Roundup: Eurovision, Twitter closes Aus office, NFL streaming service


• Plus One America News, UM Australia, Polar, Natalie Barr, Hunted, Neighbours

Business of Media

Twitter closing Australian office, staff to work from home

Twitter is closing its Australian office, which had once occupied a whole floor of an office tower in Sydney’s CBD, as the short-form social network champions its flexible workplace policy, reports Nine Publishing’s Nick Bonyhady.

A source close to Twitter, who was not authorised to talk publicly, said staff had been told they would be working from home indefinitely because the office was closing.

A Twitter spokesman said: “No decision has been made”, emphasising that the company’s commitment to its Australian staff, customers, business and users was strong. It will consult with staff about future property plans.

Property industry sources said Twitter’s lease was due to expire at the end of August and renewing it would have cost up to $1400per square metre, or about $2.8 million a year for the full floor, at a time when the company has been cutting costs.

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News Brands

Major blow for One America News as Verizon Fios drops network

Verizon Fios will no longer carry One America News (OAN) at the end of this month, dealing a major blow to the far-right television network that has become a hotbed of misinformation, reports The Guardian’s Sam Levine.

Verizon was the largest pay-TV provider still carrying the OAN, according to the Daily Beast, which first reported the network was getting dropped. Verizon and OAN were unable to reach an agreement to continue providing the network and customers will not be able to access the service after 30 July.

The development means that OAN in effect will not have a major television platform in the US. DirecTV, a major revenue provider for OAN, announced that it was dropping the network in April.

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UM Australia partners with Clean Up Australia on global IMPACT Day

UM Australia has partnered with Clean Up Australia and participated in its fifth IMPACT Day.

On July 21, all UM offices put down the tools and closed for the day to take time out to take part in the agency’s annual day of service representing two of its core values: Care and Community.

Over the span of 36 hours, across 50 Countries, 100+ markets and 120+ offices, more than 3,000 UM volunteers gathered within their respective communities to make an impact toward a #BetterWorld.

After two years of celebrating IMPACT Day virtually, due to COVID, the official theme for this year was Homecoming, celebrating the opportunity for UM’s global community to finally come together in person and to make a positive difference.

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Polar announces its rebrand to Nova and the launch of its CTV offering

Polar, the industry leader in social display advertising, announced it has changed its name to Nova, previously the operating name of its agency-focused business.

The new Nova banner will serve the company’s entire client base, including publishers, agencies, brands, ad tech platforms, CTV providers, and retail media.

Nova is also launching CTV and other new video formats that go beyond social display. The move is part of a larger strategy to expand the company’s creative automation platform, seeking to maximize the value of creative assets, particularly as advertisers face increasing challenges with data and targeting.

Lastly, Nova has recently received a significant investment from Fort Point Capital, a Boston-based private equity fund with experience investing in growing marketing and technology businesses.

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United Kingdom confirmed as Eurovision 2023 hosts

It’s official. The United Kingdom will host the 2023 Eurovision Song Contest on behalf of this year’s winning broadcaster, Ukraine’s UA:PBC, reports TV Tonight.

The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and the BBC confirmed the news with the Host City bidding contest to begin this week.

The unsurprising news follows confirmation that 2022 winners Ukraine could not be considered a safe destination.

The BBC, as runner up was invited by the EBU to act as Host Broadcaster -the first time for the UK since 1998.

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Sunrise host Natalie Barr absent from program after catching Covid

Viewers have been given an explanation as to why Sunrise host Natalie Barr has been missing from the program for over a week, reports News Corp’s Duncan Murray.

Fellow presenter David Koch revealed on Monday the 54-year-old is isolating at home after catching Covid-19.

Following a scheduled absence to visit family in Perth last week – during which Kylie Gillies filled in for her at the desk – fans of the show were expecting Barr to return to their screens on Monday.

Instead, Monique Wright stepped in to co-host Monday’s show, with her and Kochie left to explain Barr’s absence.

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Hunted: Forensic psychologist Dr Karla Lopez on her role in 10’s hit new reality series

As one of Australia’s top forensic psychologists, Dr Karla Lopez is an expert on what makes people — particularly criminals — tick, reports News Corp’s Zoe Smith.

It’s a skill set she’s bringing to the fore as one of the leading experts on 10’s new hit TV reality TV series Hunted, pitched by the network as “Australia’s real life game of cat and mouse”.

In the fly-on-the wall series, Dr Lopez, who has worked for Victoria Police and the Department of Justice, is one of the show’s expert hunters — an elite team chasing 18 fugitives who are aiming to evade capture for 21 days in order to win a share of $100,000.

When it comes to evading capture, there’s one common tool, Dr Lopez says, that gives real-life people, as well as TV fugitives, away every time.

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Ryan Moloney is planning life after Neighbours in an unusual field

It’s a plot twist that would make Neighbours writers proud: Ryan Moloney, who plays hot shot solicitor Toadie Rebecchi on the Ramsay St soap, is dumping law to drive trucks, reports News Corp’s Nui Te Koha.

Moloney is doing a civil construction course as part of his future plan after Neighbours takes its final bow, after 37 years on air, later this week.

“I’m not ruling anything out,” Moloney said. “I’m doing civil construction course which is about driving excavators and building roads.

“I like playing with those kinds of machines. I like doing earthworks, all that kind of manual labour stuff. That’s where I’m at, but who knows where it’s all going to end up?”

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Sports Media

NFL+ enters sports streaming wars as league launches new service

The NFL wants a piece of the streaming action. In a launch that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell is calling “an important day in the history of the National Football League,” the TV juggernaut is launching a streaming offering called NFL+ on Monday, hoping to entice fans to subscribe with features built around smartphones and tablets, reports The Hollywood Reporter’s Alex Weprin.

The first game available on NFL+ will be the Hall of Fame Game on August 4, featuring the Jacksonville Jaguars and Las Vegas Raiders.

NFL+ will have two subscription tiers, a base tier for $4.99 per month ($39.99 per year) that includes live local and national primetime games on mobile devices, and out-of-market pre-season games on all devices. The service will also include home, away and national game live audio for every game of the season, and some NFL library programming.

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