian Charles Firth

Things got very heated on Studio 10 yesterday as Kerri-Anne Kennerley blasted one of The Chaser comedians for the group’s overnight prank on Alan Jones, reports’s Andrew Bucklow.

In a video released online, Chaser member Charles Firth is shown driving around Sydney and projecting an image on iconic buildings including Parliament House and the Opera House. The message said “ADVERTISE HERE: Call Alan,” and then listed Alan Jones’s personal mobile number.

“I think it’s very clever what you did for your show, but the number?” Kennerley said. “I just think that was going too far.”

Firth said The Chaser team had debated whether or not to go ahead with the stunt and said some team members thought “it was a bit of a horrible thing to do to a person”.

He then added, “But he’s (Alan Jones) been horrible to so many women.”

Kennerley took exception to that comment and said, “What a heck of absolute rubbish!”

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Acast partners with Spotify to take podcasts to streaming audience

Acast has announced a partnership with Spotify to create a new distribution channel for the 2,500+ podcasts hosted with Acast from around the world.

Popular podcasts hosted on Acast include My Dad Wrote a Porno and Watch What Crappens, as well as local content like The Osher Günsberg Podcast. Acast podcasters will now be able to distribute their shows to Spotify’s 180 million listeners within Acast’s Create podcast management system. Podcasters will automatically submit their show while maintaining the ability to monetise on all tiers of the Spotify ecosystem through Acast’s proprietary dynamic ad insertion technology.

Podcasters will now also get to see data and listening behaviour from the platform within Acast’s Create dashboard alongside similar data from the Acast app and other leading podcatchers.

Acast’s global head of content Susie Warhurst said: “At Acast, we welcome all new ways of listening to podcasts. We want our shows to be heard as widely and by as many people as possible. This partnership with Spotify will help to do that and push podcasting even more mainstream. We are so excited to be working with a fellow Swedish technology company like Spotify to offer this new distribution channel to our podcasters and welcome a new wave of listeners to our shows.”

Tory Shepherd: Alan Jones, that was not an apology

News Corp columnist Tory Shepherd comments: Alan Jones has made a mountain out of a molehill on this whole Everest saga (sorry).

Sydney’s schlockiest shock jock woke up and put on his grumpy pants last week over a plan to use the Sydney Opera House as a backdrop for a promotion of The Everest horse race barrier draw.

The 2GB star chucked a histrionics fit when Opera House chief executive Louise Herron had the temerity to suggest that projecting logos onto the cultural icon might breach their advertising policy. In an interview that he probably thought was blistering (but came across as more blithering) he said she should lose her job over her mild-mannered opposition. He even threatened to help her out the door by talking to Premier Gladys Berejiklian about her.

Then he topped the belligerence off with a classic example of a non-apology apology (also known as a “sorry not sorry”, a fauxpology, or a nopology).

“I used some words… which in hindsight I now regret, having heard the impact they have clearly had on some people,” he said. “In relation to Louise I was tough regarding an issue that I and others felt (was) very important.”

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Sports Media

Australian Open reveals Chinese sponsorship and broadcast deals

Australian Open officials announced in Shanghai last night one of the biggest sponsorship deals in its history with an aspirational Chinese distillery that dates back to The Ming Dynasty, reports The Australian’s Courtney Walsh.

At the Chinese launch of the Australian Open, which yesterday announced a record prize money pool of $60.5 million for the 2018 tournament, it was announced Luzhou Laojiao will become an associate sponsor of event billed as the grand slam of the Asia-Pacific for the next five years.

Coveted corner signage for the distillery’s high-end liquor 1573 in English and Chinese will be showcased on Rod Laver and Margaret Court Arena, while its branding will also extend across Melbourne Park throughout the Open in the space formerly occupied by Jacob’s Creek, whose association with the tournament recently ended.

Television deals with state broadcaster CCTV and provincial networks throughout China have also been negotiated, along with a digital rights deal with iQIYI that runs for another four years which allows viewers in the country the opportunity to watch the match of their choice either live or on demand.

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