Friday June 15, 2018

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SBS's Craig Foster talks World Cup: There’s no need to ‘Australianise’ football

What many broadcasters get wrong about soccer is that they feel the need to “Australianise” the sport in order for it to appeal to local viewers. But this is far from the truth, SBS’s chief football analyst Craig Foster told Mediaweek.

By Kruti Joshi

He was speaking from Russia where he is covering the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which began June 14, 2018.

Foster said: “It’s sad and I am not a supporter of it. A lot of broadcasters in Australia feel as though in order for the game to continue to gain acceptance, it needs to be treated in the same way as NRL or AFL. They feel like it needs to use some of the same terms and colloquialisms.

Foster and Lucy Zelić in the SBS Red Square studio

“The history of SBS shows precisely the opposite. Our job is to treat football as it is and demonstrate to Australia the beauty of the game and the international qualities of it. We believe that Australia will come to the game if we do this. SBS is not about changing the game to suit Australia.”

The popularity of football in Australia has increased with each World Cup tournament. “The number of viewers for every single World Cup that SBS has shown has accelerated exponentially,” Foster said.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article hereor subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

Lifestyle Channels’ Hannah Barnes rallies for the network to win its first Gold Logie

In two weeks Foxtel will know whether it has won its first-ever TV Week Gold Logie.

By James Manning

Andrew Winter, the host of Lifestyle’s Selling Houses Australia, has won a truckload of ASTRA Awards in the past, but his nomination for the TV Week Gold Logie is the first time anyone from a Foxtel program has made that list.

• 2018 TV Week Logie Awards nominees announced

Foxtel is about to launch a multichannel campaign to encourage viewers to vote for Winter when voting opens again on June 25.

Selling Houses Australia presenter Andrew Winter

Selling Houses Australia ratings are up 10% on series 10 and it is Lifestyle’s highest-rating series ever,” Hannah Barnes, general manager of the Lifestyle group, told Mediaweek.

The program keeps good company. “The only series to have ever outperformed Selling Houses Australia on Foxtel is Game Of Thrones,” Barnes added.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article hereor subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

Dentsu Aegis Network introduces people-based marketing platform M1 in Australia

Dentsu Aegis Network has announced it is the first communications group in Australia to develop a true people-based digital advertising solution with the announcement that M1 will soon launch locally.

M1 is Dentsu Aegis Network’s people-based planning and activation platform – a central global resource that will serve all of the network’s agency brands. Australia is the second global market behind the US to introduce M1.

Simon Ryan, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network in ANZ, said: “Designed to help our clients reach real people at scale, M1 enables us to leverage what we know about a person and their passion points to tailor their ad or content experience, while optimising digital activations for effectiveness, efficiency and brand safety.”

Speaking to Mediaweek on Sky News Business on Thursday, Ryan explained: “People-based marketing is working with datasets to drive one-on-one communication with customers. It is a very exciting initiative and we are telling clients about it today. We see it as an opportunity to target real people in real time as opposed to [using] cookie data. We can target a large number of consumers very efficiently which increases the opportunity to get a better return on investment.

“M1 is the first phase of realising our vision for media planning and activation to be people-based, underpinned by deterministic information related to real people. Dentsu Aegis Network is the leader in data and programmatic, and will continue to offer an integrated planning and buying service across all media touchpoints. M1 further bolsters our accountability and effectiveness in delivering business results for our clients.”

Watch Simon Ryan on Mediaweek on Sky News Business here

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article hereor subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

New Nova study reveals 3.5 million people listen to podcasts in Australia

Nova Entertainment has released Australia’s first Podcasting Intelligence Report that explores the rapid rise of the medium in the country and the power of it for brands.

The radio broadcaster partnered with Acast and international research company Ipsos for the new study. It addresses the value of the Australian podcast audience, its motivations for listening and how advertisers can drive brand discovery and create new audience connections.

The study revealed that podcasting has become the fastest-growing on-demand audio medium with 3.5 million listeners aged 16-64. That means one in four people in that age bracket consume podcasts. Twenty-one percent of current listeners are listening to more podcasts than they did 12 months ago.

The report also shows that 49% of podcast listeners are more likely to influence those around them and have a higher discretional spend on key categories such as retail, travel and entertainment. Advertising delivered by the podcast host was also found to be most effective in capturing audience attention and driving brand recall, with listeners twice as likely to trust the message that host-read ads deliver.

