tip off

Apology to The Global Mail

On January 22, 2013 Crikey published an article under the headline: “Fear and loathing at The Global Mail: what went so wrong?” The article made criticisms about The Global Mail’s management and its treatment of staff.

Crikey now accepts that our report incorrectly asserted that the journalists’ union was liaising with Global Mail staff at the time of publication about taking a case to Fair Work Australia. Moreover, it was not Crikey’s intention to reflect adversely on the professionalism or qualifications of Global Mail management or staff members.

Crikey regrets the hurt and damage caused by our reports, and apologises to The Global Mail and its staff.

22
  • 1
    Simon Mansfield
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    Is anyone that surprised this all ended in tears. A guy who paid off the Greens to go easy on tourism and it’s impact on the enviroment and climate change is the flavour of the month for the luvvies. Who then goes on to rescue media workers from the perils of the marketplace. 140K a year to rewrite news wire stories with bigger words. Seriously now is anyone truly surprised.

  • 2
    miss jay
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Not that shocking - most start ups fail, especially in the media, funding or no.

  • 3
    Michael
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    What a terrific insight into the lack of business know how, competence & management skills within Left wing circles.
    Notice the common thread with Fairfax & ABC.
    And they offer learnéd opinion about the cruel Capitalist system?
    ROFLMFAO!!!

  • 4
    Colleen Murrell
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    When I left the BBC some years back for a start-up, my boss tried to talk me out of it by saying that the start-up team is usually dispensed with once the operation is up and running as these staff are expensive (and often unionised).
    He was right as a couple of years in, many of the start-up team was picked off or left disillusioned as new hires were brought in on cheaper wages and worse pay deals.
    What has happened at The Global Mail is very sad as the venture was really exciting for international news coverage. The way that the company has dealt with its staff - especially Jess Hill - has been shocking and insensitive. I am sorry for these reporters and hope that they will find new opportunities soon as they are very talented. I predict the Global Mail’s reader numbers will continue in free fall until decent content emerges.

  • 5
    klewso
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Sounds more like “Animal Farm”?

  • 6
    colin@galvanisingideas.com
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    A preponderance of US work-experience & work-place culture is not necessarily the best training ground for the Oz mindset. Add that to what certainly looks like HR nepotism - well intentioned it may have been, but it looks pretty poor from outside - and the whole thing was a teetering edifice. I pity whoever funded the enterprise as well as the shoddily treated professionals who joined in good faith. All I can say is; now you’re all prepared to try the music industry. Go for it!

  • 7
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    Wood should clear the air and apologise to Hill. Maybe then he can close down the site and focus his attentions on The Guardian. I always thought the name was too close to the Canadian paper anyway.

  • 8
    Scott Grant
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    As a general reader, with no knowledge of what goes on inside the sausage factory, I found TGM, ultimately, boring, and disappointing. Some very good articles, with information I have not read elsewhere. But not enough. I still subscribe to their e-mails, and sometimes I will see something that I will click on and read. But, if I look around the site, I usually find little else that interests me that I have not already read.

    I almost never go to a site on the off-chance that I might find something interesting. If I susbscribe, I expect to be notified that there is something new that is worth my attention.

    One thing I noticed after the change of editorship, was that I began getting more frequent e-mails. Which I took as an indication that something had been broken and has been fixed.

    I hoped for more. I still do, although that is fading.

  • 9
    Kelly
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    I’m sure the Guardian will have no trouble attracting top journos to their Graeme Wood backed Australian venture now!

  • 10
    Fuller Steve
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    Maybe it’s time for TGM to do a report on corporate psychopaths - it sounds like they might have some inside information. I had high hopes for TGM and there were some good articles. However, they lacked volume and the letters to the editor seemed to be heavily managed or there were so few readers that very few were published - mine weren’t. It’s now Crikey and HuffPo for me.

  • 11
    warwick fry
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    I do take exception to the inclusion of Nick Olle as a reliable journalist on Latin American issues. Most of his stuff I have read was ill-informed spin-doctoring of anti- Chavez propanda.

  • 12
    Robert Merkel
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    While there are always going to be good and not-so-good articles published in any journalistic endeavour, I’ve found TGM to be very hit-and-miss.

    For a brand-new media publication, they seem completely ignorant of the work that’s been going on in data journalism. Furthermore, their editorial team doesn’t appear to know much about economics - this piece of innumerate rubbish about HSR is exemplary.

