Perth’s Access31 to end with a whimper? An anonymous Crikey reader writes: “Notices were sent to members on June 5th for an ‘Emergency Meeting’ to be held at the Station on the 27th. Subject is a special resolution ‘that the company be wound up voluntarily’. Perth’s community TV station has operated since June 18th 1999. Recently a new transmitter was installed to broaden reception for the mix of classic movies, reruns of unforgettable shows like Bonanza and Peter Gunn and of course a stew of locally produced entertainments. Perth’s weekly one-hour variety show, The Couch has been picked up by the Adelaide community station for broadcast. The standard of the shows was variable, but by God, they were alive. The main reason offered for the closure is the erosion of audience by digital TV to which Access31 has not been given access. There are of course many other problems, managerial direction is a movable feast, professional ‘expertise’ can be a bit dodgy, and the bulk of the work is done by volunteers. And this will be the biggest loss. Work experience for volunteers has often led to full-time positions in commercial TV. It’s a wonderful resource for media students, providing excellent facilities and training and hands-on experience. If Perth goes, can the rest of Australia be far behind? Is another tiny outlet for original Oz entertainment to be snuffed out?

Another giant leap for feminism at Nine Eddie McGuire showed again this week why Channel 9 can’t shake the s-xism label dogging the network. On 3AW spruiking his stint hosting A Current Affair filling in for regular host Tracy Grimshaw, McGuire came out with this gem:

I’m only filling in because Leila McKinnon she’s gone, she’s sleeping with the boss, I’m not sure if you know about that, she’s married to David Gyngell, so they’re off doing some CEO business this week. (listen here.)

While Eddie might not have a problem airing other people’s personal plans, Leila probably would. Between Sam Newman’s on air adventures with a mannequin and news director John Westacott’s use of the f**kability test for female journos, Nine have already been pushing their female viewers away, so Nine don’t need their biggest star adding to the pain. Eddie gave ACA a much needed ratings boost last night without a great deal of publicity. Perhaps he should leave that side of things to Gyng … — Lachlan Taylor

Everything old is new again. I’m not sure what to make of the brief profile of former Foreign Minister Gareth Evans in The Age today. The article covers former Senator Evans’ role as Foreign Minister, ashtray-thrower and recruiter of a former Democrats leader to his side of the fence. The article ends thus:

Mr Evans now heads the International Crisis Group set up to provide scrutiny and analysis of existing and emerging wars and lesser problems and possible solutions.

He has reputedly mellowed since his days in Parliament but no one who knows him has any doubt that he’ll tackle his new job with his old gusto.

New job? According to the first sentence of this entry on the United Nations website dated October 2003:

Gareth Evans has been since January 2000 President and Chief Executive of the Brussels-based International Crisis Group (ICG)…

I’d have thought the good folk at The Age would have realised that this “new” news has … er … aged somewhat. — Irfan Yusuf

Liz Smith thinks Col Allen’s a sh-t? Gawker is asking just who New York Post gossip queen Liz Smith is talking about when she refers to her boss as an “absolute total sh-t” on women’s website WowOwow . The popular money is on Post editor, Australian Col Allan:

It’s known around the Post newsroom that Liz Smith despises Col Allan, the tabloid’s grumpy, pugnacious Aussie editor. It was he who cut Smith’s column down to three times a week, and she didn’t appreciate it. Now, when forgetful people call her up to ask why she’s not published more often, her response is, “CALL RUPERT.” So she likely thinks Rupert Murdoch isn’t a great boss, either!

Lily Tomlin on the other hand, is there for every beckon call for her boss, whether it be feeding, washing or just giving her undivided attention. But before you get too jealous, Tomlin’s boss is no human… it’s her cat. — Lachlan Taylor

Last night’s TV ratings
The Winners:
 Seven News was number one with 1.718 million people, with Nine News second with 1.517 million. Border Security was third for Seven at 7.30pm with 1.515 million and Nine’s Sea Patrol won 8.30pm with 1.491 million. Today Tonight was 5th with 1.470 million and A Current Affair, hosted by Eddie McGuire, was next with 1.429 million viewers. Ten News averaged 1.355 million and was boosted by the AFL game. David Attenborough’s Lion – A Spy in the Den averaged 1.339 million at 7.30pm for Nine. Seven’s Surf Patrol averaged 1.336 million at 8pm and Home and Away was in 10th spot with 1.334 million at 7pm. Desperate Housewives averaged 1.318 million for the first of the two last episodes for this season, and Nine’s repeat of Two and A Half Men averaged 1.286 million. The 7pm ABC News averaged 1.286 million and CSI New York averaged 1.134 million at 9.30pm for Nine.

The Losers: Big Brother at 906,000 is low, but we know it’s tanking this year. How To Look Good Naked, 789,000. Again hurt by the bogans on BB. A local version would be very interesting to see. The ABC’s Australian Story at 8pm showed Sydney iron person, Candace Falzon. It was a bit better than I expected and the audience seemed to agree: it averaged 969,000 at 8pm.

News & CA: Seven News again won nationally and in every market but Melbourne Today Tonight had to use its big Perth margin to beat Eddie and ACA: ACA won Sydney and Melbourne: TT won Brisbane by 1,000 viewers and was a clear winner in Adelaide and Perth. The 7.30 Report averaged 818,000, Lateline, 322,000. Nine’s Nightline averaged 212,000, Ten’s late News/Sports Tonight, 347,000. Four Corners, 841,000, Media Watch, 729,000. SBS News, 297,000, the 9.30pm edition, 168,000. 7am Sunrise, 313,000, 7am Today, 234,000.

The Stats: Nine won 6pm to midnight all people with a share of 28.9% (29.3%); Seven with a share of 27.7% (28.5%) Ten with 18.1% (18.0%), the ABC with 17.1% (16.9%), and SBS with 8.2% (7.3%). Nine won Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Seven won Sydney and Perth. Nine leads the week 30.2% to 26.6%. The ABC is still third with 18.5% to Ten with 17.7%. Ten will move into third tonight. In regional Australia a win for Nine through WIN/NBN with 33.2% from Prime/7Qld with 25.6%, Southern Cross (Ten) with 17.6%, the ABC with 15.9% and SBS with 7.8%.

Glenn Dyer’s comments: Nine had a narrow but solid win to go with the very solid result on Sunday night. But last night was a night of two markets: Seven won Sydney easily, Nine won Melbourne easily. It was though the audience was from two planets. Seven programs (Home and Away, Desperate Housewives, Border Security, Surf Patrol and Boston Legal won Sydney and lost Melbourne to Nine. Border Security was the exception: it won both markets. Seven news and TT won Sydney, Nine News and ACA won Melbourne. It is a programmers nightmare. Nine was also solid in Brisbane from 7pm. Nine will win the week easily after these two nights and the boost it will get from Wednesday night’s second State of Origin League match in Brisbane, especially in that market. Seven won All People last week with solid gains Friday and Saturday. The ABC had its highest share of the year, the Ten network its lowest as Big Brother‘s ratings slump takes their toll. Four Corners was depressing on boozing, Media Watch was good and Andrew Denton’s More Than Enough Rope screened a program on a group called The Merrymakers. It put all the rubbish on ACA and TT into context, especially ACA and its gangster PR effort last night. Eddie and Nine are a soft touch for the crims of Melbourne. They would buy old rope. Tonight its Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares Revisited on Nine against All Saints on Seven. Seven’s Australia’s Got Talent at 7.30pm. Ten has fresh Simpsons and NCIS, but also has BB. The ABC has Big Cat Diary.

Source: OzTAM, TV Networks reports