The Podcasting Intelligence Report comes off the back of the recently released PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Entertainment & Media Outlook 2018-2022 industry forecast report, which also attests to the growth in consumption and advertising revenue for podcasting locally.

Nova’s national commercial strategy director of CREATE, Kate Murphy, said, “The Podcasting Intelligence Report presents an opportunity to deepen the conversation around the potency of podcasting for advertisers in Australia with proprietary research based on local market needs and local data. To date, podcast research has relied largely on global data with a focus on awareness and consumption, which is just one part of the story. We saw the potential in exploring a more detailed view of the podcast audience, their motivations for listening and the opportunity that presents for brands.”

Nova Entertainment’s partnership with Acast has seen the company become a powerful commercial podcast player in Australia. It has a focus on creating compelling podcast offerings, including the award-winning Modern Babies, Meet Me At The Barre and The Broncos Podcast.

Acast Australia general manager Henrik Isaksson said, “Globally, Acast is a data-driven business. Doing this research to better understand and serve the local Australian market alongside Nova has been great.”

To accompany this research, Nova Entertainment has just launched a podcast series called Word of Mouth. It takes listeners deep into the world of podcasting, interviewing some of the most prolific podcast creators behind this rapidly growing medium and driving discovery of some of the most influential content and categories worldwide. Acast’s global chief content officer Adam Martin and Modern Babies’ Jess Hamilton are the hosts of Word Of Mouth.

Nova Entertainment is currently in market presenting findings of the Podcasting Intelligence Report to agencies and advertisers.

Andrew Mercado on TV: iview, ABC’s Ferrone family + Gruen just getting better

Killing Eve: Redefines genres as it switches effortlessly from workplace comedy to assassin mayhem – get on board, people!

By Andrew Mercado

In 2008, Nine axed Nightline and Sunday, Kate Ritchie left Home & Away and TEN launched So You Think You Can Dance Australia. Meanwhile, ABC was on fire, having its most successful ratings years ever, with a share of 17% and shows like Enough Rope, Spicks & Specks and even a doco about parrots all landing in the Top 10. Oh yeah, and it also started a catch-up service called iview.

Now celebrating its tenth anniversary, iview has been revamped and refreshed. In particular, it has followed SBS On Demand’s lead by offering original and quality dramas to binge online and the lineup has some absolute scorchers like Killing Eve, which is going to be in many Top 10 lists this year. Starring Grey’s Anatomy’s Sandra Oh and Doctor Foster’s Jodie Comer, this is an MI5 drama that redefines genres as it switches effortlessly from workplace comedy to assassin mayhem. Get on board people – everybody is going to be watching and talking about this show.

iview is the most popular catch-up service in Australia and why not? ABC embraced the future before anyone else would and its viewers, particularly the older ones, have adopted all new technology enthusiastically. It is no surprise that certain media outlets and networks are seething with jealousy about the ABC’s continuing popularity and some take every opportunity to run negative stories about it, usually “bias”. Aunty’s most devoted viewers, however, will fight to the death to keep the public broadcaster immune from Government interference and well funded enough to keep moving with the times.

One of ABC’s biggest hits right now is the delightful Back In Time For Dinner. The Ferrone family, who were tapped on the shoulder while out shopping and asked to audition, have been great to watch as they have navigated fashion, society and food. The youngest child, Olivia, has been a particular delight, bursting into tears at having to eat tripe in the 1950s but beside herself with excitement when lollies and cordial appeared in following decades. It is my fervent hope that Pete Evans and Sarah Wilson will never influence this child’s unbridled joy by trying to cut sugar from her diet again.

The original BBC Back In Time format has spun off into multiple series, with one covering 1900s to 1940s, the weekend and Christmas specials. That means there is plenty of scope for the ABC to do more of these and I am sure it will. Let’s also hope it is also having discussions about what to do with Gruen, also celebrating its tenth anniversary. It too has had multiple spinoffs (Gruen Nation, Gruen Planet, Gruen Sweat and now just Gruen) and yet again, there is chatter that it may have reached the end of the line.

But I am calling bullshit because this season of Gruen has been as good as any before it. The chemistry between Wil Anderson, Russell Howcroft and Todd Sampson never gets old so why end when everyone is still peaking? Maybe Gruen needs to go Back In Time á la Mad Men. Or maybe there is a series about the media and all those that get nasty because they can’t cope with change.

Top photo: Sandra Oh and Jodie Comer in Killing Eve

NZ Media News: TV exec to Vodafone, Stuff poaching, Nicky Hager win, Netflix movie buy

Mediaweek’s John Drinnan rounds up the latest media news from the NZ market.

