Seven West Media to make staff cuts. Staff at Seven West Media in Perth have been given until Tuesday to submit an expression of interest in voluntary redundancy, as part of cuts announced late last year. Editorial staff were told yesterday via email there was not a target number of people to leave the newsroom. “It will be looked at in the context of the whole business and will depend on operational requirement,” the email said.

In November, CEO Tim Worner said the company would cut $55 million in costs across the country by the end of the financial year. Fairfax Media reported yesterday that Seven West Media’s WA boss John Driscoll had said he’d worked “tirelessly” to reduce costs, but as a last resort, there would need to be redundancies.

In the midst of the cost-cutting, Seven has also announced it’s bought The Simpsons and MASH in a deal with Fox. — with Glenn Dyer

Waterstreet: ‘Why should I be assumed to be a perpetrator?’ Charles Waterstreet has responded to criticism of the ABC’s decision to include him on the panel of its #metoo special edition of Q&A. He told Fairfax yesterday that he’d formally accepted the invitation to appear (although the ABC has not publicly confirmed the panel yet): “Why should I be assumed to be a perpetrator? I look forward to speaking on my own behalf.”

New Matilda published a number of stories last year alleging sexual harassment by Waterstreet, claims that he has denied. The ABC yesterday said in a statement the panel on the February 15 program would “represent a variety of perspectives and experiences, exposing Australian citizens to a range of views and ideas they may oppose, as well as those they support.” 

An unexceptable typo.

Fin Times story brings Presidents Club down. The Presidents Club has decided to close after a Financial Times report detailing alleged sexual harassment and groping of women at a men-only fundraising dinner it organised. The group said late on Wednesday that “the trustees have decided that the Presidents Club will not host any further fundraising events”. Remaining funds held by the trust will be distributed to children’s charities and it will then be closed.

The club faced a rush of criticism after the FT reported yesterday on an event the trust held last week, in which hostesses hired as staff said they faced harassment, including repeated groping by the male attendees. Great Ormond Street Hospital said earlier it would return previous donations from the trust, with the famed children’s hospital citing the “wholly unacceptable nature of the event”. David Meller, who was the joint head of the club, resigned from his role as a non-executive board member at the Department for Education as a result of the scandal. Meanwhile, the UK charity watchdog has opened an urgent investigation into the allegations of widespread sexual harassment. — Glenn Dyer

Censored student journos launch rival paper. Enterprising high schoolers in Salt Lake City launched their own newspaper earlier this week after school administrators removed a story they’d put on the school newspaper’s website. The student journalists at Herriman High School had written about a teacher’s sacking, which was later removed and the students’ editing privileges stripped. In response, the reporters set up their own news website to publish the yarn themselves.

CBS commissions Murphy Brown revival. Will it work? Deadline reports CBS has ordered 13 episodes of a remake of the classic media sitcom, Murphy Brown. Creator Diane English and star Candice Bergen will be back for the remake. The series will air in the US fall, 30 years after it the original aired in 1988 — it lasted until 1998, and I think Murph got her townhouse painted, but I can’t be sure. Eldin did return in the final episode after Murph crossed over briefly and interviewed GOD.

Bergen will again play the main role of Murphy Brown, famous investigative journalist and TV anchor at the FYI network. But the media landscape has changed — more cable news, social media, fake news and a very different political and cultural climate. Deadline says CBS is talking to other original cast members to return. Warner TV Brothers is producing again. — Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer’s TV Ratings. Tennis won, Federer was fab, likewise Hyeon Chung and Simona Halep as was Angelique Kerber. Seven won, easily, again. A great long weekend awaits. Oh, and there are two ODIs involving England and some country west of NZ. Ten’s Big bash also did well last night.

Again no national figures, and no figures to give us national figures for breakfast and mornings, so I can’t tell you how well Seven’s tennis went, as well as the Seven and Nine News or Ten’s Big Bash, or how well Seven’s Sunrise seems to be doing against Today. — Read the rest on the Crikey website.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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