    It’s a shame that so much money has been blown, and personal trauma has been inflicted on many of its staff, to so little effect.

  • 13
    Andrew Chalmers
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    Nick Olle, the site’s former Latin America correspondent now based in Sydney, is Graeme Wood’s stepson.”

    It’s ironic that Graeme Wood condones the treatment of Jess Hill post brain surgery when he was so close to Nick Olle’s father Andrew … who died of a brain tumour.

  • 14
    Mike Flanagan
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

    It must be a slow news day!!!!
    The professional knavel gazing is getting more intense!

  • 15
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    Basically disagree with the strategic thrust of the story here. While agreeing one should go soft on the people who lost their jobs and hard on the issues.

    My view TGM does quality long form stories with a real indy streak. And indy is what counts.

    Secondly, with the threats to Fairfax ever closer, real democracy does not have the luxury of sledging TGM as a refuge for Fairfax of the 90ies. Indeed we should be so lucky. We need people who are likely to muscle up to the seriously nasty and powerful institutions, not just throw flaming cocktails that make a big noise and fizzle out.

    Thirdly, people getting crunched and losing their jobs is traumatic, no doubt. One has to read down the substance of the critique due to emotion to some degree. For instance evidence of improper behaviour is far more probative than generalised gripes. A sick worker with a brain tumour - that’s tragic but is it really TGM’s role to nurse her back to a gungho (not to mention dangerous) career. I mean might be time to not go back to the middle east what?

    4. Personally I think the side scroll is delightful, not for everyone but still very nice and elegant. Not every browser can read it? Come on, there only about 3 browsers that count.

    5. I don’t put all my chickens in crikey, or new matilda, not by a long shot.

    6. Graeme Wood is great with his public philanthropy. Never met the dude.

  • 16
    andrew.riddle36
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

    Hey Matthew Knott, while we’re talking about incompetence, do you realise you’ve used several quotes from Jess Hill twice, sometimes as unattributed comments and sometimes attributed to her? Don’t think qthat sort of thing happened much at ’90s Fairfax.

  • 17
    David Hand
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

    It’s often ugly to watch lefties run a business. Maybe they really believe the caricature they use to describe business is actually true.

    The global Mail’s fundamental problem has been that it ia a narrow preachy left wing editorial straight-jacket. I already subscribe to one of those.

  • 18
    S G
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Hey Matt

    Great yarn today re: TGM. I find it pompous, six weeks behind the news cycle and utterly devoid of insight. Delusions of grandeur.

    Their claimed “traffic spike” in February barely broke the 150,000 visits in a month mark.. far from being substantial. The rest was downhill.

    Anyway – I thought you might be interested in the follow chart – month on month traffic figures from Australia via measurement firm Experian Hitwise.

    See here:

  • 19
    S G
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 6:16 pm | Permalink

    Chart here:
    https://twitter.com/granleese/status/293615044355317760/photo/1

  • 20
    Mike Flanagan
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    I am sure I wasn’t the only potential reader of some of the TGM’s efforts to offer alternative views to the MSM, whose browser wasn’t suitable for their platform. I, along with many others, tried and gave it away after repeated unsuccessful attempts
    I suggest David, rather than ideological driven incompetence, it was tech and IT savvy that enabled a fair bit of their demise.
    Never the less we are nationally poorer with any reduction in the hybrid vigour of our fourth estate.

  • 21
    David Hand
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    I think you’ve got a point, Mike. I could never get the bottom two lines of each item to become visible in my browser during the horizontal phase. you had to guess what one line in about 25 said.

    As it happens, I had a look today and found an excellent article on the court case against Lehmann Brothers. But in general, I find their items boringly and predictably left wing. Though everyone is entitled to a viewpoint, adopting a firm left wing view in an independent media outlet is brave in 2013. It’s the lack of objectivity that undoes a media channel of either extreme. You know what they’re going to say before you read the article.

    Any story on climate change, boat people, Palestinians, Tony Abbott, Julia Gillard, the carbon tax, the NBN, the resources industry, live sheep or cattle exports or gay marriage is utterly predictable in the Global Mail. What’s the point of reading it?

  • 22
    AR
    Posted Tuesday, 22 January 2013 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

    Boring as batshit, not a single insight or new angle, the stories read like an ‘all-must-have-prizes’ exercise in a sheltered workshop for left-at-the-post luvvies.

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