TV exec to run Vodafone

Russell Stanners

Jason Paris is to replaced Russell Stanners as chief executive of Vodafone NZ. Paris brings media experience to Vodafone, having headed marketing at TVNZ and at the TV operation at MediaWorks. Over the past six years, Paris has run the home mobile and business unit at the dominant Spark. The Commerce Commission recently knocked back Vodafone plans to merge with Sky TV, but the companies have pledged to cooperate extensively. Stanners is rumoured to be replacing John Fellet as CEO at Sky TV later this year

Stuff poaches for its A-team

Fairfax-owned Stuff has been involved in a flurry of poaching senior editorial staff. The print-digital operation hired Carol Hirschfeld as head of video, audio and content partnerships. Hirschfeld recently, and controversially, exited her role as head of content at Radio New Zealand, after being involved in a political stoush about a secretive meeting with the broadcasting minister, Clare Curran.

Meanwhile, high profile Auckland specialist reporter Todd Niall has joined Stuff after more than 30 years with RNZ.

Rebecca Stevenson has been appointed national business editor for Stuff, after a short stint as business editor at the focused Spinoff website. She replaces Ellen Read, who has been appointed press secretary to Finance Minister Grant Robertson.

Also joining Stuff are high profile feminist and RadioLive presenter Alison Mau and Parliamentary reporter Andrea Vance, formerly with TVNZ.

Nicky Hager wins apology and payout

Nicky Hager

Media are judging a police apology and payout to high profile investigative journalist Nicky Hager as a win for media freedom. Back in 2015, the High Court found police illegally raided and searched Hager’s Wellington home after publication of his book Dirty Politics, which exposed the National government spinning material to selected right-wing blogs, undermining opponents. Police initiated the raid looking for the source for information against the government, and accessed his banking details. Kiwi police have increasingly come under scrutiny over political independence of events, such as the Kim Dotcom police raid in conjunction with the FBI and intervening with media to refute unpublished rumours about Clarke Gayford, the partner of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Legal battle

The property baron and former National Business Review columnist Sir Robert Jones has lodged a defamation claim against Renae Maihi. The Maori filmmaker organised a petition of 68,000 people seeking the government to remove Sir Robert’s knighthood over what she said were racist comments, including suggestions Maoris should replace the national holiday, Waitangi Day, with Maori Gratitude Day to non-Maoris. The NBR pulled the paywalled column after complaints. Jones said the column was satirical and a joke. There has been a divisive debate about introducing hate speech legislation, heightened by comments from Israel Folau about homosexuals.

Reality heartbreak

Heartbreak Island hosts Matilda Rice and Mark Dye

TVNZ2’s new reality show Heartbreak Island has had a modest start on its first night on Monday this week. It came in third behind Three’s Dancing With The Stars and the TVNZ1 consumer show Fair Go. TVNZ has bet big time on the format, which it co-owns and which is running at 7.30 pm three times a weeks.

RNZ content sharing plans

RNZ chief executive Paul Thompson says the public broadcaster is keen to expand its content-sharing arrangements with other New Zealand media outlets. Thompson said the revenue from its content-sharing arrangement with Stuff was “peanuts”, but gave exposure it couldn’t afford to pay for. The state-owned broadcaster now has 25 content-sharing arrangements and is looking to do more.

Netflix acquires hit Kiwi movie

Makers of the hit Kiwi comedy The Breaker Upperers have secured a deal with Netflix and it will debut on the platform next year. The movie has already earned NZ$1.7 million on the Kiwi box office, and debuted to good reviews in Australia at the Sydney Film Festival. Co-producer Ainsley Gardiner said discussions first opened with Netflix soon after the movie’s debut at the South By Southwest Film Festival in March, in Texas.

Top photo: The Breaker Upperers

NZ Media Profile: NZME digital leader Cameron Death on video strategy after return home from US

Cameron Death is general manager of digital ventures at NZME. He brings a unique background of 19 years working in US digital media, and his experience is driving the Kiwi firm’s expansion into digital entertainment.

By John Drinnan

His post-university curriculum vitae has him working on key media brands like Knight-Ridder, then 11 years at Microsoft in Seattle.

From 2008 to 2012 he was founder, vice-president and general manager at NBCUniversal digital studios in Los Angeles. At NBCUniversal digital studios he became more involved in programming for different platforms.

In New York from 2012 to 2014, he worked as chief revenue officer for Core Media Group, which owned half of American Idol, along with other assets.

