Seniors do a cabbie: Stripping off on the Flinders/Swanston intersection worked for taxi drivers, so why not for angry pensioners? The Age reports that Family First’s Steven Fielding has made good on his threat today and stripped off in protest against a lack of support for seniors in this week’s Federal Budget. Commuters copped an eyeful as “up to 200 elderly people stood at the corner of Swanston and Flinders Streets this morning. ‘John’, 69, who ran off into the intersection and stripped off to his underpants, said the budget was a ‘slap in the face’ for pensioners. ‘More needs to be done,’ he said. Police tried to coax him away from the intersection but a swarm of other pensioners joined him before officers could stop them. Another woman stripped down to her bra and longjohns during the protest. Police then escorted the pensioners back up to the steps of Flinders Street Station after about 15 minutes.” We searched desperately for pics on deadline, but this was all we could find for now…

Letter of the Week: Alexander Downer loves Adelaide. You should too. From the SMH letters section today ( click here or on the image to enlarge ):

New ABC London correspondent is no stay-at-home mum . It may not sound much, but the ABC has broken with tradition and is sending a mother and three kids to London to be the correspondent. Business reporter, Emma Alberici, who has just returned from maternity leave after having her third child, is off to London (with husband in tow) in August, replacing Raphael Epstein, who did some very solid reporting on the Mohamed Haneef story last year. He’s returning to Melbourne. — Glenn Dyer

More news on Seven . Seven Network has a longer news bulletin tonight (in Sydney and Brisbane at least) at 10.30pm to 11pm. It’s rare, its been there for some time in a short length as the network tries to cover the hour until the AFL replay in northern markets happens at 11.30pm. Tonight it’s a half hour of news. It will probably stay for most, if not all the AFL season. Will Seven then keep it in the slot to take on Ten’s late News/ Sports Tonight and Nine’s Nightline ? — Glenn Dyer

Dancing With The Stars moves production house . The Seven network has moved production of the new series of Dancing With The Stars from Granada to the Freehand production company, which is 25% owned by BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the BBC. There was also some angst at Seven when Granada produced a program called Dancing On Ice in 2006 as a ice version of Dancing With The Stars. There was a feeling at Seven that that was a deal by Granada that went a little too far. — Glenn Dyer

Last night’s TV ratings
The Winners:
Seven News won with 1.335 million people, from Hell’s Kitchen on Nine at 8.30pm, with 1.311 million, while Nine’s Getaway had its best audience of the year so far with 1.257 million. Today Tonight was next with 1.219 million and the 7pm ABC News was 5th with 1.181 million, just ahead of Nine News with 1.173 million. Seven’s How I Met Your Mother averaged 1.147 million at 8pm and Home and Away averaged 1.109 million at 7pm, beaten by the ABC News! Seven returned Bones to OK numbers at 8.30pm with 1.072 million and A Current Affair languished in 10th spot with 1.045 million. Seven’s 7.30pm program, That 70’s Show averaged 1.040 million and 12th was Ten’s Law And Order SVU with 1.039 million at 8.30pm and the network’s high point for the night. Nine’s repeat of Two And A Half Men at 7pm averaged 999,000 and The Footy Shows, 998,000.

The Losers: Trinny & Susannah Undress The Nation on Seven at 9.30pm. Once driven from the cringe-making NRL Footy Show last night, I switched to Seven and saw a program even more mortifying — Trinny and Susannah. It averaged 793,000 last night, down around 360,000 on last week: the audience has spoken on this one. Equally viewers want to forget the lyrics on Ten at 7.30pm: 774,000 watched Don’t Forget the Lyrics at 7.30pm. Big Brother averaged 852,000 from 7pm to 7.30pm for Ten. SBS’s repeat of Inspector Rex, 266,000 at 8.30pm. Shame on SBS.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally but lost Melbourne heavily and drew Adelaide with Nine. Today Tonight won everywhere with a tiny margin in Brisbane. Both programs shed tens of thousands of viewers in Sydney to fall under 300,000 viewers each. The 7pm ABC News was second behind Seven in the news rankings in Sydney last night and easily beat Seven into second in Melbourne. Nine’s Nightline averaged 465,000 viewers after The Footy Shows. The 7.30 Report averaged 796,000 at 8pm. Lateline averaged 224,000 and Lateline Business, 139,000. The 6.30pm SBS News, 176,000 and 173,000 for the late News at 9.30pm. 7am Sunrise 416,000, 7am Today 290,000.

The Stats: Nine won the 6pm to midnight All People with 31.5% (31.6%) from Seven with 27.0% (28.7%), Ten with 21.5% (17.8%), the ABC with 14.9% (16.1%) and SBS with 5.1% (5.8%). Nine won all metro markets bar Perth where Seven won. Nine leads the week 28.5% from 26.2% for Seven. the AFL and Better Homes And Gardens will push Seven back in front after tonight. In regional areas a win to WIN/NBN with 30.6% from Prime/7Qld with 28.8% from Southern Cross (Ten ) with 21.9%, the ABC 13.3% and SBS 5.3%.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Gordon Ramsay was hot last night on Nine, but The Footy Shows weren’t as the audiences fell under a million viewers. The AFL version still attracted a respectable 404,000, but that’s 80,000 off its peak and the NSW and Queensland versions didn’t get much traction from being a precursor for next week’s first State Of Origin game. In fact one segment I saw on the NRL program in Sydney involved putting a white rat in a box and leaving it on the desk of a former footballer at NRL HQ in Sydney. And this was supposed to be funny! Tonight there’s some football and some home hints on Seven, some football on Nine and lots of Big Brother on Ten, and a new Silent Witness and Spooks on the ABC.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports

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