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    Roundup: Bruce McWilliam, Blow to New Zealand media, The profitability of sports media

    Bruce McWilliam

    ‘Mate, you’re a piece of s..t’: Bruce McWilliam unplugged in furious farewell

    Three weeks ago, Seven boss James Warburton sent an all-staff email in which he heaped praise on the company’s soon-to-depart commercial director Bruce McWilliam, lionising the 68-year-old as “an icon of the Australian media industry”, reports The Australian’s James Madden

    “Things won’t be the same without a constant stream of texts and emails from Bruce.”

    This reporter can vouch for that. On Wednesday, McWilliam – the legendary corporate fixer, legal adviser, commercial deal maker and media communicator – sent me a text message in response to a number of straight­forward questions The Australian had asked about his handling of an alleged fraud investigation relating to the misuse of a company expense account at Seven in 2022.

    The text began: “Mate you’re a piece of shit.”

    [Read More]

    Seven expenses investigation ‘not of great consequence’: McWilliam

    Seven’s outgoing commercial director Bruce McWilliam privately admitted that the network had examined claims about the potential misuse of company resources just two days after denying elsewhere that any investigation had been conducted, report Nine Publishing’s Calum Jaspan and Jordan Baker.

    The admission, along with his description of the allegations as “not of great consequence”, is contained in correspondence between McWilliam and a group of senior News Corp editors in October 2022.

    [Read More]

    Bruce McWilliam is known for his fiery emails and texts. We pull apart one he sent today

    Seven’s outgoing commercial director Bruce McWilliam is known in media circles for his prolific and punchy emails and texts. When McWilliam’s departure from the network was announced last month, Seven chief executive James Warburton even told staff: “Things won’t be the same without a constant stream of texts and emails from Bruce, who as we know doesn’t believe in spell check or auto-correct!” reports Nine Publishing.

    Hours after the Herald and The Age on Wednesday published a story revealing an expenses scandal involving the Sunrise breakfast program and former star executive producer Michael Pell, McWilliam hit the keyboard to fire off a text message to several journalists in a bid to minimise the fallout.

    That text, obtained by the Herald and The Age, is deconstructed below by our reporters.

    [Read More]

    Business of Media

    Colleagues pay tribute to Channel 7 news reporter Nathan Templeton after his sudden death

    Tributes have poured in for Channel 7 reporter Nathan Templeton who died suddenly on Monday evening, leaving behind two young sons, reports News Corp’s Emma Kirk.

    The Herald Sun reported that in the last couple of years the 44-year-old father had shied away from the spotlight to deal with personal issues and he had suffered a medical episode while walking his dog along the Barwon River near Geelong in Victoria.

    [Read More]

    See Also: Sunrise reporter Nathan Templeton passes away aged 44

    Taylor Auerbach’s lawyer argues Bruce Lehrmann’s ‘silence was deafening’ in response to new evidence in defamation case

    The lawyer for former Seven Network producer Taylor Auerbach has argued Bruce Lehrmann‘s “silence was deafening” in response to explosive evidence about his dealings with the network, reports the ABC’s Patrick Bell.

    The Federal Court has released submissions from Auerbach’s lawyer Rebekah Giles, days ahead of an expected judgment in the case.

    Network Ten called Auerbach last week to testify as part of its revived defence against Lehrmann’s defamation claim.

    [Read More]

    Four Paramount directors to step down as company discusses Skydance merger

    Four Paramount Global directors are expected to leave the board soon, as the Shari Redstone-controlled entertainment company discusses a merger with Skydance Media, reports The Wall Street Journal’s Jessica Toonkel.

    Dawn Ostroff, a former Spotify executive, Nicole Seligman, an attorney and former president of Sony Entertainment, Frederick Terrell, a veteran investment banking executive, and Rob Klieger, Redstone’s longtime attorney, are expected to step down from the board in coming weeks, according to people familiar with the situation.

    [Read More]

    Blow to New Zealand media as two main news outlets announce programme closures and job cuts

    New Zealand’s news media has been dealt a major blow after two of its primary news outlets announced programme closures and hundreds of job losses between them on the same day, leaving the country with just one state-owned news television service and many senior journalists out of work, reports The Guardian’s Eva Corlett.

    On Wednesday morning, Warner Bros. Discovery confirmed it would close all its Newshub news operations, including the news website, the morning television show and the 6pm television bulletin, resulting in roughly 300 job losses.

    By the afternoon TVNZ – the state-owned television broadcaster – had confirmed it would axe its long-running current affairs programme Sunday, consumer affairs programme Fair Go, and stop its midday and late-night bulletins, resulting in the loss of another 68 media roles.

    [Read More]

    Getty Images CEO calls for industry standards around AI

    Craig Peters is bullish on AI. The CEO of Getty Images, who is taking part in an innovation summit on artificial intelligence being held Wednesday at Cannes’ international TV market MIPTV, remains clear-eyed about the dangers generative AI could pose to the creative industries, reports The Hollywood Reporter’s Scott Roxborough.

    “What concerns me is that not everyone wants there to be more creators, some want the creators to be automated away. You saw that play out in the LA strikes last year,” says Peters, speaking to The Hollywood Reporter ahead of his MIPTV session. “Not everybody wants to eliminate the societal issues that can come from this technology, there are people who want to exploit this technology…That’s what keeps me up at night.”

    [Read More]

    Television

    Nine set for its own series on border security

    Nine has a new Factual in the pipeline set to be its own version of Border Security. Nine is keeping its powder dry on the series except to confirm it will be a locally produced series, reports TV Tonight.

    Speaking recently at Screen Forever, Adrian Swift, Nine’s Head of Production and Development said, “The things that we tend to lean into are the blue lights, RBT, Emergency, Paramedics. We’ve got a new sort of version of a Border Security show coming,… these are big universal things that we all experience, police, hospitals, airports, all those kinds of things. ”

    [Read More]

    Heartbreak High is back to satirise Australia’s culture wars and make you laugh

    Heartbreak High is back in session. Season two of the sexually-charged, reimagined Australian high school drama launches on April 11 – and this term culture wars are kicking off, reports News Corp’s Mikaela Wilkes.

    PE teacher Timothy Voss – played with relish by Angus Sampson – believes young males are experiencing a crisis of confidence and wants to awaken Hartley High students to the perils of the “woke agenda”.

    [Read More]

    Sports Media

    This absurd boxing match shows how profitable sports media has become

    In early 2021, former professional baseball player Jose Canseco agreed to a boxing match against Billy Football, a 21-year-old intern for digital media platform Barstool Sports. Canseco had been hoping to fight one of the Paul brothers (Logan or Jake), both of whom had become famous as social media influencers and one of whom had dated Canseco’s daughter, writes David Bockino in an excerpt of his book Game On, How Sports Media Grew Up, Sold Out, and Got Personal with Billions of Fans.

    But they ignored his challenge, confident that they could secure better opponents on the celebrity boxing circuit. Canseco moved on, reverting to an old beef with Dan Katz (a.k.a. Big Cat), the co-host of popular Barstool podcast Pardon My Take. On Twitter (now X), Canseco threw the first jab: “The only person that dodges more than the Paul boys is @BarstoolBigCat.”

    [Read More]

    The post Roundup: Bruce McWilliam, Blow to New Zealand media, The profitability of sports media appeared first on Mediaweek.

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