tip off

Media briefs: Oz b-day … exclusive watch … Optus oops …

Guess whose birthday it is! Guess whose! OK, it’s not till July, but guess! The Australian is giving everyone plenty of time to buy it the best presents. Plus other media tidbits of the day.

It was The Oz that won it: Like an expectant child wanting to give its parents lots of time to organise the birthday presents, News Corp’s corporate affairs team yesterday gave Australia’s media writers plenty of time to plan for its 50th birthday. The Australian launched on July 15, 1964, and we can expect News Corp to go all out. There’ll be a “special digital hub” (so, a website) dedicated to the anniversary, a digital re-creation of the very first edition, a series of articles in the paper looking at the organ’s history, and a glossy collectors’ edition magazine, celebrating the best of 50 years.

The paper’s achievement’s haven’t always come easy. As editor Chris Mitchell said in the release, not everyone has agreed with the positions the paper took on important matters like floating the dollar, supporting competition and opposing the waste of public money. “But I think 23 years of uninterrupted growth — driven by key policies we advocated and implemented by brave politicians from both sides of politics — says we were right on the big issues.”

We’d like to plan our own celebration for the paper’s big five-oh, but are somewhat stuck for ideas. A pinanta? Do we bake a cake in the shape of Chris Mitchell’s face? Or do we make presents — complaints to ACMA about the ABC perhaps? If you’ve got an idea of how we can do our bit for the national celebrations, we’d love to hear it. — Myriam Robin

Exclusive watch: The Hoopla. We can’t imagine how any other media organisation could have known The Hoopla was putting up a paywall (The Hoopla at left, The Australian inset) …

The Hoopla

But seriously, The Hoopla is going behind a $120-a-year paywall ($75 if you get in before May 11). “The brutal fact is that we can no longer survive on advertising alone”, CEO Jane Waterhouse said in a statement. There’s a video explaining the decision here. On the video, editor Wendy Harmer expands on the theme: “To pay our writers fairly… would take a great deal of advertising, and we know our readers are not interested in the pop-up ads.” The website is also pioneering a 99c single-day pass for those keen on checking it out.

Correction of the day: This one’s on Optus. A series of ads broadcast between January 26 and February 18, when the Victorian Supreme Court told Optus to stop airing it, seems to have got quite a few things wrong (one example of the ads pictured below).

Optus

That includes how much of Australia the Optus and Telstra mobile networks each cover (they cover about a third of the figures stated above - 30.6%), the graphic used to illustrate this, and the fact that there was hardly any difference between Optus and Telstra for coverage (“the differences are material and substantial,” the corrective advertisement reads). The court made Optus take out ads correcting the record in today’s papers …

Video of the day. Clive Palmer appeared on Ten’s Studio 10 for quite a combative interview …

Front page of the day. New York’s Daily News is surprisingly sane on gun control …

3
  • 1
    zut alors
    Posted Thursday, 3 April 2014 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

    Re the Clive Palmer interview: a brilliant example of what the Oz public would be subjected to without the high standard set by the ABC. This is the alternative, folks.

    Peter Meakin would do well to stop such unfettered drivel going to air whilst trying to promote Ten as a network with news credibility. No number of promos featuring Monroe, Riminton et al can counteract the paucity of talent on this panel. While Palmer can sometimes appear to be the clown he had stiff competition from this bunch, they claimed his title outright. No contest.

  • 2
    Liamj
    Posted Friday, 4 April 2014 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    50th birthday for The Australian, what to get the spoilt child of the worlds most reactionary sugar daddy: freedom from his creepily constant controlling gaze would be best, but failing that, colonic irrigation, 200mg of lsd, and a puppy.

  • 3
    JohnB
    Posted Sunday, 6 April 2014 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    My wife has decided not to pay $120 per year to get behind Hoopla’s paywalls.

    That frees up half an hour daily for “kitchen, church and children” as the pastor at our wedding described women’s place.

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