ACMA to prove royal prank call. After a flood of complaints, the Australian Communications and Media Authority says it will launch its own investigation into the royal prank call by two 2Day FM DJs which grabbed global headlines after a nurse involved committed suicide. ACMA says its “own motion” investigation — launched under discretionary powers in the Broadcasting Services Act —  will focus on “the compliance of the licensee” (a subsidiary of parent Southern Cross Ausereo) with conditions of the Commercial Radio Codes of Practice.

“The ACMA’s formal regulatory relationship is always with the relevant licensee (and not the presenters of any broadcast in question),” ACMA chairman Chris Chapman said in a statement. “The ACMA will be examining whether the licensee has complied with its broadcasting obligations.” The regulator says it will expedite the investigation.

Rivals steal running on ICAC. You would have thought the newish management of The Sydney Morning Herald would have tried to continue leading the pack on the NSW corruption probes before the state’s Independent Commission Against Corruption. After all, two of its top reporters — Kate McClymont and Linton Besser — broke many of the stories (helped in the case of the Cascade Coal story by The Australian Financial Review‘s Angus Grigg), but looking at The SMH‘s coverage so far you get the feeling management has lost the plot.

McClymont is doing one story a day for the paper, and yet rivals such as The Australian and The AFR are running two or three reports. The Fin has sent gun reporter Neil Chenoweth to do a daily commentary column; the paper had a story off page one today and a page of stories and comments on page four. The SMH has McClymont on page two.

The SMH has given more coverage this week to the redevelopment of Darling Harbour than to the biggest government-based corruption scandal for generations. So what’s the game Sean Alymer (SMH editor) and Gary Linnell (his boss)? Some of your staff aren’t impressed about how the paper’s best story is being taken from them by others. — Glenn Dyer

Video of the day. The fiscal cliff is one thing, but having the set fall on you during a live TV interview is quite another ….

Front page of the day. South Korea’s leading daily The Dong-A Ilbo (East Asia Daily) lets the diagrams do most of the talking in explaining the potential threat of another missile launch from neighbour South Korea…

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey