Chaser‘s fall guy. The Chaser team is supposed to push the boundaries. It’s what they do. Aren’t they entitled to assume that if they go too far, the layers of ABC management above them will pull them back? Amanda Duthie, Head of Arts, Entertainment and Comedy at ABC Television, told Media Watch that she did view the “Make a Realistic Wish” skit before it aired and she had approved the skit for broadcast.

But what Ms Duthie and Media Watch didn’t say is that The Chaser program is actually pre-recorded on Tuesday nights, 24 hours before it goes to air. Ms Duthie and her friend and boss, the ABC’s executive head of content, Courtney Gibson would have had a long time to view the finished program. Hours and hours.

Ms Duthie has the gig because she’s nominally in charge of the program, but Ms Gibson is head of all content on ABC TV and given The Chaser‘s background, you’d be entitled to expect that senior executives would view every program every week. But from what Ms Duthie says, she’s taking the can.

The Chaser is now off air for two weeks while the ABC reviews the processes. It doesn’t take two weeks to review the processes. That could be done in a day. The Chaser is really off air to let the publicity subsidise and be replaced by some other cause or scandal in the public’s eye. There’s nothing wrong with the process, it’s those who implement who are at fault and that’s where the axe should fall, if anyone is going to take the fall on this skit.

It’s likely that after 10 days there will be a press release from the ABC trumpeting new processes etc, The Chaserettes will appear contrite and go through a ritualistic self flensing for the TV cameras and outside media and every episode will be reviewed by the relevant executives, who should have done so in the first place. — Glenn Dyer

Why the Chasergate furore is about the future of the ABC. So let’s recap. You’ve got presenters celebrated for pushing boundaries. They do precisely that with something in incredible bad taste. But the show’s prerecorded, so it gets referred upwards to the woman in charge. For some inexplicable reason she allows it to go to air. The media gets into it. The public is outraged — even to the extent that credible questions are asked about the standing and funding of the public service broadcaster. The level of genuine public anger is pretty much unprecedented. The show is suspended and the woman who let it through faces a major career issue, so does the MD, a chap called Mark. If you haven’t already worked it out, I’m not talking about last week’s scandal over The Chaser, but what went on in the UK late last year. — Mumbrella

Bravo Tracy Grimshaw. Gordan Ramsay is the only pig around here. GR went on an outrageous tirade against Tracy during a cooking demonstration on Saturday in front of 3000 shocked people. Today he was at it again:

The potty-mouthed chef, who was presenting another cooking session at the Good Food & Wine Show, told the crowd he and the A Current Affair host had been longtime lovers.

“We were secret lovers for 20 years,’’ he said before dismissing it as a joke. “No, I didn’t go there and I didn’t go down. I didn’t stoop that low for God’s sake.”

Ramsay, who referred to Grimshaw as a pig woman during his show last Saturday, opened today’s proceedings with a declaration of love for the television host. “I think she’s gorgeous, s-xy, vibrant, stunning, natural talented, articulated, beautiful and just stunning,’’ he said to hoots of laughter from the crowd. “Let’s see what sh-t hits the press floor on that shall we.”

It’s hardly surprising that Gordan Ramsay is a foul-mouthed misogynist pig. Unforgivable but unsurprising. What is surprising is that his Australian sponsors (who has brought him out here other than The Lifestyle Channel who broadcast his show? He’s no longer a ratings winner for Nine) have not dropped him and kicked his arse back to Britain.mamamia

North Korea sentences US reporters to 12 years labor. North Korea convicted two American journalists and sentenced them Monday to 12 years of hard labor for crossing into its territory, intensifying the reclusive nation’s confrontation with the United States. The Obama administration said it would pursue “all possible channels” to win the release of Laura Ling and Euna Lee, reporters for former Vice President Al Gore’s San Francisco-based Current TV media venture. There are fears Pyongyang is using the women as bargaining chips as the U.N. debates a new resolution to punish the country for its defiant May 25 atomic test and as North Korea seeks to draw Washington into direct negotiations. — Brietbart

Can computer nerds save journalism? Word to those who think the Internet spells the end of traditional print media: “hacker journalists” have arrived to save the day. Programmers and journalists may seem like strange bedfellows; many criticize the Internet for the layoffs, buyouts and bleeding bottom lines that characterize the news business today. But, as emphasized by a report released last month by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the World Association of Newspapers, traditional news outlets must “cross the digital abyss” if they wish to survive. The problem, of course, is scraping together the capital to invest in new technologies. — Time

John Pilger and Roddy Doyle back journalist over Real IRA interviews. Investigative journalist John Pilger, The Crying Game actor Stephen Rea and The Van author Roddy Doyle are among 5,000 people to sign a union petition backing the refusal of a Belfast journalist to hand over material relating to interviews with the Real IRA. Suzanne Breen, the Northern Ireland editor of the Dublin-based Sunday Tribune newspaper, is facing up to five years in jail for refusing to hand over information about the murder of two British soldiers by the dissident republican terrorist group. Breen’s legal team has said her life would be at risk from the Real IRA if she surrendered any information related to her reports or revealed her sources. — Guardian

Will the new iPhone save old media? Promising for the print media is the newly-added ability to purchase content from within iPhone applications. A startup called Scrollmotion demonstrated from Apple’s stage its forthcoming reader software and boasted it would offer 50 major magazines, 170 daily newspapers and 1 million books. Apple’s terms would let them keep 70 percent of the sale price of their content — a pretty good deal in comparison to selling content on the Kindle, where Amazon and its wireless carrier reportedly keep close to 70 percent of the money. — Gawker

Murdoch: Obama is dangerous. Rupert Murdoch told Fox Business Network’s Neil Cavuto Monday morning that Barack Obama is not an extremist but that his policies “dangerous” for America. He also said that the Boston Globe will not disappear and that his recently installed #2, Chase Carey, is by no means his “heir apparent.” “I think Barack Obama would describe himself as a pragmatic leftist but he’s not an extremist,” Murdoch said. “I think he sees himself as a president for change and that involves bigger government. He’s made no secret of that. I think that’s dangerous.” — Huffington Post

Therese Rein’s workout shots in Woman’s Day irk Kevin Rudd. Prime Minister Kevin Rudd is upset about a magazine photo spread of his wife, Therese Rein, taken without her permission during a private gym session. The photos, which show Ms Rein in gym gear doing exercises with a medicine ball, were taken without her knowledge or permission. A spokeswoman for the Prime Minister released a terse one-line statement last night: “This is entirely a matter for Woman’s Day. Woman’s Day did not contact the Prime Minister’s office beforehand.” news.com.au