His expertise is finding commercial connections for new digital content, a skill that is in hot demand right now. A Kiwi by birth, he returned three years ago to care for his poorly mother. She recovered, and within nine months he had been snapped up by NZME.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article hereor subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

TV Ratings Analysis: Thursday June 14

• MasterChef ends South Australia week with Maggie Beer and the #1 show 25-54
• Live AFL and NRL the centrepiece of Seven and Nine schedules as Seven wins
• World Cup: 150,000 metro watch Russia hammer Saudi Arabia late in game one

By James Manning

Seven

The week of Home and Away came to an end with 601,000 (four markets – no Adelaide).

Thursday Night AFL helped boost the Seven primary share in Melbourne and Adelaide. Seven won Melbourne on 23.1% while in Adelaide share nudged 30%. The AFL audience was 416,000 with 223,000 in Melbourne and 125,000 in Adelaide.

The Front Bar followed the football with 236,000 across metro markets and 150,000 in Melbourne.

Nine

Thursday Night NRL was a winner for Nine again in Sydney and Brisbane with respective primary shares of 23.3% and 20.7%. Nine had the biggest live single-market sport crowd with 227,000 in Sydney.

The Footy Show followed the NRL in Sydney and Brisbane with 142,000 (77,000 in Sydney).

TEN

Wayne Brady was a guest on The Project and the program also reported on the latest in the Rebel Wilson v Bauer Media saga with Melissa Hoyer and Deborah Thomas commenting on the appeal result. The episode did 488,000.

MasterChef visited Maggie Beer last night with a pressure test that resulted in Jenny Lam going home. The regular episode did 787,000. An Adelaide Masterclass followed with former MasterChef stars Poh and Callum cooking from the wonderful Adelaide Market with 561,000 watching.

Maggie Beer on MasterChef

ABC

Grand Designs Australia was just over half a million followed by QI on 310,000.

SBS

SBS got a boost from the first match of the World Cup, but that came late in the night.

The Handmaid’s Tale delivered the biggest audience – 232,000.

Earlier, Great British Railway Journeys did 213,000.

The World Cup day one numbers:
Russia v Saudi Arabia 147,000
Preview show 146,000
Pre-match 140,000

Week 24 TV: Thursday
THURSDAY METRO
ABCSevenNineTenSBS
ABC10.1%719.8%917.9%TEN15.2%SBS One6.3%
ABC 22.9%7TWO4.2%GO!3.7%ONE2.3%VICELAND1.0%
ABC ME0.7%7mate3.4%GEM2.3%ELEVEN2.3%Food Net1.2%
ABC NEWS1.4%7flix2.7%9Life2.7%NITV0.2%
TOTAL15.0%30.0%26.6%19.7%8.6%
THURSDAY REGIONAL
ABCSeven AffiliatesNine AffiliatesTen AffiliatesSBS
ABC11.1%717.6%918.7%WIN12.2%SBS One4.5%
ABC 23.5%7TWO7.1%GO!3.7%ONE2.3%VICELAND0.8%
ABC ME1.2%7mate2.8%GEM4.6%ELEVEN2.2%Food Net1.2%
ABC NEWS1.3%7flix2.4%9Life2.4%NITV0.3%
TOTAL17.1%29.9%29.4%16.7%6.8%
THURSDAY METRO ALL TV
FTASTV
82.4%17.6%
Thursday FTA
  1. Ten News Ten 943,000
  2. Ten News / Today Tonight Ten 942,000
  3. Nine News Nine 937,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 906,000
  5. MasterChef Australia Ten 787,000
  6. A Current Affair Nine 739,000
  7. ABC News ABC 657,000
  8. The Chase Australia Ten 618,000
  9. Home And Away Ten 601,000
  10. MasterChef Australia – Masterclass Ten 561,000
  11. Hot Seat Nine 539,000
  12. 7.30 ABC 514,000
  13. Grand Designs Australia ABC 512,000
  14. The Project 7pm Ten 488,000
  15. Ten Eyewitness News First At Five Ten 426,000
  16. Ten’s AFL: Thursday Night Football Ten 416,000
  17. The Chase Australia-5pm Ten 410,000
  18. Thursday Night NRL Live Nine 350,000
  19. QI (R) ABC 310,000
  20. The Project 6.30pm Ten 309,000
Demo Top Fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. MasterChef Australia Ten 240,000
  2. MasterChef Australia – Masterclass Ten 174,000
  3. Nine News Nine 138,000
  4. Nine News 6:30 Nine 134,000
  5. Ten News Ten 132,000

