Archive for September 21st, 2009

NRL and AFL Finals

Good evening Stuart,

I just heard your conversation about the finals systems used by the various codes, and it's one of my hobby-horses so I just have to jump in. The McIntyre system is better without a shadow of a doubt in my mind as it correctly gives the higher ranked teams a deserved advantage in the first week. I think it is completely reasonable to force sudden death on the bottom two teams, and give only the top two teams a guarantee of a second week.

The unpredictability of the McIntyre system is also much more interesting for the fans than the AFL's system.

Ultimately though, as you said, if you win your games, you will progress.

Best wishes,
Samuel Gordon-Stewart

September 21st, 2009 at 11:39pm

The race begins…

Who will criticise A Current Affair first? Today Tonight or Media Watch.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority has found that General Television Pty Ltd, the licensee of GTV, breached the Commercial Television Industry Code of Practice 2004 (the code) by failing to present factual material accurately in a segment of A Current Affair about a debt recovery company broadcast on 6 January 2009.

Source: Press release from The ACMA (as they like to be called).

The other question is, who has the bigger archive of A Current Affair broadcasts? Today Tonight or Media Watch.

Oh, what’s that? Another question? The most important question…”who cares?”. Hmmm, good point.


September 21st, 2009 at 05:50pm

Mondays with Maritz: The gardens are still do

Dear today for day of lovely for all of do readings today,

Mrs. Porrit of the English teachings did do say to me of concern for my story of previous about Mr. Boss doing go away for week sot interstate after I did do the compostings for him as she was do think that maybe and perhaps Mr. Boss was doing the firings and not the going away times but was not of sure how to be to do be doing tell.

This did do much concernings for me as I was do see of possible and was doing worry of how to be do find new job and then also to be doing payments of the renting as I am much good at the gradenings but not of the best of for do the Englishes which does do cause of problem when doing the look for jobs of workings.

The newses though are much good as Mr. Boss did do come back to the Sydney yesterday and did vist of my house which was much lovely and he met nice cat Slavcatchski in his bed which pleased Slavcatchski and Mr. Boss for as they are much usually do only meet of when I am do take Slavcatchski to the workings of occasional times. Mr. Boss did do say that relatives are doing of the better and he will be go back away in soon for some of week and that but he is to be still do like for me to be doing the work of gardrens and did do give of keys to gradren for the workings, which is much wonderful as I am of many long times behind in the workings of gradren and must be do many plantings and jobs with also build of the compostings.

Mr. Boss did do stay for the afternoon tea time which was with lovely neighbour Mrs. Lesley of next door who did do come over with the scones as I did do make of the cups of tea and coffee as well also the pumpkin and orange cake which is much lovely of the tastes and Mr. Boss did do say of reminding him for of the carrot cake which is not recipe I am do have done make and must now be do try and also of do some the testings of different. I am do think maybe of one day I should do open of restuarant which would have many foods of not the common much in this country.

I am must do go so please to be having wonderful week and lovely.

From Maritz
Ms. Maritzkrozlavsky Throrglasnishozly

September 21st, 2009 at 03:12pm

Bob Francis can teach the radio industry a thing or two

5AA Adelaide’s Bob Francis is a bit like Stan Zemanek on steroids. He knows where the line is, he knows how to negotiate it, and he knows how to get his audience to respond in a way which doesn’t involve official complaints. Put simply, he is a professional shock jock who could teach a few people in the radio industry a thing or two.

Bob stirred the pot last week when a woman named Sylvia called him to give him a piece of her mind, which resulted in him responding with a string of “insults” from which The Sunday Mail decided to remove most of the letters. In fact, the way the article was written, you’d think Bob had rung up the local seniors club and abused them for breathing, when in reality the woman gave as good as she got and is probably younger than Bob.

But enough of my interpretation of it, judge for yourself (viewer discretion is advised…you know what to expect).

It is wrong of me to put Bob Francis and Kyle Sandilands in the same category because, quite frankly, one is a media professional with a well-honed sense of what his audience expects and tolerates, whilst the other is an arrogant buffoon who keeps blindly yelling at a potential avalanche. There is a mild similarity of style though…and I think Kyle could escape from the current witch-hunt (a deserved witch-hunt) if he were to learn a thing or two from Bob Francis. Firstly, he needs to be seen to be targeting an older demographic, which probably means he should take a night shift…secondly there is a significant difference between having fun at the expense of somebody else, and having fun with somebody who is getting as much out of it as you. Kyle needs to learn to master the latter and stop doing the former.

Kyle could make it as a shock jock, but he needs to seriously reconsider his act first.

Anyhoo, back to Bob, I was surprised to see a University lecturer being quoted by a newspaper who actually made sense…maybe I just far too used to them all droning on about global warming.

