Glenn Dyer writes:

No doubt the folk at Nine’s A Current Affair thought it would be a good story to contrast the salary of a Nine cleaner ($500 a week) with the much higher salaries of some in the TV industry here and overseas. But why didn’t ACA highlight the salaries of some closer to home, rather than those on other networks or overseas (although Bert Newton did get a jokey mention)?

For example, former ACA host, Ray Martin, one of the highest earning people on Australian TV, is paid more than $2 million a year (that’s more than $40,000 a week), while another former ACA host Mike Munro is reportedly paid well over $1.2 million a year (that’s around $25,000 a week). Why not ACA host Tracy Grimshaw’s salary, or even Nine boss Eddie McGuire, who is reported to be paid even more than Ray Martin, somewhere north of $3 million (around $60,000 a week). Too close to home, that’s why.

There’s a saying at Nine that a salary of one million dollars a year is a “Westie” – named after John Westacott, the executive producer of 60 Minutes, who was paid more than $1 million in the 2005 financial year according to the PBL annual report. While he doesn’t get as much now, it’s still a lot more than the $500 a week highlighted in mock outrage for the cleaner, which was the most outrageous piece of the entire story. And Grimshaw’s jokey back announce that the cleaner would be looking for appearance fees was a bit much: he doesn’t get a large salary, so why not pay him something for appearing in the story?

Peter Fray

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