Roundup: Threads grows faster than ChatGPT, Industry round table, AFLW broadcast

Meta's threads

Twitter traffic sinks, The New York Times, BBC, Amanda Keller, Sam Pang

Business of Media

Industry execs to gather for Diversity round table

An impressive roll-call of television executives will join an industry-first round table this Friday, for a discussion about improving diversity, inclusion and equity, reports TV Tonight.

Convened by Media Diversity Australia at SBS’s headquarters in Artarmon, the event sees Minister for Communications, Michelle Rowland, joined by all eleven MDA members, which include Free to Air public and commercial broadcasters.

Attending are:

SBS’s Managing Director James Taylor
Nine’s CEO Mike Sneesby
10’s Executive Vice President, Chief Content Officer & Head of Paramount, Beverley McGarvey
Seven’s Chief People and Culture Officer Lucinda Gemmell
ABC’s Chief Content Officer, Chris Oliver-Taylor

Plus: News Corp Australia’s Chief Financial Officer, Michael Murphy, AAP’s editor Andrew Drummond, The Guardian Australia’s editor Lenore Taylor, Private Media Group’s CEO Will Hayward, The Conversation Group’s CEO Lisa Watts and The Daily Aus Co Founders Zara Seidler and Sam Koslowski.

Also attending are MDA Founder and Chair, Isabel Lo, and executives from Screen Diversity and Inclusion Network, Diversity Arts Australia and Free TV to commit to a path forward to deliver change needed as an industry.

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Meta’s Twitter rival Threads surges to 100 million users faster than ChatGPT

Meta Platforms’ Twitter rival Threads crossed 100 million sign-ups within five days of launch, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said on Monday, dethroning ChatGPT as the fastest-growing online platform to hit the milestone, report Reuters’ Katie Paul and Akash Sriram.

Threads has been setting records for user growth since its launch on Wednesday, with celebrities, politicians and other newsmakers joining the platform that is seen by analysts as the first serious threat to the Elon Musk-owned microblogging app.

“That’s mostly organic demand, and we haven’t even turned on many promotions yet,” Zuckerberg said in a Threads post announcing the milestone.

The app’s sprint to 100 million users was much speedier than that of OpenAI-owned ChatGPT, which became the fastest-growing consumer application in history in January about two months after its launch, according to a UBS study.

Twitter had nearly 240 million monetizable daily active users as of July last year, according to the company’s last public disclosure before Musk’s takeover, although data from web analytics companies indicates usage has dropped since then.

[Read More]

See Also: Inside Threads: How media companies have latched on to Meta’s Twitter competitor
See Also: With 10 million sign-ups in seven hours, what does Threads mean for advertisers and creators?

Twitter traffic sinks in wake of changes and launch of rival platform Threads

Twitter’s website traffic is “tanking” according to the chief of internet services company Cloudflare, amid signs users are migrating to alternative platforms such as Threads, BlueSky and Mastodon, report The Guardian’s Josh Taylor and Josh Nicholas.

On Sunday, Matthew Prince posted a graph from Cloudflare’s ranking of the most popular websites in the world showing Twitter has been in decline since the start of 2023, not long after Elon Musk took over the platform.

The graph shows a significant drop in Cloudflare’s domain server ranking for Twitter in mid-2023 coincided with unpopular changes Musk made to the site, and the launch of the Meta-owned rival platform Threads.

At the end of June, Musk tweeted that Twitter had hit an all-time record in “user seconds”.

In early July, Twitter began forcing people to log in to view tweets. It also set a rate limit for the number of posts different account tiers could read each day – initially 6,000 for paying users and 600 for non-paying users. Musk said the changes were introduced to curb attempts to scrape the website.

The limit has since been increased, and Twitter removed the login requirement last week. The Guardian received the customary auto-reply of a poop emoji when comment was sought from Twitter.

[Read More]

News Brands

The New York Times to disband its sports department

The New York Times said on Monday that it would disband its sports department and rely on coverage of teams and games from its website The Athletic, both online and in print, reports The New York Times’ Katie Robertson and John Koblin.

Joe Kahn, The Times’s executive editor, and Monica Drake, a deputy managing editor, announced the change to the newsroom as “an evolution in how we cover sports.”

“We plan to focus even more directly on distinctive, high-impact news and enterprise journalism about how sports intersect with money, power, culture, politics and society at large,” the editors wrote in an email to The Times’s newsroom on Monday morning. “At the same time, we will scale back the newsroom’s coverage of games, players, teams and leagues.”

