Andrew Bolt has gotten into trouble with the press watchdog over his climate change coverage. And other media tidbits of the day.
Bolt falls foul of press council. Melbourne’s Herald Sun has extended its lead as the newspaper with the most Australian Press Council breaches this year thanks to an article by Andrew Bolt questioning global warming. Bolt’s February opinion piece “Time that climate alarmists fessed up“ claimed that the world hadn’t warmed for up to 15 years according to data from Britain’s Met Office. The Met had earlier put out a statement saying such claims were “entirely misleading”.
After receiving multiple complaints about Bolt’s op-ed, the press council concluded that Bolt is entitled to express his views about climate change but had given readers an inaccurate impression of the Met’s views of its own data. While expressing concerns about the way Bolt presented data on sea and ice conditions, the press council dismissed this part of the complaint. The Herald Sun ran the press council ruling on page 14 of yesterday’s paper, adjacent to Bolt’s regular Thursday column. The Bolt finding means the Hun has notched up six adverse press council adjudications this year, twice as many as second-place getters The Daily/Sunday Telegraph and The Advertiser. — Matthew Knott
The year in radio ratings. Detailed audience data for the final Sydney radio ratings survey of 2012 confirm audience loses for Alan Jones of 2GB and Kyle Sandilands (and his offsider, Jackie O) on 2Day FM. Both 2GB and 2Day FM saw sharp falls in the size of their average weekly audiences compared with the final survey of 2011, while ABC Sydney 702 saw a solid rise.
Compared with the weekly cumulative audiences for the final survey of 2011, Alan Jones saw the number of Monday to Friday listeners dip to 456,000 from 468,000; Kyle Sandilands saw his cumulative audience dip to 537,000 from 579,000, while 702 breakfast host Adam Spencer did best of all with a rise of 10% to 479,000 from 433,000.
Sandilands remained the most listened to person in Sydney radio in Survey 8 this year, as he was in the final survey of 2011, but Spencer moved past Jones into second (and was the most listened to person in AM talk in the Sydney market).
Both 2DAY FM and 2GB ended 2012 with average weekly audiences down on the same survey of 2011. For example, 2GB’s average audience fell to 561,000 a week in the last survey of 2012, from 628,000 in survey 8 of last year, a fall of 10.6%. And 2Day’s average audience in Survey 8 fell to 792,000 from 939,000 in the last survey of 2011 — a 15.6% decline. Triple J was the other big winner in Sydney, recording an audience share of 6.1% — the highest in 12 years for the youth-focused radio station. — Glenn Dyer
Seven’s loss is 7.30’s gain. Melbourne-based investigative reporter Louise Milligan is departing Channel Seven and will join the ABC’s 7.30 program in 2013. It’s a big loss for Seven’s Melbourne news director Simon Pristel, given Milligan’s record breaking stories and teasing out information through Freedom of Information requests. Milligan previously worked as Seven’s NSW state political reporter and high court correspondent for The Australian. In an email to 7.30 staff, ABC current affairs boss Bruce Belsham said: “Louise won the position from a very strong field and shortlist … I’m confident Louise will bring an energetic news breaking capacity to the national program and I’m delighted to welcome her into the ABC current affairs team.” — Matthew Knott
News Corp’s UK profits up. Every disaster has a silver lining — even for Rupert Murdoch’s scandal plagued UK operations. NI Group (The old News International), the key UK company in Rupert Murdoch’s British newspaper empire lifted operating profit in the 2012 financial year (ending July 1), despite the closure of News of The World in July of 2011 in the wake of the phone hacking scandal.
According to the accounts of NI, released in London this week, the group made a trading profit of 159.9 million pounds ($A243 million) compared to the 113.4 million ($A172 million) in 2011. That was despite a 13% fall in turnover to a still substantial 1.19 billion pounds ($A1.8 billion).
A note in the accounts says turnover “was lower during the year, as a result of decreased editorial and newsprint costs and lower marketing costs than in the previous year”. That also meant profit was higher in the absence of those extra costs for staff, newsprint and ink, distribution and marketing of the NotW.
NI Group includes the three UK papers, The Times (which saw its editor, James Harding forced out this week by the New York HQ), The Sunday Times and The Sun (which includes The Sun on Sunday) and book publisher Harper Collins. Overall, NI Group reported a loss of 189.4 million pounds after tax (around $A288 million). But that was largely due to charges relating to the closure of NotW and legal bills relating to phone hacking and other police investigations. — Glenn Dyer
Slipper in the Tele? Not a chance.As Richard Farmer noted yesterday, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph buried its brief report on Justice Steven Rares’ decision to throw out James Ashby’s s-xual harassment claim on page 17. TheTele, you’ll remember, splashed with the allegations against Slipper on its front page in April and has regularly photoshopped him as a rat. Today, there’s no mention of the Slipper and Ashby case at all, or the implications for preselected MP Mal Brough. But there is this story on page three:
Video of the day. The New York Times tracks the life — and surprisingly poignant death — of a piano left on a New York City curbside.
Memo to ratings addicts.Crikey’s resident ratings watcher Glenn Dyer is jetting off to Tuscany for a taste of la dolce vita. He’ll be back in 2013 and so will TV ratings.