Oz not quite so exclusive as they think. The Australian today tried to claim that its version of the collapse of the Chinalco-Rio Tinto deal was an exclusive. The story had a red-lettered “Exclusive” tag:

The biggest deal in Australian corporate history, the $US19.5 billion ($24.4 billion) alliance between Rio Tinto and Chinese resources giant Chinalco, was heading for collapse last night, sparing the Rudd Government from one of its toughest foreign policy decisions.

There was speculation that Rio Tinto would walk away from Chinalco overnight and instead seal a joint venture with its bitter rival, BHP Billiton, involving their iron ore operations in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.

That’s a bit rich when it was on the Financial Times website before 10.30 pm Thursday and the version on the FT website now was updated at 2.06 am Friday, Sydney time. By then the other papers had matching reports, so there was nothing “Exclusive” about The Australian ‘s report, except in the mind of its award winning editor in chief. — Glenn Dyer

Swine Flu treatment with snout. Today’s ABC online story ” Swine flu tally nears 900” is accompanied by a delightful photograph of a doctor in what appears to be a pig mask treating a Swine Flu patient:

Ten Twitter insult. Comedian Josh Thomas (from Talking Bout Your Generation on Channel Ten) is a fairly avid Tweeter and has mentioned MasterChef a few times. Last night as soon as Masterchef finished and Rules of Engagement started, he tweeted “and the nation turns Ten off”:

Obviously he got a little twitchy about insulting his employer so publicly, so deleted the tweet not long after. — Amber Jamieson

Sunday Night press releases, now with extra-Virgin. The latest press release from the Channel Seven program Sunday Night comes with an additional Virgin Blue advertisement embedded. How thoughtful:

Carey’s power trumps the Murdoch kids. The News Corp statement yesterday was unclear on whether the new powerbroker at Rupert’s empire, Chase Carey, would control everything, or just offshore businesses with Rupert overseeing the US. The statement merely referred to “global operations” and earlier reports had Mr Murdoch retaining control of the US businesses. But today the staff journal The Australian printed a correction:

In a statement, the company said Mr Carey would oversee the group’s “global operations” and would be based with Mr Murdoch in New York. A spokesman also confirmed the new chiefs of the Fox film and TV businesses would now report to Mr Carey instead of Mr Murdoch.

Mr Carey’s return will also prompt speculation he has also replaced Mr Chernin as Mr Murdoch’s nominated successor.

No mention in The Australian ‘s report that Mr Carey’s new titles and roles would place him above James Murdoch, and a long way in front of brother, Lachlan. Very few people from outside the News Ltd/News International camp who have flown high in News and around Rupert, survive for long. I’m thinking of the like of Harold Evans, Andrew Knight (the former Editor of The Economist, now just a director), Peter Chernin (who did last more than a decade) and Mr Carey, who preferred to remain with Direct TV when it was sold to John Malone’s Liberty group in exchange for News Corp voting shares. Not even Lachlan and daughter Elizabeth (and the first daughter, Prudence), could last the distance.

So how long will Mr Carey last, especially against the ambitious James, the chairman and Chief executive of News Europe and Asia, but no more if Mr Carey is his boss? — Glenn Dyer

Reality TV contestants have workers’ rights, French court rules. Contestants from the French version of Temptation Island have won compensation for unfair dismissal as well as the right to be treated as salaried workers — paving the way for legal claims from other reality contestants and potentially heralding the death knell for the genre across the channel. Mon dieu. On the face of it, of course, this is a wonderful story combining a classic and noble French stress on the rights of the workers with, how shall we put it, a certain self-regard. — Guardian

Paid content won’t work because journalists are ego freaks. “We are egomaniacs,”  Gawker chief Nick Denton said, referring to writers. “We like to get out in the public eye.” When journalists are put behind a paywall, which The Times experimented with, they aren’t happy. “They fall out of the public discussion,” he said. Media organizations have to figure out what content might be valuable enough to put behind a paywall without purging readers altogether, he said. “We are not all going to make our living off of advertising,”  WSJ online editor Alan Murray said. — New York Observer

JWT builds giant doll for Allens lollies. Pediophobes (that’s people who suffer from a fear of dolls) hopefully stayed well away from the April ad shoot in Brisbane that produced this commercial from JWT Sydney for Allen’s Confectionery:


It shows a 30-foot-tall doll, created with help from animatronics expert John Cox (an Oscar winner for his work on Babe ), delighting a crowd by blowing huge oblong lolly bubbles that explode and rain down normal-size jelly snakes. — AdFreak

How Fox News defies ratings gravity. Forget about political winds and social trends. The dominance of Fox News in the cable ratings race has lasted through wartime and peacetime, boom and recession, Republican and Democrat. It’s not a product of circumstance — it’s a law of nature: irresistible, irreducible and seemingly immutable. It’s tempting to ascribe Fox’s surge to the change in administration. There’s something to this. Political media outlets, whether print, web or broadcast, tend to flourish in opposition. But Fox has never fit this mold. — Daily Finance

NYT Co: Globe could still close. Globe reporter Brian Mooney has been urging his fellow Boston Newspaper Guild members to vote no this Monday — he’s confidence that the Times Co. won’t follow through on its threat to close the paper:

I think we’ve put to bed the notion that they can afford to make good on that threat, because the Times Company’s own finances are so fragile, the cost of closing us would wreck the parent company.

In the past week or two everyone — including Globe publisher Steve Ainsley — has stopped talking about the Globe’s possible closure. Times spokeswoman Catherine Mathis said the Globe can be closed and might:

The Guild seems to believe it can reject the contract, prevent implementation and thereby force further negotiation. That’s not right. Time is of the essence.

Boston Phoenix

TechCrunch set to build e-reader prototype. Step aside Kindle and Cool-er, TechCrunch is making an e-reader, called the CrunchPad. With the designs out now the CrunchPad prototype will be in their office in just a few weeks. Here is the design:

With e-readers starting to flood the American and European markets, the next question here at Crikey is when Australia will be getting ours?