Multi Channel Network (MCN) has announced the launch of Smarthub – its new proprietary platform that will facilitate the trading, tracking and reporting of automated bookings for broadcast linear TV.
The platform, which is now available to all agency groups across the country, will provide ease of transaction for bookings across MCN’s linear subscription and FTA television channels, plus digital video platforms. MCN represents both Foxtel and Network Ten.
To begin, Smarthub will facilitate programmatic TV (PTV) trading on the Foxtel network, replacing the current AOL platform used to book and trade subscription TV campaigns. Programmatic TV bookings will be available to be booked against 40 targeted behavioural segments from Multiview – MCN’s 200,000 home audience panel as well as via OzTAM demographics. Smarthub is the only platform in market with the ability to transact both currencies.
Future capabilities for Smarthub will include digital video inventory utilising Multiview segments and programmatic trading on Network Ten’s digital channels.
MCN chief sales and marketing officer Mark Frain (pictured) said Smarthub was the next milestone in MCN’s legacy as a market leader of innovative solutions as it’s currently the only platform able to offer true PTV trading in broadcast linear TV not only locally, but globally.
“Smarthub aims to help accelerate the adoption of automated trading, which is fast becoming the growth area for Australia’s media sector as clients can receive both the data segmentation and trading delivery benefits from digital, plus the mass scale and reach of linear broadcast television,” he said.
“With the increasing concerns around brand safety on video-based platforms, and tech vendors retreating from supply-side trading platforms, the solution also ensures the market can continue trading TV efficiently through a secure and locally produced portal.”
Smarthub, MCN’s third platform launch to market in the PTV space, has been designed to connect MCN to its buy-side customers using a simple and interactive interface built in collaboration with IPONWEB, a leading AI, data and engineering company.
MCN chief technology and systems operations officer Angela Goodsir said the development of the platform was testament to MCN’s commitment to provide first-to-market products for the industry that truly change the way we transact media bookings.
“MCN has a strong pedigree in building PTV platforms for broadcast linear inventory, and so developing Smarthub was a natural expansion of our automation roadmap,” she said. “With our strong innovation credentials in this space we are ensuring agencies and clients can progress their automation journey for broadcast linear TV.
“The platform will allow brands to connect with highly targeted audiences and move away from blunt age/gender demographics for subscription broadcast linear TV and then, ultimately, free-to-air digital channels and digital video, all within one system. The platform’s local roots will also ensure we can be agile and meet the market’s ever changing needs quickly and effectively.”
Goodsir added the partnership with IPONWEB afforded great opportunities to explore further advancements in the automation space.
“IPONWEB has outstanding credentials, being well recognised as a global leader in programmatic real-time ad technology and infrastructure,” she said. “This capability means MCN has the potential for integration and connectivity into the digital mindset and ecosystem for further advanced advertising models for broadcast. The agile delivery and flexibility of our partnership has also enabled the platform to be up and running within a record-breaking 12 weeks.”
A key foundation partner of MCN’s PTV offering, Dentsu Aegis Network’s programmatic and buying arm Amnet, has been trading PTV with MCN since 2015. National managing director for Amnet, Indy Khabra, welcomed the launch of Smarthub as automated buying is driving more surety in market as well as reducing wastage.
“Automation helps brands better connect with their consumers in a highly targeted fashion and investment into systems that will help expand this thinking to broadcast linear TV is a huge step in driving the growth of this trading model,” he said. “In the time we’ve been working with MCN we’ve seen huge success – for example a retail campaign executed at Christmas saw a return of $19 for every dollar spent on Foxtel. Results like these only demonstrate the strength of automation for linear TV and the launch of MCN’s Smarthub portal is another milestone we are pleased to be partnering with.”
By James Manning
The event is run by the directors of Australia’s Top Restaurants, food writers and critics, Terry Durack and Jill Dupleix. However, the married foodies don’t vote – they oversee a panel of 500 of Australia’s top chefs who vote for their favourites.
Since the release of the chart, Mediaweek spoke with both Durack and Dupleix.
