What would Jesus do (about tax)? The Easter holiday period delivered some confusing attempts to shoehorn the festival into news coverage. In The Sydney Morning Herald, Ross Gittins’ comment piece in yesterday’s edition was helpfully headlined “What would Jesus do about tax and government spending?”.

Over at the Australian Financial Review, the long weekend edition spruiked Catholic Archbishop of Sydney Anthony Fisher’s op-ed about trust by pulling out a reference to Jesus as responsible for the first banking royal commission.

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And, of course, the temptation to compare Australian cricket captain Steve Smith with Jesus Christ himself was too much for former Catholic seminarian (and Nine’s political editor) Chris Uhlmann, and 2GB shock jock Alan Jones.

Nine locked out of Commonwealth Games. Nine’s media accreditation for the Commonwealth Games has been suspended after it broadcast behind-the-scenes footage of opening ceremony preparations in Sunday night’s news bulletin. 

Games organising committee chair Peter Beattie told the Gold Coast Bulletin the contravention of accreditation conditions was a “breach of trust”. “It’s a really important experience for the people who come here, we want this to be a real moment for Queensland, a real moment for the Gold Coast and we don’t want it out there before the night.”

A Nine spokesman said the footage was broadcast in error. “We are in discussions with the Commonwealth Games authorities to restore our accreditation and hope to have the situation resolved as soon as possible,” he said.

Fake news promos. American TV network Sinclair Broadcasting Group has come under fire for a promotion it had its anchors read about bias in news and fake news being “extremely dangerous to our democracy”. The network, which owns more than 170 TV stations in the US, has come under repeated criticism for pushing a pro-Trump agenda, with this latest promo echoing some of his language about the mainstream media. Sinclair has rejected this claim, saying it was an initiative focussed on “fair and objective reporting”.

The story has gathered pace over the weekend after Deadspin posted a video compilation of news anchors reading the promo from the same script.

Front page of the day.

Glenn Dyer’s TV Ratings. Nine won Sunday night from Seven, the ABC and then a weak Ten. Last night Seven and Nine almost tied in total people (Seven was 0.1% ahead), but Nine easily won the main channels. Ten was third ahead of the ABC which didn’t have its usual Monday line up of Four Corners, Australian Story, Media Watch and Q&ACaught Out, a 40 minute mini-doco on the cricket ball tampering story filled in for 7.30Bachelor in Paradise on Ten averaged 877,000 last night and failed to beat Caught Out which got 953,000 and deserved more. Seven’s burial of Australian Spartan was completed last night (771,000), while Young Sheldon (1.417 million nationally) was down 161,000 from its debut last week, and the fresh episode of The Big Bang Theory (1.20 million) was down 277,000 from a week ago.

Caught Out was the 10th most watched program nationally last night. It was a story that Nine could have done easily, if it had the guts to. But of course Nine is conflicted by its string of cricket commentator dinosaurs, many of whom have contributed to the culture and other problems of Australian cricket over the years. 

In the regions Seven News was on top with 623,000 (it was boosted by the thrilling late finishing Geelong/Hawthorn AFL game in AFL markets, which the Hawks won by a point). Then came Seven News/TT with 553,000, Young Sheldon was third with 484,000, then Home and Away on 468,000 and The Big Bang Theory was fifth with 418,000. — Read the rest on the Crikey website.

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