The shuttering of the sports desk, which has more than 35 reporters and editors, is a major shift for The Times. The department’s coverage of games, athletes and team owners, and its Sports of The Times column in particular, were once a pillar of American sports journalism. The section covered the major moments and personalities of the last century of American sports, including Muhammad Ali, the birth of free agency, George Steinbrenner, the Williams sisters, Tiger Woods, steroids in baseball and the deadly effects of concussions in the National Football League.

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BBC sex photo claims are ‘rubbish’, lawyer for young person tells broadcaster

Allegations that an unnamed BBC presenter paid a young person to pose for explicit photos are “rubbish”, a lawyer acting for the young person has told the broadcaster in a letter, reports Reuters.

British media has been gripped in recent days by a report in The Sun newspaper that cited the young person’s mother as saying the presenter paid the now 20-year-old £35,000 ($67,000) for photos over three years beginning when they were 17.

The presenter, who has not been named by the BBC or The Sun newspaper, was suspended on Sunday following the claims.

The BBC reported on Monday, however, that a lawyer for the young person had written to the broadcaster stating that the allegation was “rubbish”.

The lawyer said the young person sent a denial to The Sun newspaper on Friday evening, when it first published the allegation, saying there was “no truth” to it, the BBC said.

A spokesperson for Rupert Murdoch’s The Sun tabloid said in response to the BBC report: “We have reported a story about two very concerned parents who made a complaint to the BBC about the behaviour of a presenter and the welfare of their child.

“Their complaint was not acted upon by the BBC. We have seen evidence that supports their concerns.

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Former Gold Logie nominee Amanda Keller reveals shock snub: ‘Not invited’

She scored a coveted Gold Logie nomination in 2019 – but popular TV and radio host Amanda Keller has revealed she isn’t even invited to this year’s awards ceremony, reports News Corp’s Bronte Coy.

Keller, 61, made the stunning announcement on WSFM’s Jonesy and Amanda show on Monday morning, leaving her co-host utterly gobsmacked.

“Two Logies ago, I was nominated for Gold – I’m not invited this year,” she told a stunned Brendan “Jonesy” Jones.

“Hang on a minute … You’re not even invited?” he asked.

“I wasn’t expecting to be nominated, but I wasn’t invited,” Keller admitted, before insisting that she was “happy not to go”.

“It’s a hard night, isn’t it? You’ve got to wear Spanx, and all the clothes fittings and stuff, and all that stuff … So I’m going to be doing what I usually do, which is watch it on TV and probably go to bed at about 9.30pm.”

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Sam Pang denies joining I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here

Another week, another Sam Pang rumour, but this time one he has shot down. Speaking on Have You Been Paying Attention? last night the ever-popular comedian denied a magazine rumour he will replace Dr. Chris Brown on 10’s I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here, reports TV Tonight.

Asked if he was a fan of the show, Pang said, “A lot of my friends are on that show and host that show. So I want to be diplomatic and say no.

“Obviously, it seems unlikely.

“I’ve gone off South Africa ever since they ended apartheid,” he joked.

HYBPA? host Tom Glesiner checked, “Just to confirm, no truth to the rumour?”

“None!” Pang insisted.

[Read More]

Sports Media

‘The broadcast was almost unwatchable’: The insiders’ view on why Australia switched off AFLW

The timeslots for games, football fatigue and poor broadcast quality are three of the myriad reasons that leading AFLW figures say are behind the dramatic decline in TV ratings and crowds for women’s football, reports Nine Publishing’s Marnie Vinall.

Last week, this masthead revealed the AFL presented club chiefs with figures showing television ratings for the AFLW are down 70 per cent on season one and crowds are down 60 per cent amid collective bargaining agreement negotiations in which players are demanding more games.

According to the AFL’s presentation, TV audiences for AFLW have fallen from an average of 180,000 per match in the competition’s first season (2017) to just over 53,000 for season seven. The seventh season was the second AFLW season played in 2022 and overlapped with the men’s finals series of that year.

TV ratings for the Women’s Big Bash League overtook AFLW in 2021 despite a decline for the cricket league last year when it coincided with the men’s T20 World Cup.

Even then, the WBBL attracted an average audience per free-to-air match of 174,000 compared with 91,000 for AFLW games, according to figures provided by Cricket Australia, which still paint a rosier picture for AFLW than those presented to AFL club chiefs.

[Read More]

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