ABC News 24 faces violent test. Rumblings abound after ABC News 24 broadcast live continuous footage of the deadly tourist bus siege in Manila last night. Twitter users were quick to take aim at the ABC for failing to cut away from the feed, especially when it appeared that shots were being fired at the hostages.

One Twitter user said ABC News 24 crossed the line by broadcasting the footage and they’d be complaining to the station that it breached the Australian Journalism Association code of ethics. “Good journalism knows the line,” wrote @Asher_Wolf. “ABC News 24 trampled on it while photographing gore.” Another user defended the broadcast, saying “people who don’t like seeing a dead body should’ve changed station”.

The horrifying siege, in which eight hostages were murdered by a gunman who then turned the weapon on himself, was beamed live around the world and also ran live in Australia on CNN and Sky News. On one occasion it appeared as though a body was being hung out the door of the bus, causing the ABC to cut away to anchor Scott Bevan, who appeared quite shaken by the proceedings.

The ABC’s code of practice sets out that, when depicting violence, the network must take “particular care” in presenting violence and any depiction “should be preceded by a warning.” –Tom Cowie

Times ‘scoop’ implicates itself. Sometimes the Murdoch press gets itself into terrible trouble with its exclusives, like the one from the London Sunday Times over the weekend revealing former British PM Tony Blair had set up a bank for the mega rich. The scoop made it onto the website of The Australian on Sunday:

TONY Blair has formed his own finance boutique in London to offer investment services to global funds and the super-rich.

His Mayfair-based company has recruited senior financiers and has been authorised by the Financial Services Authority. It will effectively be a fledgling investment bank.

News of the former British prime minister’s diversification into finance will help to explain how he can afford to give away the estimated 5 million pounds proceeds of his memoirs, A Journey, to the Royal British Legion. His predecessors in Downing Street have relied on their books to provide for their retirement.

Since leaving office in 2007, Blair has amassed a fortune estimated to be in excess of 20 million pounds. He has combined his role as a roving statesman with charitable work and paid advisory roles.

As the Financial Times Alphaville blog site said overnight:

If you register with Britain’s Financial Services Authority, you must be in the process of setting up an investment bank or something, right? And if you are doing that, then it must be for doing dodgy deals for squillionaires, who are probably foreigners as well.

That, surely, is the takeaway from the Sunday Times’ “exclusive” this weekend, noting that the FSA registration of a vehicle linked to Tony Blair Associates offered the former British prime minister the chance to offer investment services to institutions and individuals.

No matter that Blair’s officials had simply registered with the FSA as a precautionary measure in case any of the geopolitical advice Blair already dishes out to his consultancy clients is used by them for investment purposes.

But in all things News Corp and Murdoch, don’t depend on the man’s loyal employees to disclose any more than necessary, especially where there’s a story with an objective (embarrassing Blair). So Alphaville went and checked the authorisations register and found (shock, horror) that, yes, News International, Murdoch’s UK newspaper holding company, has two authorisations from Britain’s financial regulator, one the same as Blair. As the blog wrote:

In fact, according to documents seen on the internet by FT Alphaville, we can reveal that News International is already acting as an “introducer” (which sounds really shady if you say it right) and also operating a “credit union” (which just sounds left wing).

So News International has followed the letter of UK law and obtained an authorisation as Blair did, but you wouldn’t want a fact like that getting in the way of a story for the Sunday Times, or The Australian‘s website (where, incidentally, you could have read a story for free that would have cost you to access it behind the News paywall around The Times and The Sunday Times). — Glenn Dyer

Ready, steady, quit. Housewives and uni students lament: Peter Everett is hanging up his whisk as host of Channel Ten’s daytime favourite Ready Steady CookCrikey was tipped off about the news this morning, which a network spokesperson later confirmed. They insist the decision was mutual — both parties decided not to renew his contract: “Peter Everett has completed his fifth and final season as host of Ready Steady Cook and we wish him well.”

Everett’s representative could not be reached for comment, though we can only imagine his disappointment. After all, as his biography states (still on the Ready Steady Cook website): “Peter loves food and he loves an audience, which makes hosting Ready Steady Cook in front of a live audience the dream job for this fun-loving and popular personality.” Ten says a replacement will be announced “in the coming months”, with the search on for another “charismatic food enthusiast”. As charismatic as Pete? Good luck, we say. — Jason Whittaker

Kurtz: the herd mentality of the press

“When the New York Times published a story last December about plans for a Muslim prayer space near the World Trade Center site, there was little reaction.” — Washington Post

Philly makes bloggers pay

“The city of Philadelphia is demanding money from bloggers who were honest enough to report the meagerest — $11, $50 — of revenue from ads or donations.” — ReadWriteWeb

Tick tock for the Washington Times

“Conservative newspaper The Washington Times is perilously close to shutting down … familial strife is at the heart of the possible closure.” — Huffington Post

Insider trading at Disney

“A man charged with selling inside information about finances at the Walt Disney Company pleaded guilty in federal court on Monday to wire fraud charges and conspiracy to commit securities fraud.” — New York Times

Holy BBC

“The Church of England has called on the BBC to appoint a religion editor to act as a ‘trusted guide’ for people with faith as well as those without.” — The Guardian

Risky Russia on the net

“According to a study just released by security company AVG, Internet users in Russia and Turkey have the greatest chance of being attacked by viruses.” — Tech Crunch