Durack said they have a good response rate from their massive dining database.
“Out of the 500 over the past two years we have had about 380 of them vote.” He also noted that list is strictly kept to 500. If one is added then one must drop off.
Dupleix: “The response initially is dreadful. Then Terry gets on the email and asks people who have yet to respond if they would mind voting before the end of the day. It works wonders.
“We used to live in dread that the #1 restaurant in Australia would be the Golden Century in Chinatown because we knew that is where all the Sydney chefs go at midnight to have a beer and an abalone congee.
Top photo: Terry Durack and Jill Dupleix at the awards
News Corp Australia has announced True Crime Australia, leveraging the company’s network of investigative journalists and its breadth and depth of archival resources to meet Australia’s increasing fascination with true crime stories with the aim of driving new masthead subscriptions and increasing subscriber engagement across the News Corp network.
From convicts to present day, True Crime Australia will feature crimes and criminals that have helped shape our society told in compelling news reads, multipart specials, book extracts, podcasts and exclusive behind the scenes material – much of which has never been told before.
Kathy Lipari, executive editor News360 at News Corp Australia, said: “Whether it’s fear or fascination, an increasing number of people love nothing more than a gripping read of cold cases, crimes and criminals in our community, and stories of our criminal history.
“Our expert crime writers will dive into the unsolved cases that have baffled investigators and left communities searching for answers for years.’’
Lipari said News Corp’s investigative journalists work passionately and tirelessly because something compels them to uncover the truth.
“This relentless commitment to devoting countless hours to interviewing, questioning, researching and crafting the story behind the crime proudly showcases the role of our mastheads and investigative journalism in keeping our communities informed and our people safe.
“True Crime Australia will take readers behind the police tape to get the facts and search for answers.”
News Corp’s crime writers headlining True Crime Australia include: Charles Miranda from News360, Andrew Rule and Keith Moor from the Herald Sun and Sunday Herald Sun; Mark Morri and Janet Fife-Yeomans from The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph; Kate Kyriacou from The Courier-Mail and The Sunday Mail; and Sean Fewster and Nigel Hunt from The Advertiser and Sunday Mail.
The new standalone site will be complemented by dedicated true crime sections on all metro mastheads curating print, digital and broadcast content from News Corp’s network of journalists who investigated or recalled the crimes that both shocked and shaped the nation. Geo-locating technology will be used to promote relevant stories to specific audiences.
Charles Miranda, national editor of True Crime Australia, said: “The true crime genre has always been popular but never more so than now as there is a blur between fact and fiction.
“You watch TV or films and you see these horrific crimes or gut-wrenching tragedies and it’s often not clear what is true life, what has been inspired by true events or completely made up by Hollywood. Audiences want to know the truth and would sooner follow a real life crime. There is always that thought the nightmare could happen to them or someone they love.”
Supporting the launch of the new site and News Corp’s true crime product offering will be a creative print and digital ad campaign through all News Corp metro mastheads, 15- and 30-sec TV ads targeting crime programming, a digital marketing, social media and PR campaign and supporting editorial.
The campaign creative shifts between concepts that are journalistic-led, criminally led, and fact or quiz-led, drawing people in through the use of compelling imagery and text.
Subscribers will get new instalments released each week at truecrimeaustralia.com.au.
Top photo: Crime writers Kate Kyricaou, Sean Fewster, Andrew Rule (Source: News Corp Australia)
Network Ten has launched a “10 reasons to buy” trade marketing campaign highlighting the strength of its second half programming schedule.
Every two weeks for the next six weeks, the campaign will give advertisers and brands 10 reasons to buy across the network focusing on its talent, programs, multiplatform success and demographic strength. It will run across digital and broadcast.
Network Ten chief content officer Beverley McGarvey said: “We know Aussies love and support locally made content and with this lineup we have made our biggest investment in Australian content. Our second half lineup is the best we have ever scheduled. It is a wonderful mix of returning much-loved franchises like Survivor, The Bachelor and The Bachelorette and exciting new domestic content like Pointless, Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures, Street Smart, Blind Date and the massive new game show with Gold Logie winner Grant Denyer, Game of Games.
