Mark Scott, MD of the ABC, should be on your shortlist to replace Fairfax CEO David Kirk. It’s what Scott’s been angling for, every since he got to the ABC… a return to Fairfax as head banana. Look back on the way he has driven (and I mean driven) the ABC’s surge in digital media content and delivery platforms… most recently at the expense of Radio National. It’s where Fairfax has wanted to be for ages but hasn’t been able to pull it off. Scott will ditch the ABC in an instant for the Fairfax gig.

How is it that Chief Economist with Austrade Tim Harcourt is able to have a colour ad for his new book, The Airport Economist, on the back of his government business cards? Do we pay for this?

It really must feel like Christmas at the Granville offices of the NSW Branch of the National Union of Workers with the news that Transport Workers Union boss Tony Sheldon has announced he is quitting his NSW post of State Secretary of the TWU NSW Branch. The NUW/TWU feud has been on for a number of years but it was the NUW that decided to play hard ball with a number of strategic hits via the media. Most notable of the attacks was the expose of the TWU employer funded slush accounts by Ross Coultart on Channel Nine’s Sunday program and a swag of articles in both the Australian and the Sydney Morning Herald. With Sheldon retreating to the TWU Federal Secretary job, a position which he himself has gutted over the past few years, it may mean the intense rivalry between the two unions may calm down. With Sheldon finally flying the white flag many in the NSW unions scene are a little worried that NUW boss Derrick Belan and his media man Mark Ptolemy may have a rush of blood to their heads and decide to look for enemies in other quarters.

Sandra Eccles, General Manager, Canberra Government Relations Australia is leaving GAR. She is going to top firm Gavin Anderson and Company (Canberra). Reason? More interesting work and better environment. When? She resigned yesterday and is starting at GA early 09.

Mark Reid, the bookmaker, is advertising his Noosa hinterland home at Cooroy 4563 on Realestate.com.au for 7.5 million using the owners own discount sales company Vode Property Bondi.

Lynette Philips, Sales Director of The Women’s Division at ACP, has been appointed Publisher and Pat Ingram’s successor. The rumour is that there will be a major sacking at ACP today.

ANZ has a $1.2 billion written-off exposure to shipping that has not been disclosed. Is the massive fall in the Baltic Dry shipping index to blame, or do we lay this one at the feet of former CEO John McFarlane and his band of merry men?

The Northern Territory Department of Education and Training has told its employees that a condition of attending the upcoming World Indigenous People’s Conference on Education in Melbourne is that they don’t mention the word “bilingual” in any presentation or talk publicly (especially to the media!) about the current policy of clamping down on bilingual education.

Crikey/Media Monitors radio rumour watch reports:

  • Presenter Matthew Abraham advises Nick Xenophon called while heading home after an interesting night in the Senate. Xenophon was in the security queue and John and Jeanette Howard were in front of him. He says John Howard had to have his shoes scanned and bags checked. — ABC 891 (Adelaide) 8.34am
  • Caller Kim claims a Victorian Government Minister is being investigated by the Office of Police Integrity for using police files inappropriately on two separate occasions. Presenter Ross Stevenson says he will follow it up, noting Kim has provided the comperes with a name. — 3AW (Melbourne) 7.10am
  • Richmond Football Club say they have no plans to draft Ben Cousins and the City of Greater Geelong says there is no truth to the rumour that “White Christmas” has been banned from Christmas carols. — 3AW (Melbourne) 8:15am
  • The rumour one foreign player is missing from the Homeless Soccer World Cup being held in Melbourne and others may seek asylum here has been denied by organisers. — 3AW (Melbourne) 8.28am
  • Presenter Ali Moore interviews Eddie McGuire and wonders if there is truth in the rumour that he has accepted a job in radio. McGuire says he has had offers from radio stations but has not made a decision yet. — ABC 774 (Melbourne) 9.06am
  • Caller Tom has heard all the water bills are going to be going up 20% to pay for the desalination plant in Adelaide. He asks what benefit the regional areas are going to get from this; places like Port Augusta and Eyre Peninsula. Presenter David Bevan says he supposes the Government would argue that infrastructure is built in regional SA that Adelaide people pay for, so it all just goes into the mix. — ABC 891 (Adelaide) 9.06am