Roundup: Michael Clarke fallout, Spare out sold, misinformation laws

Michael Clarke

Cameron Williams, SBS WorldWatch, Cricket Australia Amazon series, Fox v FIFA

Business of Media

Government introduces laws to protect Australians from online misinformation

The federal government will give the media regulator new legislative powers in an attempt to reduce the spread of misinformation and disinformation on global technology platforms such as Twitter, YouTube and Facebook, reports Nine Publishing’s Zoe Samios

Communications Minister Michelle Rowland is planning to introduce laws that will give Australia’s media watchdog the ability to retract information from the world’s most powerful tech companies if they fail to meet standards of a voluntary misinformation and disinformation code of practice.

The previous government, under then communications minister Paul Fletcher, attempted to introduce the same laws but did not do so before the 2022 federal election.

Under the proposed laws, which are expected to be legislated by the end of this year, the ACMA will have the power legally to request information from tech platforms such as Meta, Google and Twitter such as data on complaints handling and how they manage the spread of harmful content.

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Clarke bracing for hip pocket pain as fracas sends deal up in smoke

A wild skirmish on the Sunshine Coast is set to deliver the former Australian cricketing hero Michael Clarke a hip pocket blow far more painful than the now infamous slap landed by estranged partner Jade Yarbrough, report Nine Publishing’s Andrew Hornery, Zoe Samios, Carrie Fellner and Jocelyn Garcia.

The Herald and The Age can reveal the collateral damage has already begun after Clarke’s romantic entanglements exploded in a blazing row in a Noosa park, ending a prospective sponsorship deal with a skincare brand within hours of footage of the incident going public on Wednesday.

Several other lucrative contracts hang in the balance, including the former cricket captain’s six-figure commentary gig for Australia’s upcoming Test tour of India.

The drama unfolded while the couple were holidaying at Noosa Heads with Yarbrough’s sister, Jasmine, and her husband, television personality Karl Stefanovic.

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See Also: The Slap: How News Corp made the most of Michael Clarke v Karl Stefanovic

Australian media reacts to Michael Clarke and Karl Stefanovic’s wild public showdown

Veteran radio host Ray Hadley kept it simple when it came to offering advice for the recently embattled Michael Clarke, telling the cricket legend to “keep it in your pants, son”, reports News Corp’s William Tyson.

“If I were to give advice to a 41-year-old male adult, who I don’t know … it would be along the lines of ‘keep it in your pants son’,” the 2GB broadcaster said.

The media world couldn’t help but react to the viral video, obtained by The Daily Telegraph, which shows Australian icons Michael Clarke and Karl Stefanovic caught up in a wild showdown with their partners in a public park.

Hadley’s colleague, Ben Fordham, also spoke against the cricketer before defending his Channel Nine ally Karl Stefanovic.

“Karl Stefanovic’s name has been dragged into it because he happened to be there, and Michael Clarke turned on Karl too,” he said.

“Really, really disgraceful language that was used by Michael Clarke, as far as I can see it has nothing to do with Karl apart from the fact that he was there.”

Fordham finished by suggesting to Michael Clarke that he should clean his dirty laundry.

“It’s between Michael Clarke and his girlfriends.”

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Prince Harry’s memoir Spare out sold by Aussie favourite author

Prince Harry’s controversial memoir Spare was unable to rival a favourite Aussie writer in its first week of sales, reports News Corp’s Madeleine Achenza.

Spare has sold 64,148 copies in Australia since it launched on January 11, according to Nielsen Bookscan figures released on Thursday.

However, the highly-anticipated book release was unable to beat Barefoot Investor Scott Pape’s Barefoot Kids, which was released in November 2022 and sold 128,641 in its first week of sales.

His 2018 instalment, The Barefoot Investor For Families, sold 74,602 copies in its first week.

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Former TV sports presenter Cameron Williams to fight assault charges

Former Channel Nine sports presenter Cameron Williams will face court to fight claims he assaulted his wife on their rural property, reports News Corp’s Adelaide Lang.

The 59-year-old is due to appear in Singleton Local Court on Friday after he pleaded not guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm and common assault.

Police allege he assaulted his wife Natasha Russo at a property on Putty Road in Howes Valley between 8.30am and just after midnight on November 19 last year.

According to police allegations, the pair had been drinking that evening when they got into an argument at their home in the Hunter Valley.

Williams allegedly grabbed his wife by the arm and shoved her before police were called to the property just before 1am on November 20.

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Eight months of SBS’ sixth TV channel, WorldWatch

When SBS managing director James Taylor unveiled the broadcaster’s sixth television channel last May, he said the goal was to serve “small, but important” audiences, reports Nine Publishing’s Zoe Samios.

Eight months since it went live off the back of a $29 million federal funding injection, SBS WorldWatch’s audience appears non-existent. Data from the TV ratings provider OzTAM shows an average share of 0 per cent – a rounding error that occurs because the audience measured is so small between 6pm and midnight (the peak TV watching period).

WorldWatch aggregates international news bulletins from broadcasters such as South Korea’s YTN, France’s 20 Heures and Portugal’s RTP. It also broadcasts nightly Arabic and Mandarin news bulletins produced by a staff of 18 working out of the broadcaster’s Sydney studios.

The idea, Taylor said in May, was to provide a better service for small but growing audiences in Australia.

Despite the bulletins being “resource-intensive” (according to SBS presenter Ali Bahnasawy), they are struggling to attract viewers from Australia’s two largest non-English language groups. The average nightly national audience for the Arabic bulletin is about 151 viewers while about 858 people tune in for the Mandarin bulletin, according to overnight data from measurement provider OzTAM that has tracked the performance since launch.

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Sports Media

Why there will never be a Last Dance for Australian cricket

Don’t expect there ever to be a Last Dance or Get Back style reimagining of the fly-on-the-wall access granted to the Australian men’s team over the past few years, reports Nine Publishing’s Daniel Brettig.

Twenty years from now, should filmmakers go digging around the archives for uncut footage from the Amazon series about the Australian men’s team from 2018 to 2022, they will struggle to find any.

That’s because, unless there is a secret hard drive buried in a backyard somewhere, the hundreds of surplus hours of filming by the project’s primary cinematographer Andre Mauger have been destroyed.

This was done by mutual agreement between the filmmakers and Cricket Australia, on the basis that neither party wanted to see unused footage in the wrong hands, or cherry-picked out of context.

So the extra footage of countless meetings, training sessions and dressing-room reactions to undulations on the field of play from the period will never be glimpsed at any point in the future.

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Witness says Fox execs in US conspired to bribe Fifa officials over TV rights

The US government’s star witness in a corruption trial over the broadcasting rights to some of soccer’s biggest events testified Wednesday how he and two former Fox executives paid millions of dollars in bribes to undermine competing bids, reports Associated Press.

The trial in New York City is the latest development in a tangled corruption scandal that dates back nearly a decade and has ensnared more than three dozen executives and associates in the world’s most popular sport.

The witness, Alejandro Burzaco, alleges that he and former Fox executives Hernan Lopez and Carlos Martinez conspired to bribe South American soccer officials for the TV rights to the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest annual tournament, the Copa Libertadores, and help land broadcasting rights to the sport’s most lucrative competition, the World Cup.

“The bribes fulfilled that purpose extremely well,” Burzaco testified.

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