Roundup: Twitter usage in US ‘fallen by a fifth’, Alone Australia, Dan Schneider responds

Elon Musk and X twitter

WSJ reporter Evan Gershkovich, Trump’s media company, Community TV channels, Mark Geyer, Matthew Richardson

Business of Media

Russian court extends WSJ reporter Evan Gershkovich’s detention

A Russian court extended the detention of Evan Gershkovich by three months, almost a year to the day since The Wall Street Journal reporter became the first US journalist to be detained there on an allegation of espionage since the end of the Cold War, reports Dow Jones’ Ann M Simmons

The 32-year-old reporter, whom the U.S. government deems wrongfully detained, has been held in Moscow’s Lefortovo Prison since March 29 last year, on an allegation that he, the Journal and the U.S. government vehemently deny.

In a closed hearing at the Moscow City Court, a judge granted the request of investigators from the Federal Security Service, or FSB, that Gershkovich remain behind bars awaiting trial until June 30.

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Twitter usage in US ‘fallen by a fifth’ since Elon Musk’s takeover

Use of Twitter in the US has slumped by more than a fifth since Elon Musk bought the site and rebranded it to X, according to data from app-monitoring company Sensor Tower, reports The Guardian’s Alex Hern.

As of February 2024, the social network’s daily app users in America had fallen by 23% since November 2022, just after Musk completed his takeover. Every other major social network experienced a reduction in the same period, but none by anywhere near X’s drop in user numbers.

The closest was TikTok, which fell by just short of 10%, while Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat all had user slumps of less than 5%, according to the data, first reported by NBC News.

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Trump’s media company soars 50% in Wall Street debut

Shares of Donald Trump‘s Trump Media & Technology Group surged nearly 50% on Tuesday in their Nasdaq debut, lifted by the former U.S. president’s supporters and providing him a potential windfall as he grapples with the costs of several legal cases, report Reuters’ Medha Singh and Yuvraj Malik.

At $74.80 per share, TMTG’s market capitalization crossed $10 billion on an undiluted basis, an astronomical valuation for a company that reported an operating loss of $10.6 million for the first nine months of 2023 on revenue of just $3.4 million.

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Television

‘Apology not accepted’: Fallout from allegations against kids TV producer Dan Schneider continues

The American kids TV industry was thrown into a tailspin in March upon the US release of Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids Television, reports the ABC’s Velvet Winter.

The four-part documentary featured interviews with multiple former Nickelodeon child stars and employees who shared the unsavoury and sometimes illegal practices that were rife on the set of Dan Schneider productions such as iCarly, Zoey 101, All That and Drake & Josh.

Two days after the series premiered, Schneider broke his silence by posting a 19-minute interview to YouTube.

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The bow & arrow season of Alone Australia

When Alone producers learned they could use a bow and arrow at a New Zealand location it soon became very clear where a second season of the hit SBS series would film, reports TV Tonight.

“It’s a lot trickier in in parts of Australia to be able to hunt with bow and arrow freely on on land, whereas in New Zealand hunting is done a lot by locals,” says Executive Producer Riima Daher.

“There are lots of people, especially on the South Island, who sustain themselves in an urban environment who will go out and hunt deer and basically have that entire deer butchered and it will provide their food source until they run out and hunt again. And same with fishing. So it’s quite accepted.”

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Govt ends uncertainty for Community TV channels

The Australian Community Television Alliance has welcomed the Federal Government’s passing of the Broadcasting Services Amendment (Community Television) Bill 2024, reports TV Tonight.

The Bill repeals previous legislation, under which both stations’ broadcasting licences were due to expire on 30 June this year. Now, C44 Adelaide and C31 Melbourne and Geelong will continue broadcasting until an alternative use for the radiofrequency spectrum they use has been confirmed by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

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Sports Media

‘My baby’s playing for the club I love’: Mark Geyer’s emotional tribute to son

Mark Geyer admits he was reduced to tears as he spread the news of his son’s expected NRL debut to friends and family over the past couple of days, reports Nine Publishing’s Michael Chammas.

In an emotional tribute before Mavrik Geyer’s first NRL game for Penrith against the Roosters on Thursday night, Panthers legend Geyer snr has revealed his son knocked back an approach from Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy to stay at his junior club.

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Richo fires back over Cotchin, Selwood dig

Tigers great Matthew Richardson has responded to rival commentator Kane Cornes “taking the piss” out of his Channel Seven colleagues, reports News Corp’s Jackie Epstein.

On Sunday, Cornes used a segment on The Sunday Footy Show to highlight Seven’s Talking Footy, which features Trent Cotchin and Joel Selwood.

He prefaced it by saying to “take it in the right way, we take the mickey out of ourselves”, but Richardson didn’t see the funny side and went in to bat for his own.

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