 

18-49 Top 5

  1. MasterChef Australia Ten 387,000
  2. MasterChef Australia – Masterclass Ten 268,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 245,000
  4. Nine News Nine 235,000
  5. Ten News / Today Tonight Ten 225,000

 

25-54 Top 5

  1. MasterChef Australia Ten 419,000
  2. MasterChef Australia – Masterclass Ten 303,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 293,000
  4. Ten News / Today Tonight Ten 286,000
  5. Nine News Nine 277,000
Thursday Multichannel
  1. PJ Masks-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 184,000
  2. Father Brown-PM 7TWO 181,000
  3. Love Island Australia 9GO! 181,000
  4. Peppa Pig-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 176,000
  5. Octonauts- ABCKIDS/COMEDY 175,000
  6. The Big Bang Theory TX2 9GO! 173,000
  7. Floogals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 169,000
  8. Teacup Travels-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 169,000
  9. Peter Rabbit- ABCKIDS/COMEDY 167,000
  10. Andy’s Baby Animals ABCKIDS/COMEDY 166,000
  11. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom ABCKIDS/COMEDY 165,000
  12. Kazoops!-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 161,000
  13. Dinosaur Train ABCKIDS/COMEDY 159,000
  14. Peppa Pig-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 159,000
  15. Murdoch Mysteries-PM 7TWO 158,000
  16. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 153,000
  17. Hey Duggee-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 153,000
  18. The Big Bang Theory TX1 9GO! 149,000
  19. Fireman Sam-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 148,000
  20. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 143,000
Thursday Subscription TV
  1. Live: NRL Eels v Rabbitohs FOX LEAGUE 220,000
  2. Live: AFL Port Adel v Bulldogs FOX FOOTY 180,000
  3. Live: The Late Show With Matty Johns FOX LEAGUE 127,000
  4. Live: AFL: Thursday Night Footy On Fox FOX FOOTY 83,000
  5. Live: NRL Thursday Night League FOX LEAGUE 78,000
  6. Aussie Gold Hunters Discovery Channel 67,000
  7. Bones TVH!TS 60,000
  8. The Bolt Report SKY NEWS LIVE 53,000
  9. Inside Ikea LifeStyle Channel 51,000
  10. Live: AFL: Thursday Footy On Fox FOX FOOTY 51,000
  11. Criminal Minds TVH!TS 49,000
  12. NRL Tonight FOX LEAGUE 47,000
  13. Paul Murray Live SKY NEWS LIVE 45,000
  14. Family Guy FOX8 45,000
  15. Outsiders SKY NEWS LIVE 44,000
  16. Selling Houses Australia LifeStyle Channel 44,000
  17. Grand Designs New Zealand LifeStyle Channel 42,000
  18. Peppa Pig Nick Jr. 38,000
  19. Peppa Pig Nick Jr. 37,000
  20. America’s Got Talent FOX8 37,000

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

Media News Roundup

Business Of Media

The AFR: Murdoch media empire has never been worth more than it is today

The bidding war that has erupted for Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox is testament to one of the billionaire’s great strengths: endurance, reports The AFR’s James Thomson.

For all the fretting about the rise of Netflix and Amazon Prime, for all the talk about the end of the movie business, for all the concerns about the death of journalism, Murdoch has engineered a situation where his media empire has never been worth more than it is today, at about $US90 billion ($119 billion), up from about $US75 billion when Murdoch split his publishing and production assets in 2013.

And that value could yet climb after Comcast chief executive chairman Brian Roberts officially lobbed his $US65 billion bid for the guts of 21st Century Fox.

[Read the original]

Fox sale: Disney has right of refusal, five days to make fresh bid if need be

After Comcast made a $US65 billion ($85.9 billion) bid for 21st Century Fox’s entertainment assets – the same holdings that Walt Disney Co. had agreed to buy for about $US52.4 billion – the Mouse House is under pressure to respond, reports Bloomberg.

Under the terms of its merger agreement with Fox, Disney has the right of refusal on any counteroffer. While it will have five days to make a fresh bid, the clock doesn’t start ticking until after the Fox board has assessed the Comcast offer and deemed it superior to Disney’s.

[Read the original]

Seven West Media CEO Tim Worner confirms Maryna Fewster as CEO WA

Seven West Media CEO Tim Worner has announced that acting chief executive officer of Seven West Media WA, Maryna Fewster, has been appointed to the role permanently.

Maryna Fewster

Fewster moved into the acting CEO role last May after a short stint at the top by John Driscoll, who had in turn replaced Chris Wharton.

As CEO, Fewster is responsible for SWM’s WA operations including The West Australian newspaper, The Sunday Times, thewest.com.au, perthnow.com.au, nine radio stations, 20 regional newspapers and Channel Seven Perth, as well as SWM’s holding in the Community Newspaper Group, a joint venture with News Corp Australia.

Fewster joined SWM in April 2017 as chief operating officer (WA) and has been acting CEO for the past month. Prior to that she worked at iiNet for over a decade as GM corporate services, chief customer officer and chief operating officer.

Pacific appoints media agency exec Emma Baston client strategy director Victoria

Pacific has appointed Emma Baston as client strategy director Victoria.

Emma Baston

Fran Vavallo, sales director, Victoria, said: “This appointment is a key step in the transformation of our commercial offering beyond inventory to focus heavily towards a more people-based marketing approach.

“Emma’s expertise across various agency and digital roles will add to the strategic conversations we’re having with clients to drive their business growth and unlock consumer behaviour change.”

Previously, Baston has worked in senior digital media buying and planning roles at various agencies including UM Australia, cummins&partners and MindShare with exposure across the strategy, communications and creative process. She has also worked at Facebook in a client partner role in the retail and auto verticals.

Emma Baston said, “I’m looking forward to helping to embed Pacific’s offering as we take to market advanced sales solutions that fuse data, insights, creative and measurement – and joining forces with Fran to tell Pacific’s story and accelerate growth.”

Rebel v Bauer: Appeal decision could have dire implications for media industry

A court decision in Bauer Media’s defamation appeal against Rebel Wilson could have dire implications for the media industry by inflating the amount of general damages awarded in successful defamation actions, experts say, reports The Australian’s Dana McCauley.

Despite the fact Wilson’s defamation payout was reduced from a record-breaking $4.6m to $600,000, neither party will be celebrating the appeal court decision, and it is expected either may challenge it in the High Court.

The part that worries publishers is the court’s decision to uphold the trial judge’s ruling that the statutory cap on general or non-economic damages, which is $389,500 in Victoria, does not apply in cases where aggravated damages have been awarded.

“Realistically, that happens in a high number of cases, so the consequences for the media are very severe,” said John-Paul Cashen, a defamation lawyer with Melbourne firm Macpherson Kelley.

[Read the original]

Chris Merritt: Don’t be surprised if there is one more chapter in defamation war

Don’t be surprised if there is one more chapter to play out in Rebel Wilson’s defamation war with Bauer Media, reports The Australian’s Chris Merritt.

An appeal to the High Court aimed at restoring her defamation payout to the original $4.6 million is not just possible but extremely likely – assuming, of course, that the High Court is interested in hearing her case.

Wilson lost $4m yesterday, thanks to a ruling by the Victorian Court of Appeal, which means she will still receive the considerable sum of $600,000.

But that might be a mere temporary setback.

[Read the original]

News Corp’s Michael Miller: “Free-to-air today is not on our shopping list”

News Corp’s ability to collect other media companies would be restrained by the competition watchdog and shareholders with their hands in a number of pockets, the organisation’s local executive chairman, Michael Miller, has contended, reports Mumbrella’s Zoe Samios.

Miller admitted to the crowd at Mumbrella360 that since the government’s media reforms passed, various companies had flirted with the prospect of buying and selling, but there would still be a number of significant barriers to News Corp’s expansion.

Pushed on whether News Corp still harboured desires for a free-to-air TV network, Miller was quick to respond: “Free-to-air today is not on our shopping list.

“Our priority at the moment is in the [Foxtel] group: having a business which has more access to consumer and advertising revenue would be the preference,” he said.

[Read the original]

News Brands

Schwartz Media names Maddison Connaughton as new Saturday Paper editor

Schwartz Media’s The Saturday Paper has announced the appointment of Maddison Connaughton as its new editor.

Erik Jensen and Maddison Connaughton

Connaughton is a writer and broadcaster, and was most recently the features editor at Vice. She is a finalist in this year’s Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year Awards for her reporting from Syria.

The Saturday Paper’s editor-in-chief Erik Jensen said: “More than four years after The Saturday Paper launched, we are expanding our vision and purpose, and Maddison will be a key part of that. I can’t wait to see everything she brings to the masthead.”

