From the Crikey grapevine, the latest tips and rumours …

New marketing boss at ABC. At a sensitive time for Aunty, boss Mark Scott is shaking up the ABC’s marketing. He’s lured top-end-of-town marketeer Leisa Bacon to the broadcaster as “audience and marketing director”, Crikey has learned, where she’ll join the executive ranks to oversee the function across all departments from March 3. Bacon was most recently at Arnott’s, but has worked at Coca-Cola, Village Roadshow and the Queensland Performing Arts Centre.

As one ABC mole whispered: “Lots of people asking how we can do this at such a time. Given she was previously at Arnott’s and Coke she wouldn’t come cheap.” But Scott says it’s all about efficiency. In a memo to staff he noted:

“… a centralised approach ensures we use our marketing resources as efficiently as possible to meet increasing challenges in increasing audience engagement, reach and share in a fragmented media market.”

Culture wars inside PM&C? According to one staffer at the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the “bracing winds of the new political paradigm” were a-blowin’ when they were treated to a speech by Josephine Cashman, a member of the new Indigenous Advisory Council, on the theme of “why the apology, reconciliation, healing and recognition matter” yesterday. Our mole inside Centraplaza HQ in Canberra reckoned the speech was “no doubt an invigorating experience for many bloodless bureaucrats”:

“Depending on your views, Cashman makes either spurious or valid points. But the APS is supposed to be above the slack mudslinging that its masters indulge in by trade, nor should they be directly subjected to them. Such views as Cashman’s are readily accessible elsewhere and she’s entitled to them — but it isn’t the kind of thing expected for an event commemorating the anniversary of the apology and the aspirations of reconciliation. Better vet the next keynote speech.”

We spoke to Cashman this morning — she relished the chance to speak to the bureaucrats, and there’s no doubt she’s passionate about the cause. Crikey readers can make up their own minds — the full address is published at The Stringer.

More Christianity, please. The Australian Christian Lobby (“A Voice for Values”) has devised a survey of five questions regarding Christopher Pyne’s proposed national curriculum review. The questions (or rather, statements, with the choices ranging from “strongly agree” to “strongly disagree”) seem rather leading to us, including: “It is important that the National Curriculum provide students with an understanding of Christianity and the Bible”; “Understanding Christianity is vital for students in gaining an understanding of modern Australia and Western Civilisation”; and “The National Curriculum does not pay close enough attention to Christianity and its contribution to our nation’s history”.

Upon reflection, we’re pretty sure the five statements are actually the same statement, phrased five different ways …

Murdoch’s here again … On Monday we brought you the distressing news that the Murdoch Here Tumblr (a special favourite of Ms Tips’) had been locked and required a password. So there were sighs of relief all round yesterday when we learnt the Tumblr was only temporarily down to get a facelift. Murdoch’s chief of staff Natalie Ravitz confirmed that Murdoch Here is back in business, much to Ms Tips’ delight …

… and is feeling quite himself. And from that very same Tumblr account, we learn that Rupert’s taken BuzzFeed‘s “Which Billionaire Tycoon Are You?” quiz and luckily came up as Rupert Murdoch:


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Peter Fray

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