Brought to you by Coles? There’s a new Coles. In Bendigo. Have you heard? You’d have to be living under a rock to have missed it, thanks to the efforts of the Bendigo Advertiser. It’s given top billing on its website this morning to a live-blog of the opening of a Coles in Lansell Plaza Shopping Centre. Here are some of the most recent updates:
Update 9am: Coles is open! People are streaming in! Staff welcoming customers.
Update 8.59am: Coles about to open the doors.
Update 8.57am: Two longstanding team members cut the ribbon.
Get Crikey FREE to your inbox every weekday morning with the Crikey Worm.
Update 8.56am: Kangaroo Flat PS choir sings national anthem.
There are things happening in Bendigo today more significant than this — we’re sure of it. And in case readers were wondering why it was that a live-blog of a Coles opening of all things should be the top story, here’s the advertising viewers were greeted with when opening the website…
There’s no mention of the live-blog being sponsored content of any type for Coles, so we assume it’s bona fida content. Still, it’s hardly a good look, especially when today’s front page also drove the Coles opening home… — Myriam Robin
This week in Rupert. On Thursday, Scotland will vote on whether to leave the United Kingdom. The issue’s fascinated many, not least Rupert Murdoch, who’s there this week. Some have written of old Rupe as being against the referendum (most of his UK papers certainly are). But his true opinion is perhaps more nuanced, as his Twitter account reveals. “Unprecedented 97% registered. Everywhere alive with debate. Democracy truly at work. Both sides predicting victory,” he wrote on Sunday. Yesterday, he added that Scotland was ready “emotionally and politically” for independence, but he wasn’t sure about its economy. “[Scottish National Party] not talking about independence, but about more welfarism, expensive greenery etc,” he added. He’s also worried about Scotland swapping British rule for European Union rule, as he tweeted earlier this week.
There’s also lots of happy snaps of Murdoch around Scotland on his Tumblr account. — Myriam Robin
ABC wrecks Ford exclusive, but the Oz gets it from the horse’s mouth. 2DayFM’s showbiz commentator Peter Ford was the first to reveal that David and Margaret, of At The Movies, were retiring yesterday. But his tweeted exclusive was quickly squashed by the ABC itself, which as Crikey hit its deadline put out a statement confirming the rumour. Bad luck Ford.
Stratton writes a regular film criticism column for The Australian, and today he reveals a bit more about the decision. He stresses it was made entirely by the two hosts, and reminisces on the show’s early days, as well as why the duo made the move from SBS to the ABC in 2003.
“[A] new management team installed at SBS displayed little interest in the culture of international cinema we had built up over the years. With both Margaret and myself alienated and unhappy, it was a no-brainer when Margaret received an invitation from Sandra Levy, then director of television at the ABC, to discuss a move to the national broadcaster.
Negotiations were held in secret, but in the end the move was seamless: the final edition of The Movie Show with Margaret and David went to air on SBS in May 2004, and the first At the Movies was broadcast on July 1 on the ABC.”
Tea with Peppa. This picture from ABC MD Mark Scott’s Instagram profile presented without comment:
Achtung! Job losses ahead. The weakness in newspapers with job losses following lower sales and ad revenues has forced Germany’s most respected newspaper, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (also known as the FAZ), to cut 200 jobs, including 40 journalists, or 10% of its 400 strong newsroom. Financial Times and other media reported this morning that the job cuts would be made through natural attrition, early retirement and outsourcing. Compulsory retrenchments were ruled out by management in an announcement overnight.
The paper is Germany’s leading conservative publication (it famously didn’t publish a photo on page one until 2007). Financial Times said that the FAZ’s losses almost doubled from 4.3 million euros in 2012 to 8.2 million last year. Its circulation has been falling sharply with Monday-to-Saturday paid circulation dropping 8%, from around 334,000 in the second quarter last year to around 307,000 in the same period this year. A decade ago it was selling 400,000 copies a day. The cuts are aimed at reducing costs by 20 million euros or US$26 million over the next three years.
Financial Times pointed out that falling sales are not confined to the FAZ:
“Similarly, the paid circulation of the Sueddeutsche Zeitung, its liberal rival among the German broadsheet press, declined 5 per cent from around 418,000 to 397,000, including 274,000 subscriptions.”
The German media industry has already undergone a shake-up, with the Financial Times Deutschland and the news agency DAPD both closing in 2012 during the euro crisis. — Glenn Dyer
Video of the day. A goodbye…