Roundup: Lehrmann ruling, How the Bondi stabbing was covered, Bluey

Bruce Lehrmann - Walkley, Seven

Chatbot Instagram influencers, News Corp drafts in PwC, New York Times, Big Screen Video, Which game show pays out more prize money?

Business of Media

Ten let Lisa Wilkinson down over Logies speech, says judge in Lehrmann ruling

Network Ten’s conduct before Lisa Wilkinson’s infamous 2022 Logies speech was “grossly improper and unjustifiable” and the veteran broadcaster was let down by her employer’s actions, the judge presiding over the Bruce Lehrmann defamation case has found, reports Nine Publishing’s Calum Jaspan.

Ten was largely vindicated in Justice Michael Lee’s ruling on Monday, with its truth defence proving on the balance of probabilities that Lehrmann raped former Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins in Parliament House in 2019.

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See Also: Bruce Lehrmann loses defamation case against 10 and Lisa Wilkinson

Taking out the Bruce Lehrmann trash

Rare are the times when the news cycle is so inundated that a savvy operator can dump their rubbish unseen, reports Nine Publishing’s Mark Di Stefano.

Some 30 minutes into Justice Michael Lee‘s more than two-hour judgment on Monday, Seven’s external spokesman, Neil Shoebridge, sent an email to reporters confirming what had been in papers; that “for the avoidance of doubt” Spotlight’s executive producer, Mark Llewellyn, “no longer works for the Seven network”.

To reiterate the sheer toxicity of it all, Seven’s Bruce Lehrmann exposé has now scalped all three producer-journalists at the centre of the network’s disgraceful “scoop”.

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Jacqui Felgate: Media must reflect on how Bondi Junction stabbing spree was covered

Jacqui Felgate says sections of the media should reflect on their “rush to be first” covering the violent stabbling spree at Westfield Bondi Junction on Saturday, reports 3AW.

The 3AW Drive host called out media coverage in the days since the attack, which has sought to highlight the famous fathers of two women who died during the attack.

“I think us in the media need to look back at ourselves at times like this,” she said. “We need to understand these women are more than the sum of their fathers. In the rush to be first, we forget the very human element to a crime like this.”

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Ready for a chatbot version of your favorite Instagram influencers?

Being an influencer can be a lot of work. Instagram thinks A.I. can lend a big hand, report The New York Times’ Sapna Maheshwari and Mike Isaac.

Instagram is pitching popular influencers on a program that relies on artificial intelligence to interact with fans, the latest example of how Meta, Instagram’s parent company, is trying to expand the technology across its products.

The program, which is in its early stages of testing and known as “Creator A.I.,” would allow influencers to chat with fans through direct messages on the social network and potentially through Instagram comments in the future, according to five people briefed on the company’s plans. The program will essentially be a chatbot that mimics the “voice” of the Instagram influencer to respond to fans, the people said.

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News Brands

News Corp drafts in PwC as it deals with Meta cash hole

News Corp has tapped PwC Australia to help with its biggest restructure of the last decade as it seeks to deal with Meta ripping tens of millions of dollars out of the Australian news market, report Nine Publishing’s Max Mason and Sam Buckingham-Jones.

On Monday, The Australian Financial Review revealed News Corp Australia was planning about $15 million in cuts to offset the weak advertising market and deal with no new revenue from Meta, and a flat – or lower – contribution from a renewal with Google.

PwC has previously been used by News Corp when it reviewed the publisher’s plan to cease printing 112 community and regional newspapers, and transition 76 to digital-only.

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New York Times ends probe into leak over Gaza coverage without conclusive finding

The New York Times ended its investigation into whether staffers leaked confidential information about its Gaza war coverage without any conclusive finding, Executive Editor Joe Kahn told staff Monday, reports the Wall Street Journal’s Alexandra Bruell.

The company began its investigation after nonprofit news organization the Intercept reported that the Times had shelved an episode of its Daily podcast after internal debate. The episode focused on a controversial Times story by Jeffrey Gettleman and freelancers that found Hamas had weaponized sexual violence in its attacks on Israel on Oct. 7.

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Outdoor advertising play Big Screen Video lights up for investors

Adelaide-based Big Screen Video, a provider of end-to-end LED display solutions, is flaunting its deep relationships with out-of-home advertising bigwigs such as France’s JCDecaux and home-grown oOh!media as it hunts for a backer to buy a controlling stake, report Nine Publishing’s Sarah Thompson, Kanika Sood and Emma Rapaport.

Street Talk understands the company has hired boutique corporate adviser Australian Equity Partners to shop a raise at a $50 million enterprise valuation of which $18 million would be tied to aggressive earnouts through to the 2026 financial year.

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Bluey 28-minute finale special The Sign a hit with viewers

It was exactly the show Australia needed on Sunday, with the epic 28-minute Bluey special watched by a national average audience of 2.28 million people on its launch, reports News Corp’s Kathy McCabe.

The Sign, which runs four times the length of a normal Bluey episode, featured a wedding and the emotional rollercoaster of Bluey’s family as their home was listed for sale.

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Which game show pays out more prize money?

Deal or No Deal gave away more money in prizes than Tipping Point or The Chase last week, reports TV Tonight.

TV Tonight chose a week at random to see which afternoon game show was likely to give away the most money.

Last week all three gave away single prizes of $40,000 or more, but it was 10’s Grant Denyer-hosted game show which gave away the most overall.

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