See more: New shows coming to TEN in 2018
“We have also commissioned eight new shows to be broadcast across a single week in Pilot Week – a week dedicated to showcasing new Australian content. Pilot Week will provide an opportunity for production companies and performers to be even more adventurous and exciting. All eight pilots are bold and exciting ideas that will broaden the television landscape. Ten’s intent is that each of these pilots could be commissioned as series. We will be announcing more details about Pilot Week soon,” McGarvey said.
Network Ten executive general manager revenue, client & partnerships Rod Prosser said: “Across all of Network Ten’s multiplatform assets, we offer high-impact, brand-safe, family-friendly environments. The ‘10 reasons to buy’ campaign aims to clearly outline the benefits of aligning and partnering with Ten during one of the biggest programming schedules in our history.”
Reasons in the first iteration of the campaign include MasterChef Australia consistently being the #1 show in the advertiser-friendly demographic of 25 to 54s, Have You Been Paying Attention? experiencing its biggest series ever and Ten’s new quiz show Pointless.
Better Homes and Gardens has unveiled a fully integrated experience across its digital product portfolio, with a re-engineered user interface that can be personalised for individual preferences.
With new content verticals, improved page load speeds and a responsive new layout, the user interface enables the same premium experience regardless of device and offers improved alignment across all the channels of Better Homes and Gardens including television, magazine, app and online properties to coincide with the print brand’s 40th birthday celebrations.
Julia Zaetta, editor-in-chief, said: “Our audience has always guided every brand decision. As we toast our 40th birthday with a digital facelift, we proudly go to market with a simplified content journey that better reflects an integrated brand proposition across all platforms including colour palette and fonts.
“Not only do I feel our evolved digital look better showcases the quality we are well known for, I also believe our audience will enjoy the new personalised experience including choosing how, what and when they get updates from the Better Homes and Gardens brand.”
Coinciding with changes to user experience and back-end technology, Better Homes and Gardens digital content is expanding to align with the magazine including new DIY, how-to sections, travel, trending recipes and an expanded recipe section including healthy food ideas from Diabetic Living. New and exclusive short-form video from the Better Homes and Gardens TV show has also been introduced including a new content series showcasing technology product reviews.
Gereurd Roberts, CEO, Pacific, said: “Technology is such an essential part of home and life. Our audience want to demystify technology in and outside the home with the help from the Better Homes and Gardens brand – an authoritative yet easy to understand voice they know and trust.
“Our new portfolio of Better Homes and Gardens digital products has been re-engineered with speed front and centre allowing the country’s biggest multiplatform audience to explore, discover and engage faster with our content than ever before.”
Will Everitt, head of digital product and technology, added: “The Better Homes and Gardens digital journey today continues with a new iteration focused on powerful AI tech, personalisation tools and analytics to better serve the content our audience want and when they want it.
“We have re-engineered everything under the hood of the site with a focus on turbocharging the experience to allow our users to quickly discover, explore and engage with our content. Advertising placement has been overhauled, streamlined and decluttered with a focus on data driving decision and quality over quantity.”
Better Homes and Gardens Shop has also been refurbished, with closer alignment to the physical brand and an improved focus on showcasing its extensive product directory including exclusive craft, home and gardening products and new product listicles for easy discovery. Shopability has been improved using both shoppable widgets and shoppable videos to provide a frictionless path to purchase from editorial content.
VMO has unveiled its new visual identity along with a supporting brand position that focuses on the delivery of engaged audiences.
Since stepping away from Val Morgan Outdoor to become VMO in 2014, VMO has continued to grow and evolve, calling for an update to the VMO persona.
Jane King, head of marketing for VMO, said, “In a crowded marketplace the new VMO identity stands out with unmistakable character and universal appeal. Designed to evoke confidence and edge, the revitalised brand is reflective of VMO’s individuality and progressive thinking.”
VMO added: “The new identity holds a considered simplicity and a robust positioning of VMO as an outcome-based enabler. With brands looking for trusted partners that can deliver intelligent audience engagement and reach, VMO provides advertisers with targeted opportunities to effectively engage existing and prospective audiences.”
Dan Hill, CEO, Val Morgan Group, commented, “VMO is a great acronym, easy to say and easy to remember. The challenge we set ourselves was to refresh our identity to reflect the evolution of our business and, most importantly, to communicate the effectiveness of the VMO network.
“Underpinning the brand refresh is VMO’s new brand position ‘Engaging active consumers’ communicating the network’s ability to connect advertisers to captive audiences. The VMO network has been purposefully built to engage audiences in the right location with the right mindset. Rather than passively taking in outdoor media, the VMO network offers advertisers alert and actively engaged consumers. This maximises audience opportunity and minimises wastage.”
• Singles: 5SOS two weeks from chart history, but Drake beckons
• Albums: Prolific Canadian rapper Drake has another chart topper
By James Manning
Nine new singles entered the top 50 this week – but eight of them belonged to Drake! They were tracks from his new album Scorpion. Despite the flood of new material from the Canadian rapper, he was unable to dislodge 5 Seconds Of Summer from top spot.
The Sydney-based pop quartet is at #1 for a seventh consecutive week. They are two weeks away from equalling the previous longest run at the top held by Justice Crew and their tune Que Sera, which logged nine weeks topping the chart in 2014. What 5SOS have done though is rank equal third-longest at #1 alongside Kylie’s Locomotion, John Farnham’s You’re The Voice and Pseudo Echo’s Funky Town, which all held at #1 for seven weeks.
Drake’s highest chart debut this week was at #3 with Don’t Matter To Me featuring Michael Jackson. He also debuted in the top 50 this week with Nonstop (#5), Emotionless (#12), In My Feelings (#15), 8 Out Of 10 (#27), Mob Ties (#28), Talk Up (featuring Jay-Z) (#33) and Can’t Take A Joke (#36). ARIA noted only Ed Sheeran and Post Malone have scored more debuts in a single chart week, jointly holding the record with 13 each.
The only other artist to make the top 50 on debut this week is Sydney singer-songwriter Dean Lewis at #19 with Be Alright. This is a track from his forthcoming album. His chart best is Waves in 2017, which peaked at #12.
The top 10 got a clean-out this week with five new entries while there were another two new arrivals inside the top 50.
The newcomers to the chart this week:
#1 Drake with Scorpion: This is his second ARIA #1 album and the first since Views in May 2016, which was his other chart topper.
#2 Florence + The Machine with High As Hope: The British band’s fourth album – two of which made it to #1 while the other made it to #3.
#3 The Rubens with Lo La Ru: Menangle’s finest have charted with their third album after their self-titled debut hit #3 in 2012 and Hoops made it to #2 in August 2015.
#4 Gorillaz with The Now Now: The sixth album from Damon Albarn’s virtual band, with four of those albums finding a home in the top 10. The previous album Humanz was released just over a year ago and peaked at #4. The new set features contributions from Snoop Dogg and George Benson.
#10 Bullet For My Valentine with Gravity: The sixth album from the Welsh metal band and the fifth to go top 10.
#15 Hillsong Young & Free with III: The third studio album following Youth Revival, which peaked at #3 in 2016.
#29 Pendulum with The Reworks: The Perth drum and bass band plunder their back catalogue and return to the chart for the first time since 2010.
Special mention to Guns N’ Roses this week with Appetite For Destruction charging back into the top 10 after an impressive 169 weeks on the chart. The new chart action comes from a 30th anniversary reissue. Surprisingly, the album has never charted higher than #7, which is where it peaked in 1988. Guns N’ Roses’ Greatest Hits returned to the top 50 at #35 after 424 weeks on the chart!
