Samantha Maiden goes radio silent. Red Symons heads to an old rival to air some dirty laundry. Trump legally can’t block Twitter trolls, and other media tidbits of the day.
Where’s Samantha Maiden? The Australian Financial Review’s Joe Aston reports that Sky News’ Samantha Maiden has been suspended from duties while lawyers investigate claims against her from colleagues in the news channel’s Parliament House office. Sky is not commenting (“We do not comment on internal staff matters”), and Maiden has been uncharacteristically quiet on Twitter since the royal wedding on Saturday evening.
Maiden’s been with Sky since early last year, and has previously worked as the News Corp Sunday newspaper group political editor, and for The Australian. She lost her licence in mid-2016 for drink driving and not obeying police directions.
Red Symons on ABC sacking. Former ABC Melbourne radio presenter Red Symons has taken to former rival 3AW to talk about being dumped by the public broadcaster last year. Symons was cut after 15 years hosting breakfast, and told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell yesterday that he didn’t listen to his former station anymore. He said he hadn’t had a clear answer on why he’d been taken off air, but thought it had something to do with cost-cutting and a “rubber stamp” on the breakfast programs around the country to have a man and a woman presenting together.
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HuffPost Australia’s phantom staff. When HuffPost ended its joint venture with Fairfax last year, most of its 30 staff were packed up and out the door, including editor-in-chief Tory Maguire, editor Chris Paine and CEO JJ Eastwood. But Mumbrella reports today that the global site is still maintaining that it has an “Australian edition”, despite only having one staffer filing for the US overnight:
A spokesperson for HuffPost would not directly respond to Mumbrella’s question, which asked how the Australian team was operating given the final two editors had left the business and it had ripped out 30 jobs last year, despite claims of a “stand-alone Australian edition” … When Mumbrella asked how many staff members were in the editorial team, the spokesperson could not provide a number.
Trump Twitter blocks ‘unconsitutional’. A New York court has ruled US President Donald Trump cannot block followers on Twitter because it violates their first amendment rights to participate in a public forum. Seven plaintiffs who’d been blocked by Trump took the matter on, and the district court ruled that the account was “a presidential account as opposed to a personal account and, more importantly, uses the account to take actions that can be taken only by the president as president”.
Glenn Dyer’s TV Ratings. Weak night. A rare three way tie in the top ten was probably the highlight: A Current Affair, House Rules and MasterChef all attracted 1.11 million viewers, finishing a joint 6th nationally. That this was interesting tells you about the rest of the night. Seven won total people, Nine won the main channels, Ten again did well in the demos, as did Seven. Gruen on the ABC around 9pm fell to 910,000 from 1.07 million the previous week. Breakfast was weak too — in the core metro markets Sunrise averaged 262,000; Today on Nine, 228,000. In the regions Sunrise was also stronger — 202,000 against Today’s 123,000.
In fact Seven again dominated the regions last night. Seven’s 6pm News was tops with 580,000, followed by Seven News/Today Tonight with 479,000, then Home and Away with 440,000, House Rules with 436,000, and The Chase Australia with 388,000 viewers.