cos les moonves

Les Moonves is reportedly on his way out of CBS, The Teacher’s Pet case gets a second look, Alex Jones has been banned from Twitter, plus other media tidbits from the day.

Changes at top for Ten. The Ten Network could be about to get a new boss, with reports that CBS CEO Les Moonves is heading for the exit with a goodbye present estimated at US$200 million to help him on his way. Independent directors on the CBS board have agreed to settle litigation with Shari Redstone, whose family company (National Amusements) controls the broadcast network and linked company Viacom. That means they are no longer backing Moonves in his opposition to the Redstone family exercising its 80% shareholding in CBS, leaving him stranded and on the way out.

His departure will be seen as a way of appeasing Redstone and meeting disquiet after six women accused him of sexual misconduct in a story in The New Yorker last month. Those claims saw the CBS board hire outside lawyers to lead a probe into Moonves and the culture at CBS. The results of that inquiry have not yet appeared in public.

Redstone and CBS fell out in May with the board, led by Moonves, backing litigation to strip the Redstone voting power in CBS. A majority of the independent directors had backed the move against Redstone but this week suddenly switched tack and moved to settle the dispute, isolating Moonves. CBS bought the struggling Ten Network last year. — Glenn Dyer

Take two. The ABC will follow up The Australian’s successful podcast, The Teacher’s Pet, with Monday’s episode of Australian Story. The Oz’s Hedley Thomas investigated the disappearance and presumed murder of Sydney woman Lyn Dawson in the podcast, which has been widely downloaded around the world. And now, Australian Story will take its second look at the case (the first was 15 years ago), with interviews with her family, friends and investigators.

The revolving door. The latest shift in ABC correspondents will include its national Indigenous affairs correspondent Bridget Brennan, who is off to London as a European correspondent.

Alex Jones banned. Twitter has finally banned conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from its platform for “abusive behaviour”. He and his InfoWars website were banned from other platforms including Facebook, Spotify and Pinterest last month for hate speech, but Twitter had refused, saying he hadn’t breached their policies. Jones this week went to hearings on Capitol Hill where Twitter’s Jack Dorsey and Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg were giving evidence, where he accosted and abused CNN’s Oliver Darcy in a hallway.

Glenn Dyer’s TV Ratings. Tigers win, Seven wins, end of story. Back again tonight with the AFL up against the NRL finals on Nine. Nine ran dead last night, Ten finished second thanks to The Bachelor (1.23 million nationally) and GoggleBox (1.06 million). The AFL’s first qualifying final was watched by 1.13 million nationally and a further 420,000 on Foxtel. Everyone knew the AFL game would rate well (874,000 in the metros and 265,000 in the regions), but Ten was the winner last night because it stuck to its guns and viewers stayed with its younger skewing programs. The Bachelor actually had more viewers than the AFL, but over a shorter period of time than the game. Read the rest on the Crikey website.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

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