From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours …
Gillard smoking gun still in the holster? We’ll just pass this anonymous tip on; believe what you will:
“On the AWU matter, I have heard from someone with links to the Liberal-National Party in Queensland that there is still one document to be released by Ralph Blewitt that will result in a slam dunk against the Prime Minister. It also apparently explains why some of the other ex-union heavyweights in Parliament have been reasonably muted in their support of Gillard in the last few weeks — they know its contents and don’t want to be associated with her when the shit hits the fan.”
System relives government glory days. An email currently doing the rounds of the Victorian government:
Something has seriously gone wrong with the database. Cenitex were trying to fix a problem and whatever they have done seems to have brought back the previous governments PPQs for the last four years. Please be advised that staff must not use the PPQ database until this problem is rectified.
Whoops. Or is that just good intel?
Canberra firm loses big law guns. What’s going at top firm Ernst & Young in Canberra? After two years of growth we’re told at least five senior executives and partners have walked away in the past four months to join competitors or the public service. One partner quit after 17 years. Know what’s going on? Drop us a line …
More walk from News Ltd in Adelaide. More redundancies at News Limited in Adelaide, with The Advertiser losing senior business reporter Meredith Booth and Sunday Mail editor Karen Cross walking. According to one newsroom spy:
“In the presence of managing editor Mel Mansell, Booth thanked all those with whom she had worked over the years — and then proceeded to name the 34 staff who have been victim of the staff cutbacks this year. As she read out the names, Mansell turned on his heels and walked off. It was quite obvious to all that he was less than impressed with Booth’s actions.”
News is free, but they want to know you. Mystery surrounds the paywall strategy at News Limited. After the Herald Sun started charging for its content online it was expected the other metropolitan tabloids in Perth, Adelaide, Sydney and Brisbane would follow. Nothing so far, and newsrooms seem to be in the dark about when — or, now, if. The strategy will be different at News.com.au, where content will remain free but, perhaps, readers will be asked to register their details. A survey is doing the rounds (you can win an iPad if you give them 10 minutes of your life to do it) which asks various questions about how readers might react to having to hand over contact details to read the content …
Xmas party watch: ABC snowed under. Staff at the national broadcaster in Sydney HQ are perturbed by the lack of festive spirit and organised parties — particularly one annoyed insider who tells us the party at the ABC’s new Brisbane digs featured a snow machine.
Newspaper free-for-all (cont). Eager spruikers from The West Australian have been flinging copies of the paper to cricket fans arriving for the Third Test at the WACA all week. “The vendors are hollering ‘The West included with your ticket!’, which is the first any of us had heard of it,” writes one Crikey reader. “Given that most of us folded it for use as shade, nobody seemed to mind.”