Top photo: Drake (credit: Anton Mac)
• Australian Ninja Warrior returns… but without all its 2017 audience
• Ninja enough for Nine to win, but launch drops from 1.67m to 929,000
• No records either for House Rules and MasterChef as seasons’ climax
By James Manning
The House Rules judges had their first look at the work across the past week. Josh and Brandon topped the leaderboard with 25 out of 30 with three cheers from the judges for their pub at Toad and Mandy’s. Despite Kim and Michelle’s “astonishing design” in the waterpark at Chiara and David’s, the rest of their zone was pretty much a fail and they sank to the bottom with 16 out of 30. The Sunday episode was on 835,000 after 918,000 last week. Seems Ninja took away more viewers than the Logies.
Sunday Night followed with a profile of Elaine French, who has been robbed twice by African gangs in Melbourne. The episode did 555,000 after audiences of 574,000 and 474,000 in the past fortnight.
The Quintuple Steps were the first obstacles on the second season of Australian Ninja Warrior. Hosts Rebecca Maddern and Ben Fordham with Freddie Flintoff amid the action were back for the new episodes. Adventure junkie Steve Choate was the first contestant. The show had gone to considerable trouble building his backstory and brought all his family to Ninja Island, but he still lucked out on the first section of the course. And so it will go for the next few weeks, pumping up the contestants only to watch most of them fall short at one of the various obstacles. The first show back did what can only be a disappointing 929,000 after it set the bar so high last year.
On 60 Minutes Liam Bartlett met Dhakota Williams, the daughter of Australia’s most notorious gangster, Carl Williams. The episode did 618,000, which put it ahead of the competition.
An episode of Tough Nuts (aka Australian Crime Stories) followed where the guest crook had been busy – murderer, drug dealer, kidnapper, extortionist and street hoon, Dino Dibra. He grew up in Sunshine, a Melbourne working class suburb, where he became friends with a group of boys who would all go on to leave their marks in Melbourne’s underworld. The episode did 295,000, which sees it well inside the top 20.
There’s not long to go on MasterChef as the series entered Survival Week. Kristen and Khan were the under-performers at the end of the show with Kristen chosen to join Ben in the elimination challenge at the end of the week. Another three will head to that elimination challenge after Monday’s show. The Sunday episode did 748,000 after 718,000 on Sunday last week.
Earlier in the night The Sunday Project was on 421,000 after 7pm with Daniel Sutton reporting from the Thailand cave rescue.
There were some confronting images at the start of a repeat episode of NCIS, which did 298,000 after MasterChef.
A Nelson home painted black – inside and out – was featured on Grand Designs New Zealand, which did 527,000 after the news.
The first episode of the second season of Jack Irish followed with 723,000 watching Guy Pearce, Marta Dusseldorp and a great cast embark on their latest mystery. Ian Collie, Andrew Knight and Matt Cameron were producers of this season. The audience was just short of the 786,000 who tuned in for episode one of Mystery Road.
Evolutionary theory and destructive creation were on offer on an episode of First Civilisation looking at Ancient Mesoamerica with 183,000 watching.
The second leg of the Tour de France followed with 195,000 after 197,000 watched the opening stage on Saturday.
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||4.7%||GEM||1.8%||ELEVEN||2.1%||Food Net||0.9%|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||5.7%||GEM||3.4%||ELEVEN||2.3%||Food Net||1.3%|
|ABC ME||0.4%||7mate||4.4%||GEM||2.7%||ELEVEN||1.5%||Food Net||0.6%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||Ten Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC ME||0.5%||7mate||5.5%||GEM||3.9%||ELEVEN||1.2%||Food Net||0.7%|
|SUNDAY METRO ALL TV|
Friday Top 10
Saturday Top 10
Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2018. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM
Isentia Group has appointed Ed Harrison as managing director and chief executive officer on Friday and announced the resignation of James Orlando as chief financial officer.
Harrison will take up the new role from August 6, 2018. He replaces John Croll, who resigned in February and stepped down from the position in May 2018.
Harrison came to Australia in 2001 to set up JCDecaux’s business in Victoria and South Australia. From 2003 to 2008, he was general manager (Australia) of JCDecaux.
Harrison then joined Fairfax where, as group sales director, he was responsible for sales operations across 300 newspaper, magazine and digital brands with a diverse customer base and combined revenue of $500m.
