Aussie Scientology journos on the hunt. The Church of Scientology has long employed ‘investigative reporters’ to work for their magazine Freedom. And now they’re recruiting in Australia, with particular reference to South Australia.


Funnily enough, Independent Senator Nick Xenophon — who has on several occasions vocally attacked the church — hails from SA. Coincidence? You can read some of the allegations made by Xenophon at the Huffington Post.

Perhaps they’re going to launch a full scale ‘investigative report’ to dispel the defamatory claims. It won’t be the first time. In Florida last year, Freedom wrote several stories on the St Petersburg Times, a paper that had previously run features undermining the church. After the Times called the Church “a culture of intimidation and violence”, they hired three well-known reporters — one of them a Pulitzer winner — to “deal with the allegations”.

The Washington Post, Boston’s WBGHBeat the Press’ and Poynter have all questioned the integrity of journalists being paid to report for the much scrutinised institution. It seems that you can put a price on Freedom. — Crikey intern Jasmin Pfefferkorn

Hunting the men with 7Mate.The Seven Network has today announced the launch of 7Mate on September 25. 7Mate will be a male-skewing digital multi-channel that will replace the 7HD service. From the media release issued this morning, the content is largely general entertainment. The line-up seems reminiscent of the digital channel Dave in the UK, crossed with the US cable network Spike. Shows will include:

Family Guy, American Dad, Parks and Recreation, Last Comic Standing, 3O Rock, How I Met Your Mother, That 70’S Show, Scrubs,  Crank Yankers, Caprica, Warehouse 13, Stargate Atlantis, Jersey Shore, Pawn Stars, Punk’d, Gene Simmons Family Jewels, Monster Garage, Fifth Gear, The Universe, Life After People, The Boneyard, AX Men, Jacked: Auto Theft Taskforce, Mega Movers, Mega Structures, Air Crash Investigations and Shockwave.”

Examining the list, one can only wonder what Seven will now screen in their 11pm timeslots. It’s also surprising that the show Hung hasn’t been announced to air on the channel. A show examining modern day notions of manhood seem like a natural fit for the channel.

The notion of a male-focused channel will be desirable to advertisers as males 18-35 are generally considered to be a difficult audience to target. What will be interesting is to see whether the audience will in fact be predominantly male. The content certainly seems blokey, but only just enough so as not to exclude the female viewership.

The announcement of the channel today was unexpected. It was widely accepted that we’d be waiting until 2011 for the launch of the new channels. What wasn’t unexpected was that the channel would skew male. In October last year there had been considerable talk of Seven registering the Mate trademark.

Now, we wait to see what Ten, Nine and SBS offer for their third channel offerings — lifestyle, general entertainment and movies seem likely. 7Mate: awkward name, but a solid fit for Seven. — Dan Barrett from White Noise, where this first appeared.

A race to enter

“When the Seven Network announced applications were open for The Amazing Race Australia, longtime fans of the show went delious in online forums and Twitter. But now the enthusiasm has been dampened by a casting website change that has seen the minimum age of 18 years lifted to 21 years.” — TV Tonight

Kanye, meet Julia

“I’m sure you read The New Yorker. In which case you may have found the recent mash-ups of Kanye’s tweets with New Yorker cartoons rather amusing. Me too! Hey, do you mind if we totally rip off that concept ourselves today and find out if Kanye’s tweets also work humorously when paired with images from the 2010 federal election campaign? No? Why, thank you! Here we go!” — The Vine

Keep your secrets safe John S. Surname

“The chief executive of Google has a novel suggestion for those wishing to preserve their online privacy: Change your name.” — The Hindu Times

Who has emotional connections with their cereal?

“Conversation is about failure in the system. I’ve heard marketers talk about brand experience and brand aspiration and I never really bought any of it because I never felt the same way. I don’t have an emotional connection to a brand and most people I meet don’t, either. Hell, apart from groceries, most of my purchases, even toothpaste, are once a quarter. No emotional connection can survive that sort of neglect.” — Mumbrella

Frankie-ly, this is how you make a magazine

“Frankie has just been crowned the Audit Bureau of Circulation’s fastest grower for the second year in a row, recording a 43.20% increase in circulation for the Jan-June period of 2010. To shed some light on their astronomical growth, Pedestrian asked Frankie Editor-in-Chief Jo Walker to share the secrets to running a successful magazine.” — Pedestrian

Profit expectations not met, and APN shares fall

“APN [News and Media] shares closed 9 per cent lower after the trans-Tasman newspaper, radio and outdoor advertising company posted net profit of $40 million for the six months to June.” —The Australian

Start sharpening your knives

“Melbourne is the new front line in the ratings war to topple MasterChef. Channel 7 will film its new cooking show Iron Chef in Australia’s foodie capital, featuring restaurateurs Neil Perry, Guy Grossi and Guillaume Brahimi.” — Herald Sun

How to explain Newser

“It’s often a b-tch to explain new media. None of this stuff makes much sense if you don’t use it—and if you resist it. It’s as irritating as it is opaque. Technology in the way it reduces and simplifies is, let’s face it, vulgar.” — Newser

Google’s latest target: TV

“Google revolutionized the way people access information. Now it wants to transform how people get entertainment. The search giant is touting an ambitious new technology, called Google TV, that would marry the Internet with traditional television, enabling viewers to watch TV shows and movies unshackled from the broadcast networks or cable channels on which they air.” — LA Times