UniSA communications lecturer Dr Jackie Cook said the foul-mouthed exchange “should not surprise anyone”.

“Conflict creates good radio,” she said. “It’s performance, it’s persona, it’s not him, and sometimes they push it a bit far.”

But of all of it, Bob deserves the last word on this.

“It’s after nine o’clock and under the rules of radio you can do almost what you like,” he said. “She was harsh on me, I didn’t say a thing. I let her go and she kept having a go.”

Francis said Sylvia’s call “lit up the switchboard” and was “one of the best calls I’ve had”.

“She made my day. I wish that would happen every night of the week, I’d have the best bloody rated radio show in the world,” he said.
“It was absolute entertainment and if anyone didn’t like it they can go and get f—ed,” he told the Sunday Mail.

No more need be said.


September 21st, 2009 at 02:47pm

Murray-Darling communities ravaged by water buybacks

Hi Jim,

Re: your recent story about Murray-Darling communities suffering due to water buybacks…it's great to see the national media taking an interest in the story at long last. Communities in the Murray-Darling region have been complaining about this for a long time without getting much coverage.

I was in Deniliquin recently working as a journalist for radio 2QN and a couple stories from my fortnight there are related. Firstly, you mentioned areas which are heavily reliant on agriculture. Conargo shire, near Deniliquin, has the highest concentration of employment in a single industry in the country according to a recent Bankwest study, with 81.4 per cent of people in the area employed in agriculture, far exceeding the next highest concentration which is 31% in Holroyd, Sydney, working in manufacturing. The same study found that the Goulburn Ovens Murray region is one of the hardest hit by the financial crisis, with employment levels dropping by ten percent since November 2007. The study is available from

Also during my recent fortnight there, Penny Wong had a publicity stunt of a flying visit to the region, in which she spoke to almost nobody and avoided answering media questions, preferring to waffle on about her peculiar announcements. Dr. Sharman Stone MP, Federal member for Murray, made a very interesting statement to me about how farmers need better policies than the whole "waving dollars in front of desperate farmers" water buyback scheme. I have the audio of her statement around here somewhere, and I'll send it through to you shortly.

Samuel Gordon-Stewart

September 21st, 2009 at 02:55am

Free TV Australia might just force parents to parent

The Australian Christian Lobby are quite upset about a raft of proposed changes to the codes of practice which govern free-to-air commercial television in this country, and in some ways they may have a valid point, especially when it comes to the proposed ways of submitting and handling complaints, however the rest of their points seem to be along the lines of “there’s too much violence and sex on television, and there should be less, much less”…I think they’ve missed a crucial point in their attempt to further their crusade against naughtyness on the box.

One of the proposed changes which has caused significant alarm in the ACL ranks is the idea of, on the extra digital channels, removing the restrictions which require G rated programs to be shown at certain times of the day.

The commercial TV stations are trying to change the Code of Practice to allow PG programs to be screened at any time on their new digital multi-channels (which everyone has to switch over to by 2013). If this happens it would mean there would be NO set time of the day when commercial stations had to screen G-rated programs – representing a big deterioration in standards. We already have the problem of PG-rated programs containing greater levels of sex and violence. Do we want parents to NEVER have a guaranteed time when they know they can let young kids watch TV?

Oh goodness, how horrible it is that parents might actually have to monitor what their children are watching!

I have massive reservations about the blocks of time which are allocated to “child friendly” programming as, just because a program doesn’t contain violence, swearing or people being intimate, doesn’t mean that it is suitable for children to watch, and too many parents just turn a blind eye to those blocks of “child-friendly” programming because “the TV guide said it was OK for my child, who is under 15 years of age, to watch”.

Many of the shows push a particular world-view or attitude, and this can very easily differ from the values which parents are trying to instil in their children. Removing these blocks of “child-friendly” programming might just force parents to actually parent their children by paying attention to what their children are consuming from the box. Possibly more importantly, if parents notice that television programs aren’t suitable for their kids, the kids might just go outside and play.

I actually think that forcing a “the world is wonderful and everyone stands around sharing songs about the alphabet” view of the world on kids through “child-friendly” programming, especially once the kids have reached the latter half of primary school, is harmful, as an incredibly important part of growing up is finding out that you can’t trust everyone, and that bad things do happen. Children need to learn about the real world…obviously not all of the details all at once, but if they don’t learn about the real world, they will grow up to be overly trusting and ignorant.

The Australian Christian Lobby seem to favour the “wrap everyone up in wool” approach, which is unfortunate for a group which wants to positively influence the direction of the country. I fail to see how anybody can keep the many bad influences in the world at bay, if they are wrapped in enough wool to not be able to understand the problems with the bad influences.


September 21st, 2009 at 01:26am


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