News.com.au let the courts decide. And people wonder why Dennis Ferguson can’t get a jury trial…

 

And then:

TEN cutting staff hours. Network TEN is urging employees to reduce their hours and forcing staff to take leave over Easter while its major shareholder CanWest attempts to hold off bankers … The leaked email orders all ‘non essential’ staff to take a minimum of two days off over Easter. Workers without accumulated leave should take unpaid holidays over the period. Staff with long service leave are also being forced to take time off. — TV Tonight

Sky steps up for Australia Network bid. Pay-TV channel Sky News will next year bid to provide the federal Government’s international channel when the current contract with the ABC expires. — The Australian

2GB Radio king Alan Jones 140th radio rating win. The 2GB breakfast king claimed top spot in the timeslot he has made his own, putting more distance between himself and his commercial rivals. With ratings points converting to advertising dollars in today’s tight media market, Jones added more listeners to his audience, snaring 17.6 per cent of the breakfast share. His nearest competition – ABC702 – were almost 5 percentage points behind. — News.com.au

Radio ratings show Triple J is doing something right. ABC radio station Triple J has had one of its best ratings starts to the year ever, data from the first radio ratings survey for 2009 released today shows. Triple J was the strongest performer across the early morning, breakfast, morning and afternoon sessions with percentage points increases of 3.3, 1.8, 4.9 and 4.7 respectively. — PerthNow

Housten Chronicle to lay off 10% of work force. In a Feb. 13 memo to employees obtained by the Houston Business Journal , Chronicle Publisher and President Jack Sweeney said the newspaper planned a reorganization extending over 60 days which included a reduction in the work force of at least 10 percent. — Housten Business Journal

Betting on bad debts. Vulture investors like Carl Icahn, Charlie Ergen, Carlos Slim and John Malone are buying up media companies’ debt not to save struggling companies, but instead to generate high yields or position themselves to have a voice in a potential bankruptcy or to gain control of a company on the cheap. — New York Post

Uncovered! The unseemly side of quilts. Mark Lipinski, the editor of Quilter’s Home, knew that the January/February issue might be perceived as scandalous … Jo-Ann Fabric and Crafts, the sewing and scrapbooking mega-chain with several locations in the Washington area, opted not to carry the sordid edition — a little “too hot” for Jo-Ann is what Lipinski says his distributor told him. — The Washington Post

Let a thousand journalistic flowers bloom. Out of the wreckage of the Rocky Mountain News comes news that new Web sites are sprouting in Denver, featuring the work of former Rocky staffers who have gone out on their own. Good for them. — Recovering Journalist

Is writing for the rich? If publishers are failing because they cannot charge readers for words, where does that leave writers? — The Week

Peter Fray

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