Connaughton said: “I’m so excited and, honestly, humbled to step into this role and build on all the incredible work Erik has done. I see this as an opportunity to find new audiences for the paper and to foster a whole new generation of writers who think deeply, and differently, about the shifts that are reshaping Australia and our region.”

The Saturday Paper’s publisher Morry Schwartz said: “Maddison is an exceptional journalist and a real talent. I have no doubt she will do brilliant things at The Saturday Paper.”

Rebecca Costello, the CEO of Schwartz Media, said: “Erik has done an extraordinary job building The Saturday Paper. It will be exciting to see where Maddison takes it, bringing a new set of skills and experiences to the editorship.”

The Saturday Paper continues to record strong growth. The latest print figures from emma show its print readership up 26.7% to 242,000.

Queensland newspapers facing challenges after Brisbane printer shuts down

Independent publishers in Queensland, Australia, have been scrambling for new printing arrangements after the news that Horton Media was to close, reports Peter Coleman at GXpress.

Horton Media chief executive Matt Horton says their Naranga, Brisbane, coldset printing business had been “losing altitude” over the last couple of years, despite capacity reductions by major players. And he says Fairfax Media – which he blames for destroying the market with “grossly anti-competitive behaviour” – is itself running its Ormiston plant at a fraction of capacity.

With rival quotations at half of what he calls “accepted prices”, he says Horton decided there was no longer a future in commercial newspaper printing in Australia, a market they entered from New Zealand 11 years ago.

[Read the original]

Radio

The Australian’s podcast series The Teacher’s Pet setting new download records

The Australian’s investigative podcast series The Teacher’s Pet has amassed more than half a million downloads in one of the most successful launches of its kind, reports The Australian’s David Murray.

Whooshkaa founder and CEO Rob Loewenthal yesterday said for a podcast to reach that audience from a “standing start” was unprecedented.

“There are podcasters in Australia who have been building up an audience for over 10 years and they are delivering per episode big numbers like this. Every time they drop an episode they do really well,” he said. “But we’ve been in this game for three years now and we’ve never seen a podcast achieve this type of success so quickly, especially considering this content genre.”

The podcast, by national chief correspondent Hedley Thomas and producer Slade Gibson, is examining the 1982 disappearance and suspected murder of Lyn Dawson from Sydney’s northern beaches.

[Read the original]

SEE MORE: The Teacher’s Pet – Hedley Thomas investigates 1982 Lyn Dawson disappearance in new podcast

The Beach Boys joining the smoothfm on-air lineup from Sunday June 17

The Beach Boys are joining the smoothfm on-air lineup from Sunday June 17. Mike Love, Bruce Johnston and Al Jardine will host a series of special weekend shows from 4pm-5pm Sundays.

Mike Love (credit: Randy Miramontez / Shutterstock)

The Beach Boys said, “I think it’s a wonderful opportunity to share with our fans in Australia and we really appreciate the time we are spending on smoothfm. It’s the greatest way to really get in depth into the songs and what you feel about them and what inspired them, and all kinds of different things can come out on radio.”

The Beach Boys co-founder Mike Love is no stranger to the smoothfm audience, having hosted his own show back in October 2015. smoothfm listeners will be treated to Mike’s dulcet tones yet again as he teams up with band mates Bruce and Al to share stories from their 57-year history, play all their favourite tracks and chat about their new album, The Beach Boys with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, which is out now.

The Beach Boys join smoothfm’s weekend lineup with Melissa Doyle hosting Saturday and Sunday mornings from 6am, Richard Wilkins from 10am, David Campbell from 1pm and now The Beach Boys will be heard on smoothfm 95.3 Sydney, smoothfm 91.5 Melbourne and on smoothfm DAB+ from Sunday 17 June until Sunday July 1 from 4pm to 5pm.

Television

Filming on The Blake Mysteries telemovie finished this week in Victoria

Filming on The Blake Mysteries telemovie finished this week in Victoria, reports TV Tonight.

For cast and crew, who went from axed to rescued drama only to lose leading man Craig McLachlan, it’s been a rollercoaster of emotions.

But just being back before the cameras has been fortifying for around 100 production staff.

Nadine Garner, whose character Jean steps up in Doctor Blake’s absence, reached out to Craig McLachlan as production neared.

“I wrote to him when we were about to go into production on this saying it was a strange situation for us to be in but I believed in the greatest good for the greatest number of people,” she tells TV Tonight.

“I felt very proud we were able to take the show forward and that it was done with love and concern for him and we hoped we had his blessing. But it’s difficult.

