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Walkley nominations: trumpets out to herald their/our own

The Walkley Award nominations for journalistic excellence were announced last night. So which media outlets shone (well, us) and which fell flat?

Crikey journalists have dominated the nominations for this year’s Walkley Awards …

Well, no, we haven’t actually. But we were mightily chuffed last night to learn our cartoonist-at-large and self-proclaimed national treasure First Dog on the Moon is up for a gong. Dog — in the running for this August effort — will duke it out for the best cartoon award with The Age’s Judy Horacek and the Herald Sun’s Mark Knight. Sydney-based sketchers, we’re unreliably informed, are spewing about the fact they’ve been upstaged by their comrades south of the border.

The consensus among those who gathered in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane to hear the nominees announced last night was that the events were a vast improvement on last year’s poorly-attended soirees. A koala stamp to whoever decided to shift the event from a Monday to a Thursday.

The Age’s new editor-in-chief Andrew Holden was a notable guest at the Melbourne gathering, with several staffers taking the opportunity to meet him for the first time. Among the 150-odd attendees in Sydney were a bevy of Global Mail scribes and Greg Sheridan’s bete noir Eric Campbell.

Watching how media outlets cover their own Walkley performance — while downplaying or ignoring that of their rivals — is a long-time guilty pleasure here at Crikey HQ. Michael Stutchbury’s Australian Financial Review  — not content with a page-two piece on its online renaissance — blew its trumpet on page four. The Australian raised a toast to itself with “Thomas leads The Oz’s Walkley charge”, focusing on the two nominations for Hedley Thomas.

Fairfax flips the bird to News by noting its reporters have “dominated nominations in print and online categories”. The ABC notes it has “dominated several categories”.

They’re both telling the truth. MEAA stronghold Fairfax leads the field with 28 nominations — including four for The Age’s Nick McKenzie and three for SMH veteran (and former busker) Kate McClymont. Aunty — helped, we hope it’s not too churlish to note, by a dearth of competition in the TV and radio doco categories — was close behind with 24. News Limited, which staged its own rebel News Awards last month, scored 19 noms.

Wotif founder Graeme Wood will be pleased to know his now-vertical online venture The Global Mail stood tall with two nominations and a pair of commendations.

Organisation Nominations
Fairfax 28
ABC 24
News Limited 19
SBS 4
Seven Network 3
The West Australian 3
Ten Network 2
The Global Mail 2
Getty Images 2
Crikey 1
Nine Network 1
Quarterly Essay 1
Sky News 1
AAP 1

In a sign the times are most definitely a’changing, Ellen Fanning is in the running for best “newspaper feature writing” for Global Mail piece on the Queensland floods. 7.30 host Leigh Sales looks a good bet in the broadcast interview category for her widely-viewed powwow with Tony Abbott.

The big question, of course, is: who will take out the Gold Walkley? To Crikey’s eye, it’s an even field compared to recent years. Former Gold Walkley winners Thomas and McClymont are strong contenders, given the political ructions caused by their reporting on Julia Gillard’s past and the Health Services Union. Judges may also reward The Age for its sustained coverage of the Securency scandal.

Or could Sarah Ferguson — who took out Gold last year for her Four Corners live cattle exposé  — score an unlikely back-to-back win for her Captain Emad scoop? We’ll find out on November 30, when the awards are handed out at Parliament House in Canberra.

12
  • 1
    paddy
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    Congrats to all the nominees. Plus, in the interests of a cracking good show, we can only hope that Glen Milne is invited to the grand final, and has a well stocked table close to the stage.

  • 2
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    Almost all of McClymont’s stories on Thomson were utter bullshit though.

    Jesus wept, you are a gullible lot aren’t you.

  • 3
    CML
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    Doesn’t happen very often, but I agree with Shepherd Marilyn!
    Of course, we could all start a campaign for First Dog on the Moon to win the Gold Walkley? After all, he makes more sense than most of the journos!!

  • 4
    tripper
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    I didn’t realise walkleys were awards for witch-hunts - which is surely what the Thomas and McLiemont awards are for.

  • 5
    fredex
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

    ” ….journalistic excellence ….. ‘

    Huh???

  • 6
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

    Nice to hear there was “a bevvy of Global Mail scribes” in Sydney – an appropriately boozy collective noun indeed for a group of journos!

    Or perhaps you meant a ‘bevy’?

  • 7
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

    McClymont launched a witch hunt lasting years based on a rejected credit card in the name of someone called ThomPson and none of the MSM noticed.

  • 8
    Mick Buckley
    Posted Friday, 19 October 2012 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

    Great to see the Cartoonist being acknowledged for his efforts.

    In Australian journalism no one has come anywhere near Keane on his coverage of the data retention and security law proposals. End of story!

    The shadows move amid twisted and contorted light
    whatever is written and the facts alone are his might
    he knows the reader can hardly take it this way down
    and torn insideout with nothing but a tawny frown
    who is it? who is he? who cares enough to risk the scorn
    there he is!.. it’s Keane! to the manor was he never born
    it’s mammon that bays and nays to give us the untrue story
    but it’s Keane who breaches the gap and lives another glory

  • 9
    fractious
    Posted Saturday, 20 October 2012 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    @ Mick Buckley, I agree, BK’s reporting on the AGD’s data retention laws should have been a shoo-in for an award, instead of all the fluff and puff pieces the rest of them indulged in (Thomson, self-interested hand-wringing about Finkelstein and Gillard’s arse). But of course very few others have the balls to even mention the subject and I’m sure Roxon & co would rather everyone stfu about it.

  • 10
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Saturday, 20 October 2012 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

    And Fergusons story about Emad was a sick joke with a nasty war criminal spiv as the source.

    Her first story led to the cancellation of a protection visa of a young man and an extra 10 months in prison because his father was featured.

  • 11
    David Sattler
    Posted Sunday, 21 October 2012 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    If the Walkley mob were ” serious ” about ” serious ” journalism then it’s impossible to go past Bernard Keane and his security intel articles.

    Can the importance of this information be measured?

    He’s doing the hard work and keeping us informed and abreast of what appears to be secret govt intentions. He exposed the clandestine cloak and dagger machinations of a govt department and more importantly his articles were the catalyst for other journalists to pick up the ball and keep running.

    We owe a big vote of thanks to the Bernard Keanes of this world.

    But then again, being acknowledged by the MSM would only indicate you are doing something wrong, yes, a worthy reality check on that one, perhaps. It would be either that or a token gesture in the context of populism, thats all.

  • 12
    shepherdmarilyn
    Posted Sunday, 21 October 2012 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    Peter Wicks over on IA would have been acknowledged for the factual work he has done on the HSU rather than the bullshit and lies the MSM come out with.

    Even today there is a cartoon about Gillard sitting on a bed of Thomson nails which makes not a lick of sense at all.

    Here in SA the media have been crucifying Tammy Franks over unlodged tax forms, they have been predicting $40,000 fines and disgrace.

    She got a $6,000 fine for ignoring the final notice to lodge her returns, she was though not fined for not putting in the returns and she was not accused of fiddling tax.

    Thomson has been subjected to more bullshit about FWA taking $450,000 from him when he can seriously only be possibly fined over the spending of a few thousand on a credit card for which there were no rules to break.

    FWA is still trying to protect their worthless investigators and Michael Lawler who interfered with the investigation that they wasted $2 million on after bullying by George Brandis and other liberal party mates of Michael Lawlers.

    But Kathy Jackson of course is let off the hook while Thomson is crucified over “there were no rules, he broke them” sort of logic.

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