Channel Seven Brisbane responds:

Rob Raschke, Director of News, Seven Brisbane, writes: Re. “Media briefs: retelling the news … Murdoch seeks digital media allies … Pakistan bans Facebook …” (yesterday, item 19). Yesterday, Crikey published:

Retelling the news: Seven does a Nine. Last Thursday we reported that Nine News’ story about asylum seekers living in a suburban Brisbane hotel was, well, not actually news. Keen not to get left behind in the old news stakes, Seven News in Brisbane ran a piece this Tuesday that was about four years out of date.

According to Seven, a “new supervised housing estate” in western Brisbane will soon play home to 30 sex offenders who have done prison time but “can’t be trusted”. The new housing apparently comes “in response to community protests” that had already driven convicted sex offender Dennis Ferguson out of six Queensland communities.

Unfortunately for Seven, the housing mentioned in its story has not only been built already, it has been housing convicted sex offenders for four years. Ross McSwain, a senior official with Queensland Corrective Services told Crikey: “The housing at the reserve has been used to accommodate offenders who are under Dangerous Prisoner and S-x Offender supervision orders since September 2006.” — Crikey intern Matt de Neef

Crikey, Seven News Brisbane did not say the facility was a “new supervised housing estate”.

That’s a direct quote from AAP copy, published online almost two hours after the story went to air on Seven News at 6pm on May 18.

We have been reporting on the compound at Wacol since it was created in 2006. We know it has been housing convicted sex offenders for four years.

Monday night’s story was about a significant expansion of the compound.

When it began operating in 2006 there were three offenders living there, with room for only one more.

Now there is room for 27 convicted sex offenders, a fact that was not reported until Erin Edwards’ story went to air this week. It could be expanded to take 30 former inmates under plans to move a tenth house to the compound. Again, this had not been reported until Erin Edwards’ report went to air on Monday night.

The story was in response to a debate about where to re-house paedophiles under supervision orders. Their number has grown from 20 to 90 since 2006.

Our initial story and follow-up outlined all of this.

Your report also stated it was “in response to community protests” that had already driven convicted sex offender Dennis Ferguson out of six Queensland communities.’

We did not report this. We reported the expansion was aimed at stopping ‘the hounding of sex offenders from town to town.”

Other media outlets who followed our story, wrongly reported that a new facility would be built.

Rundle in cans … errr … Cannes:

Simon Wilkins writes: Re. “Rundle in Cannes: come for the films, stay for the parties” (yesterday, item 4). Before yesterday’s instalment I did not realise Guy Rundle was available in cans (I had been drinking straight from the bottle). But on trying this new, new and improved Rundle, I realised that this is exactly what I didn’t realise I needed.

Accordingly, please find attached my cheque for a six-pack of Rundle (mildly bitter). I am sure your marketing department have seen the light and now include a free “Rundle at the Nikki skincare tent” photo on a t-shirt with said six-pack (on a serious note, I would actually pay non-monopoly money for that…solid gold!).

Although I do not consider myself addicted to Rundle (I can stop any time), I am also looking forward to new flavours of Rundle in the future. I am sure that the following would hit the spot with many of your regulars: Zeitgeist (mid-strength), Post-modern populism (for the ladies) and perhaps Sardonique (with a twist of irony).

Otherwise, keep up the good work.

Andrew Elder writes: So: Guy Rundle’s in Cannes, where nothing is happening — but in Bangkok, where plenty is happening, you’ve got a couple of cliché bunnies. Please use the weekend productively and swap them over.

The Age‘s archives:

Brad Hill writes: Re. “Time for The Age to come clean on the fate of archives: Gawenda” (yesterday, item 15). Back in the early to mid 1980’s there was a big effort put into the archives at The Age — a long standing employee of retirement age (whose name escapes me — Keith somebody — apparently his daughter married Christopher Skase) was put on as a “historian” and did a sterling job setting up a museum on the second floor of the Age building.

Amongst other things one of the last hot metal linotype machines was saved from the scrap yard. Sad to hear that all that effort may have ended up in a skip.

Resource Super Profit Tax:

Keith Perkins writes: Re. “RSPT debate: Wayne Swan’s day of reckoning” (yesterday, item 9). The suggested proposal that the government should rescind all non work-commenced mining leases, within a reasonable time of them being granted, would certainly put a stop to the miners blackmailing threats not to commence working them until the government has a change of intent regarding its 40% tax.

Rudd should call their bluff.  Which mining company would be game enough to leave ore and minerals in the ground at a time when prices are spiralling, especially with a risk of losing them all-together.

Video games:

Gabe McGrath, of videogame blog JustOneMoreGame writes: Re. “Media briefs: retelling the news … Murdoch seeks digital media allies … Pakistan bans Facebook …” (yesterday, item 19).  I was amused to read in Crikey a story about Channel Seven Brisbane presenting “old” news as “new”.

I was even further amused, when I saw within the same Briefs section Crikey linking to a videogame story (“Cash for comment in video games reviews”) that did the rounds a full six(6) weeks ago!

Mind you, today was an interesting day for videogames on Crikey.

Bernard Keane reporting on Xbox Live?  What’s next, Guy Rundle writing about Ayn Rand’s influence on the plot of Bioshock?

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Peter Fray
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