Tips and rumours

Nov 19, 2012

Tips and rumours

A real estate media stoush ... The boss who killed Christmas ... 3AW stand in gets punk'd

From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours … REIV worried about Catalano's new venture. Last week down in Geelong the latest title from Anthony Catalano's Metro Media Publishing group, The Weekly Review Greater Geelong, launched, putting the fear of god in to advertising executives at News Limited's Geelong Advertiser. In an intriguing move, The Real Estate Institute of Victoria sent out a missive to members warning them of the "free" shareholder offer being spruiked by MMP:

One of the biggest concerns is that REIV members will be supporting, which uses the same techology and content as, and "the value of advertising the same properties on two search engines that feature the exact same listings is not apparent to us". Why does that matter? Well, because and are majority owned by REIV and its members. So, unsurprisingly, they would prefer if their members  supported that rather than helping build Catalano's empire. Christmas party shenanigans. Ho, ho, ho the company Christmas party tips are continuing to trickle in and this anonymous employee (it sounds like a media company from the "bad year of budget cuts, redundancies and a hiring freeze for new staff", but let's face it, a lot of businesses have had a rough year) is feeling little holiday spirit. As this little Christmas elf explains:
"Our company Christmas party will be abysmal. Following a bad year of budget cuts, redundancies and a hiring freeze for new staff we are being rewarded for our loyalty with the following constraints:
  • Maximum of three hours
  • No alcohol
  • Anyone taking more than three hours must obtain prior permission from management to take it as Annual Leave.
  • Anyone consuming alcohol must have prior approved Annual Leave for the period of the party.
"The party is paid for by staff and is subsidised by the Social Club (staff members who spend many hours throughout the year raising funds through raffles, BBQs etc) -- no company funds or management contribution. Merry Christmas! But at least our expectations were managed by similar rules enforced for Melbourne Cup festivities -- 15 minutes max, no alcohol (the social club served juice), no one is to leave the office. Good times!"
At least the bosses can look forward to coal on Christmas day. How's your employer celebrating Christmas -- free martinis and Christmas hampers for all or just a pat on the back and a cup of cordial? Spill your Christmas goss to us via our anonymous online form or by emailing us. Media clangers. We've been enjoying sifting through the entries for the media clangers -- inspired by a Gippsland radio station recently claiming (falsely) that an ex-MP had died. One clanger watcher pointed us to journo Nick McCallum -- a temporary stand in for Neil Mitchell -- who broadcast an interview with a man claiming to have escaped from prison, only to later realise it was all a hoax. As The Age reported at the time:
"A delivery man who claimed he broke out of Pentridge Prison with Ronald Ryan, arguing Ryan was wrongly hanged for the murder of a prison guard as they fled, has been exposed as a fraud. "Radio journalist Nick McCallum yesterday apologised to 3AW listeners, admitting that he had been duped in an interview in which the man claimed he was Peter John Walker, who escaped from Pentridge with Ryan in 1965."
Oops. Another Crikey reader remembered the Queen Mother story well (that's when a radio announcer said she had died, when she hadn't) but was a little hazy on the details:
"The Queen Mother story is true. When I freelanced at the BBC as an editor about ten years ago the story I was told was that an Aussie editor dialled up a rehearsal for the Queen Mum's death, called his mother in Australia, who then called a radio station, and off it went. I was told the editor's name at the time but it was too long ago to remember."
*Do you know more? Send your tips to [email protected] or use our guaranteed anonymous form.

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