Roundup: TikTok begins removing UMP content, Meta plans launch of new AI language model, Block stars finally sell home

TikTok Logo - 10 Jan 2024

Southern Cross, Network 10, Netflix, Google, Zachary Rolfe, The Summit, Australia’s Test series

Business of Media

Southern Cross hopes result bolsters suitor ARN Media’s offer

The media sector is under close watch this week as broadcaster and takeover target Southern Cross Media Group delivers its half-year result on Thursday, and moves by global giants create ripples across Asia Pacific operations, reports The Australian’s Bridget Carter.

The understanding is that Southern Cross, which broadcasts television in the regions and radio through the Triple M and Hit radio networks, hopes to prove why it is worth more than what ARN Media is offering in its cash and scrip bid – although it will stop short of rejecting its offer.

The Jefferies-advised ARN Media and Anchorage Capital Partners last year had offered about $239m for regional radio and television broadcaster Southern Cross, in what was a highly complex deal that involves the swapping of assets between ARN Media and ACP to appease regulators.

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Channel 10’s heart-wrenching tribute to murdered host Jesse Baird

Network 10 has aired a heartbreaking tribute to former colleague Jesse Baird, whose remains were found alongside the body of Luke Davies after allegedly being murdered and buried in regional NSW last week, reports News Corp.

Sandra Sully introduced the tribute, her voice breaking with emotion, as she called on the public to remember Jesse as a talented, loving young man.

“We want to pay tribute to our friend and former colleague Jesse Baird, his murder alongside that of his partner Luke Davies has rocked Network 10. Our hearts go out to their family and friends,” Sully began.

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See Also: Tributes flow for former Studio 10 presenter Jesse Baird and partner Luke Davies

TikTok begins removing Universal Music Publishing content after deal stalemate

TikTok has begun removing Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) content from the video app as it failed to reach a new licensing agreement with the music label, the social media firm said on Tuesday, reports Reuters.

TikTok has also started to mute videos on its platform that feature songs written by any songwriter signed on to UMPG, after removing the songs from Universal Music Group, opens new tab, as the licensing deal expired on Jan. 31.

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Netflix names Dan Lin its top movie executive

Netflix said on Wednesday that the producer Dan Lin would replace Scott Stuber as the streaming company’s top film executive, reports The New York Times’ Nicole Sperling.

Stuber was the head of Netflix Film for seven years before announcing last month that he would be leaving. During his tenure, he brought a bevy of Oscar-winning filmmakers to Netflix and helped the company push the rest of the entertainment industry into the streaming era.

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Google sued for $2.3bn by European media groups over digital ad losses

Alphabet’s Google was hit with a €2.1bn ($2.3bn) lawsuit by 32 media groups including Axel Springer and Schibsted on Wednesday, alleging that they had suffered losses due to the company’s practices in digital advertising, reports The Guardian.

The move by the groups – which include publishers in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain and Sweden – comes as antitrust regulators also crack down on Google’s ad-tech business.

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Meta plans launch of new AI language model Llama 3 in July

Meta Platforms, opens new tab is planning to release the newest version of its artificial-intelligence large language model Llama 3 in July which would give better responses to contentious questions posed by users, The Information reported on Wednesday, reports Reuters.

Meta researchers are trying to “loosen up” the model so that it could at least provide context to a query it deems controversial.

The effort, which would boost the usefulness of Meta’s new LLM, comes as rival Google, paused the image-generation feature on its Gemini AI after it produced historical images which were sometimes inaccurate.

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News Brands

News Corp journalist offered to write article defending Zachary Rolfe two days after he shot Kumanjayi Walker dead, court hears

A journalist at The Australian told Zachary Rolfe only two days after he shot and killed Kumanjayi Walker that she could “write an article in your defence” because “I know what you did was totally warranted”, a court has heard, reports The Guardian’s Nino Bucci.

Journalist Kristin Shorten, who Rolfe said was a friend because her partner was a fellow police officer, texted Rolfe in November 2019 asking if he was OK after the incident and telling him to “ignore the leftist reporting”, the inquest into Walker’s death heard on Wednesday.

Rolfe shot Walker three times while trying to arrest him in Yuendumu, about 300km from Alice Springs. The 19-year-old Warlpiri man stabbed Rolfe with a pair of scissors shortly before he was shot by the then constable three times.

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The Block stars Leah and Ash finally sell home after Channel 9 auction

After a dismal The Block auction outcome for Leah and Ash, the couple’s home has finally sold, reports News Corp’s Lexie Cartwright.

The house they built in Hampton East, Victoria, was the only property not to sell during the Channel 9 show finale in November.

After two months on the market, the Brisbane couple’s ‘House 2’ has gone for $3.125 million, netting them a decent $155,000 profit.

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Sweden picks up The Summit

Aussie format The Summit has its first European deal with Sweden’s TV4 commissioning a local adaptation, reports TV Tonight.

The series created by Endemol Shine Australia and Nine has previously sold to CBS in the U.S.

A second season coming to Nine later this year has already been filmed in New Zealand.

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Sports Media

Wikiti! Why you’ll see Maori words on your TV during Australia’s Test series

When the first batter is dismissed at Basin Reserve on Thursday, viewers will see a graphic that not only says “wicket” but also “wikiti”, the Maori translation of the term, reports Nine Publishing’s Daniel Brettig.

It’s part of a concerted effort by the broadcaster TVNZ and New Zealand cricket authorities to make the game as inclusive as possible in the island nation, while also fulfilling their roles under the longstanding Treaty of Waitangi.

The dualism of English and Māori language in New Zealand public life has been a subject of debate since the election of a new, conservative government last year, with an “English first” policy pushed by Prime Minister Chris Luxon in coalition with the New Zealand First party.

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