Benaud generous to the least. Former Australian cricket captain and veteran Nine commentator Richie Benaud has died, aged 84. Tributes have come from all corners, paying respect to a man who personified cricket and summer for many Australians. One such tribute has come from London-based sports journalist Jonathan Stevenson, who shared on Twitter what happened when, as a 16-year-old, he asked Benaud for bowling advice. He got a two-page letter in response:

“Dear Jonathon,

Thank you for your letter about spin bowling and I have attached a sheet for left-handers. Your letter was timely because it was the first from a left-hander and it reminded me that there is a difference in coaching and not just in the fact that one youngster might bowl with the right hand and another with the left. The ball, although coming out of the hand in the same manner and going in the same direction towards the batsman, in fact spins differently for the two types of bowler.

I hope you enjoy your cricket and your bowling. Yes, the left left-arm over-the-wrist bowler who spins the ball in to the right-hander from outside off-stump is said to have bowled a ‘chinaman.’ the same bowler who spins away from the right-hander has bowled a wrong’un.

Best wishes,

Yours sincerely
Richie Benaud”

Another sheet featured extensive tips and tricks for left-handers. — Myriam Robin

Free content gains prominence at Fairfax NZ. Fairfax New Zealand has unveiled plans to prioritise reader-generated freely produced content on its major Kiwi websites.

In an extensive interview with the website of Australian newspaper industry body The Newspaper Works, Fairfax New Zealand group executive editor Sinead Boucher said readers would be invited to contribute first-person accounts of their own lives and experiences, to be featured alongside professionally produced content. Reader submissions will be edited by professional editors and journalists, but those who submit them will not be paid.

“We will work to highlight that two-way relationship at the beginning of all our discussions. It will not be just a team working on Stuff Nation, but all newsrooms thinking about how the readers can get involved,” Boucher told The Newspaper Works. The website reported newsrooms will set “assignments” for readers on newsworthy topics, which will be verified and edited by Fairfax journalists. Edits will be discussed with contributors before publication.

“It’s not an attempt to get free content or do away with journalists,” Boucher said. “It’s about our readers becoming part of the site.”

The piece outlines how first-person accounts from readers had been some of the most popular content on Fairfax’s Stuff.co.nz. Some pieces even reach Australia. One, a personal account of the father of a daughter with special needs, was picked up by The Sydney Morning Herald, running prominently on its website. — Myriam Robin

Ads on your ABC. Viewers of the ABC’s iView platform will soon be linked to the purchase page of programs they’re watching on platforms like iTunes, Google Play and the ABC Shop.

In its announcement this morning, the ABC stressed that the feature had been requested by viewers, with nine out of 10 reportedly finding it a “positive service”. Content aired on the ABC is generally free to view for two weeks, but removed after that. In the Lewis Review into the efficiency of the public broadcasters, the ABC received the suggestion that it charge viewers for digital content after this period. The organisation appears to be moving down such a path.

ABC’s Director of Commercial Robert Patterson said: “For a number of years, ABC Commercial has made an extensive catalogue of content available to our audience through various third party platforms. We are excited to launch iView Links to Buy as it enhances the user’s experience; creating a logical and straightforward facility that enables audiences to more easily find and acquire the content they love.” –– Myriam Robin

Peter Fray

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