From 2014 to June 2018, Harrison was the CEO of Yahoo7, a joint venture between Seven West Media and Verizon, which delivered digital media products and original content to over nine million monthly users.
His initial salary at Isentia will be $676,000 per annum including superannuation reviewed annually. Subject to the required shareholder approval and following commencement of Harrison’s employment, Isentia will offer him an additional $676,000 of equity in the form of rights to shares granted under the Isentia Long Term Incentive Plan (LTIP).
Commenting on his appointment, Ed Harrison said: “I am delighted to be joining an iconic company like Isentia, which is widely known as the leading provider of media intelligence in the Asia-Pacific region. Like many organisations, Isentia is facing a number of challenges associated with the rapidly changing media landscape. I look forward to working with the team to drive an innovation, digital and product-focused growth agenda.”
Meanwhile Isentia will commence a search for a new CFO immediately. To ensure a smooth handover, James Orlando will remain with Isentia until a new CFO has commenced.
Late on Friday it was confirmed ex-Foxtel boss Peter Tonagh and former Australian Communications and Media Authority acting chairman Richard Bean are heading up the government’s efficiency review of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and the SBS, reports Fairfax Media’s Jennifer Duke.
Tonagh stepped down from his role as chief executive of pay-TV platform Foxtel in January after two years in the role.
Bean, a former legal counsel and network business manager for Network Ten, spent seven years as general counsel for telco Unwired.
An efficiency review of the public broadcasters was announced by Communications Minister Mitch Fifield in May as part of the 2018 Budget, which froze the ABC’s funding until 2022, saving the government $83.7 million.
Minister Fifield told Fairfax Media in a statement that the review was to assist the public broadcasters as they approach their next funding triennium, with $3.9 billion to be provided from July 2019.
Cinema exhibition and theme parks company Village Roadshow is putting the finishing touches on the next leg of its debt reduction program, reports The AFR.
Street Talk reports Village Roadshow will go cap in hand to shareholders as early as this week, seeking fresh funds to pay down debt and bring some level of balance sheet strength.
Village Roadshow had $381 million in drawn debt as at December 31, down from $627.5 million in June last year. It meant the company’s leverage ratio was 2.83-times at the half-year, which was just below the closely watched three-times EBITDA mark.
JCDecaux’s $1.2 billion deal to buy Australia’s APN Outdoor capped off a manic week in the outdoor advertising sector, reports The AFR’s Max Mason and Sarah Thompson in a detailed backgrounder on recent deals.
Approval from the competition regulator is still pending and the ACCC’s ruling is not being taken for granted – a provisional decision date has been set for August 30 on both transactions.
Hundreds of ABC supporters and staff packed out an inner city Sydney auditorium yesterday afternoon to protest against the federal government’s funding cuts to the public broadcaster, reports The Australian’s Rhian Deutrom.
The Sunday rally, coordinated by Friends of the ABC, received more than four times the number of RSVPs than the venue had space for, forcing the organisers to establish a spill-over room to broadcast the event into.
The crowd featured celebrities like Hugo Weaving and Magda Szubanski, comedian Julian Morrow and veteran journalists such as Kerry O’Brien.
Fairfax Media has united with the commercial television and radio industry in calling on the federal government to rein in the public broadcasters, accusing the ABC and SBS of “distorting” the market, reports The Australian’s Dana McCauley.
By chasing clicks with online news articles that had only “entertainment value” – and paying to promote them on Google or Facebook to generate traffic back to the ABC site – the public broadcaster was stealing audience from the commercial operators, Fairfax said in its submission to the competitive neutrality inquiry.
News Corp, which is yet to release its submission, has also accused the public broadcasters of exceeding their charters.
Rupert Murdoch is set to finally be given clearance by the British government to take over Sky, freeing the media mogul to lodge a new knockout bid to try to see off rival Comcast.
The culture secretary, Matt Hancock, will this week give his verdict, allowing Murdoch to buy the 61% of Sky he does not already own after a consultation on plans to make him sell Sky News to reduce his control of UK news media.
