Glenn Dyer’s television report yesterday included the following:

And Seven winning in Sydney was not the big story – these
days that is the “ho-hum” news from the daily Oztam figures. The big
story was in Melbourne where viewers are “rusted” on to Nine News,
especially when there’s a big news story. But not last night, as Seven
News in Melbourne toppled Nine, 424,000 viewers to 384,000 on average.
It was a comprehensive win and follows wins on three nights last week
in Melbourne (something of a rarity).

Did the dramatic
beating of cameraman Matt Rose play a big part in that victory? Rose’s
bashing featured prominently on talk-back radio in the afternoon and
the network made him available for media interviews ahead of the news
bulletin.

Naturally, Rose didn’t speak to Channel Nine so Seven
had the better story. You only had to look at the big run Seven gave
the story again last night, complete with another interview with their
brave employee, who didn’t miss a day’s work, to know they were onto a
ratings winner. However, Nine News in Melbourne resumed its normal
ascendancy last night, with an average of 446,000 viewers to 354,000
for Seven.

Meanwhile, I paced out 60 steps between the exit of
the Melbourne Magistrate’s Court complex and Tuesday’s melee on William
St yesterday. There is a minor issue about media harassment, although
this in no way justifies the brutal thuggery.

Remember all the media outrage, especially from Seven’s Today Tonight,
about the bouncer who followed David Hookes down the street. Following
family or friends of those charged almost 50 metres away from the court
is clearly excessive, and whilst some of the pack had dropped off, the
vision shows there were still plenty doing the stalking.

As Hugo
Kelly pointed out yesterday, the Muslim community desperately needs a
decent spin doctor. Whilst overt Muslim community anger with the media
subsided slightly in Melbourne yesterday, aggressive attacks on
television crews continued in Sydney, where the tipping off of the
media about the location of the raids was clearly an inflammatory
mistake.

More punched cameramen and reporters

There
have been a few new new entries to our attacked cameraman list, which
we’re expanding to include journalists of all descriptions. One curious
trend is the fast-track that Channel Nine seems to give those who get
attacked. Eddie McGuire, Karl Stefanovic and Helen Kapalos are the
three examples we cite. Keep the new entries and corrections coming to
[email protected]:

Three man SBS crew: reporter Adrian
Flood, cameraman Mick O’Brien and sound engineer Andrew Smailes were
all brutally ambushed and bashed by about 10 men after interviewing
Lebanese Muslim Association spokesman Keysar Trad in his office across
the road from the Lakemba mosque in August 2002. Trad’s staff tried to
stop it.

Eddie McGuire: Tony Lockett threw one of his crutches when injured at then Channel Ten reporter Eddie McGuire back in the late 1980s.

Damien Barrett:The Courier Mail’s
AFL reporter was elbowed in the stomach by Brisbane Lions football
director Scott Clayton in the carpark after a tribunal hearing in
August 1998.

Karl Stefanovic: The Today show host
was a Brisbane-based reporter in December 2001 when he was king hit by
the brother of Gary Paul, who was on trial for car stealing, dangerous
driving and assaulting police. When Ten reporter Paul Kennedy asked an A Current Affair cameraman why he was being so friendly with someone who had just whacked his own colleague, the ACA cameraman tried to pick a fight with Kennedy, who walked away.

Joe Barbaro: the career criminal and father of kidnapped baby Montana lashed out at a camera crew outside court last year as the MediaWatch introduction reminds us every week.