“We do collectively feel very grateful to have new (life) breathed into us, given everything we’ve been through as a production. It’s quite amazing. I feel very humbled by the fact we’ve been given another lease of life. It’s an amazing leap of faith from Seven and I really hope we deliver something they’re proud of.”

While there were rumours of four telemovies for Seven, Garner confirms at this stage much depends on the reception to a new Blake era.

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Nicole Kidman’s Blossom Films signs first-look deal for movies, TV with Amazon

Nicole Kidman has signed a first-look deal for her Blossom Films banner to develop film, TV and digital projects for Amazon Studios, reports The Hollywood Reporter.

Nicole Kidman (credit: Jaguar PS / Shutterstock)

The Jennifer Salke-led Amazon Studios noted that the two companies will work together to develop original series for Amazon Prime as well as movies that will “engage viewers in theatres”.

“Nicole is a force of nature as both an actress and a producer,” Salke said in a release announcing the deal Thursday. “She understands the focus of bringing addictive, entertaining and compelling television to our Prime Video customers as well as movies that will connect with film audiences. Stay tuned for many exciting projects to come in the very near future!”

Blossom Films, created by Kidman and Per Saari, exec produced HBO’s awards darling Big Little Lies and feature films Rabbit Hole and The Family Fang. The company is currently in production on Emmy-winner Big Little Lies and is teaming with Big Little Lies partners Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea to adapt Liane Moriarty’s Truly Madly Guilty into a limited series. Kidman is also reteaming with Big Little Lies showrunner David E Kelley for HBO straight-to-series limited series The Undoing, in which she will star. The latter will go into production in 2019.

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Sports Media

International Hockey Federation starting five-year partnership with Fox Sports

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) has agreed to a five-year partnership with Fox Sports Australia, with subscribers able to watch live and exclusive HD coverage of the Hockey Pro League, Hockey World Cups, Champions Trophies and Olympic Qualification Events until 2022.

(credit: Corepics VOF / Shutterstock)

Fox Sports will broadcast all 16 matches hosted by Australia’s Kookaburras (men) and Hockeyroos (women) as part of the Hockey Pro League which begins early 2019. In addition, they will provide full visibility across multiple platforms for all 144 Pro League matches taking place between January and June each year across the world, as well as the end of season Grand Final.

Before then Australian fans will be able to tune in to Fox Sports’ live coverage of the Kookaburra’s title defence of both the Rabobank Hockey Champions Trophy in Breda between June 23 and July 1, 2018 and the Odisha Hockey Men’s World Cup Bhubaneswar 2018, taking place from November 28 until December 16.

All Hockeyroos matches from the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup London 2018 between July 21 and August 5 as well as November’s Women’s Champions Trophy Changzhou 2018 between November 17-25 will also be shown by the Australian broadcaster.

Fox Sports COO Peter Campbell said: “Fox Sports is delighted to extend its partnership with the International Hockey Federation, a deal which will provide unprecedented coverage for the sport.

“Fox Sports will deliver more local and international action than ever before, broadcasting the exciting new Hockey Pro League from 2019, and with the 2020 Olympics just around the corner, we will be the place for fans to follow the Aussies with coverage of major events including the World Cup and Olympic Qualifiers.

“Our Australian hockey teams have achieved enormous success on the global stage but have had little visibility outside the Olympics. This new partnership will change that, providing significantly more coverage, both internationally and domestically, which will help grow the sport and showcase these incredible athletes.”

Cricket Aust says Crocmedia, Macquarie won’t replace ABC as radio broadcaster

Cricket Australia has dismissed a report that the Australian Broadcasting Corporation will miss out on the next round of radio rights, reports cricket.com.au’s Louis Cameron.

Channel Nine’s Wide World of Sports has reported that CA will end its long-standing partnership with the ABC, the public broadcaster that has covered international cricket in Australia for more than 80 years.

But CA on Thursday moved to allay fears fans would no longer be able to tune in to the ABC’s coverage of international cricket next summer.

It’s expected the next round of radio rights will again be non-exclusive, meaning multiple radio stations will be able to broadcast matches.

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Nine.com.au’s Brett Graham earlier reported:

Wide World of Sports has learned one or both of the commercial networks Crocmedia and Macquarie Media are favourites to secure the rights to broadcast international matches over the period of the next deal, believed to be five years.

It’s believed the delay in announcing a deal is due to CA seeking assurances from Macquarie Media and Crocmedia that they can provide coverage to regional areas of Australia currently serviced by the ABC.

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