Assuming Hancock gives a green light, Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox is expected to move quickly to lodge a new bid for Sky. The original offer of £10.75p a share, which values Sky at £18.5bn, was made back in December 2016.
Could one of Australia’s most-loved quiz shows, Sale of the Century, be set for a revival? asks News Corp’s Fiona Byrne.
Rumours have been circulating in recent weeks that Channel 10 has shown interest in the format – possibly even doing a secret pilot – and those whispers beg the question as to why the show, with its simple format and huge amount of nostalgic goodwill, hasn’t been rebooted over the past decade.
Ten has been actively commissioning new shows such as Pointless, Game of Games, Playing For Keeps, Sports Tonight and How To Stay Married, but on Friday denied Sale was on its radar.
“There is no news on a pilot for Sale of the Century, but we do pilot new shows all the time and are always looking at new shows for Ten,” a spokesperson said.
As a former PR maven and wife of the one-time head of the Seven and Nine networks, Skye Leckie is used to doors opening for her all over Sydney. Sleeping in doorways, though, is a new experience, reports Fairfax Media’s Karl Quinn.
“I’m not trying to dramatise it but it was really hard work,” the socialite and charity fundraiser says of the 10 days she spent on the streets for the SBS documentary series Filthy Rich & Homeless. “And because of that, the emotions are still pretty raw.”
Leckie and her four fellow participants – actor-broadcaster Cameron Daddo, author Benjamin Law, politician and activist Alex Greenwich and Instagram star Alli Simpson – shot the series in Sydney in March. Deprived of money, phones, support networks and routine, they experienced, albeit briefly and with a camera crew in tow, the various types of homelessness that are increasingly common in Australia.
The series will air over three nights next month, followed by a live special discussing homelessness and possible solutions to it. “Thank God we’ve got SBS,” she says.
The ABC has axed consumer affairs show The Checkout, just in time to stop the commencement of production on season 7.
Executive producer Julian Morrow expressed his unhappiness in a statement, with the footnote: “As the PR flaks would always say at the start of their non-answers to questions from The Checkout, this statement can be attributed to a spokesperson for The Checkout. But it was written by The Checkout’s executive producer Julian Morrow.”
The statement reads in part:
“Since 2013 The Checkout has aimed to give Australians valuable consumer information in an entertaining way. We’ve tried to be a show that does the core business of a public broadcaster.
“The line ‘Don’t get ripped off. Watch The Checkout’ summed up the show’s purpose. A public broadcaster that’s independent of commercial influence is the natural home, probably the only home, for a show like The Checkout.
“We’re disappointed the ABC’s funding priorities do not include The Checkout.
“The ABC’s Head of Non-Scripted production [Josie Mason-Campbell] explained the decision not to fund another series of The Checkout by citing budget cuts and the relatively high cost of making the show.”
The ABC later indicated the series was on hold and had not been axed. A spokesperson added:
The ABC has decided not to commission a seventh series of The Checkout for 2018-19 at this time. The programming slate regularly changes for any number of reasons, including the need to strike a balance between new and returning programs for audiences. Putting The Checkout on hiatus does not preclude the program from returning in the future. The ABC is proud of its long association with The Checkout and production company Giant Dwarf, with which it has worked on other programs, such as The Letdown and Growing Up Gracefully.
The FIFA World Cup is the most-watched tournament in global sports. It is the event that brings together more humans than any other in a single shared emotional moment, writes Malcolm Knox in his SMH column.
Yet the filleting and restriction of viewership by subscription television means the World Cup is no longer a freely shared, truly common global experience.
In Mediterranean Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, FIFA has leased its property to a fragmentary flotilla of ambitious but often obscure pay-television networks. They are not available in most homes or hotel rooms, even at the high end.
This World Cup will, in consequence, be the least-watched in history – and not because of the early exit of so many of football’s great powers. In Italy, Spain, Germany, Argentina, Portugal, the Netherlands, the African continent and the Arab world, interest in the event is not driven solely by national partisanship. People would be watching the World Cup in as great numbers as ever, but all too often they simply cannot, because they are unable to afford the package or the access to a new subscriber network.