Has Ten been ‘leaking’ its shows to YouTube in a PR stunt? I think so

So here’s a curious thing.

A press release from Network Ten Publicity about the 7PM Project arrived in my inbox on Friday. It urged journos to follow a YouTube link to view a clip from the show.  

7PM LEAKThe clip from The 7pm Project was innocuous enough, featuring James Mathison backstage at Miss World Australia.

The YouTube channel  has the user name “notabadlogin”. It contains only clips from Ten, which isn’t unexpected when Ten Publicity is pointing journalists towards it. Indeed, as the clip was only posted shortly before the press release to journalists was emailed out, it certainly leads one to the assumption that the same person was responsible for both things. It usually takes YouTube about 24 hours to fully index new uploads to make them easily located.

But there’s something intriguing about the first of the three other clips previously uploaded to the channel, about two weeks ago. Titled “7pm Leak”, it features an ad for the 7pm Project – which as you’re probably aware launched on Monday (with declining viewing figures as the week progressed).

The tag for the content of 7pm Leak says “LEAKED!”, describing it as “With Carrie Bickmore, Dave Hughes and Charlie Pickering making fun of the Sydney Rooster’s Nate Myles pooing in the corridor of a hotel. Ah ha ha ha ha!”.

The video looks dramatic alright – it’s even got “INTERNAL ONLY” stamped on it red letters. Which is funny, because internal content doesn’t usually have that on it. It has timecodes.

So here’s my theory…

I reckon Ten created the fake profile, and stuck the ad up in the hope that it would go viral on YouTube as unauthorised content . (It didn’t by the way – it’s only had 123 views at the time of posting.)

With a bit of luck it might even have made the papers. You know – a bit like when the so-called Underbelly leak for Nine got coverage earlier this year. Or come to that, another suspicious “leak” involving Ten for the pilot of a show not unlike The 7PM project with the working title of This Week In Shorts. which Mumbrella reported on late last year.

Perhaps what happened on Friday is that either they forgot, as they uploaded the Mathison clip – complete with the super-authentic message “James was hilarious last night talking to Miss World Australia! I lvoe (sic) this guys…” – that the so-called leaked video was on the same profile. Or perhaps the user in the Ten Publicity team has more than one YouTube profile and uploaded it to the wrong one.

Of course, there is the third possibility that they’re emailing journalists and encouraging them to watch stolen Ten copyrighted material, but it doesn’t seem very likely, does it?

Tim Burrowes


  1. Mal Damkar
    26 Jul 09
    2:51 pm

  2. Yeah, I’d say so, there were some fake masterchef tweets as well lines like ” I’m enjoying watching masterchef with my whole family” seemed a bit weird at the time, considering most where coming up with fun terms to describe contestants. Or talking about what was actually happening.

    So it would come as no surprise that TEN woould do that.

  3. Zac Martin
    26 Jul 09
    2:54 pm

  4. And they expected that to go viral…

    Also the quality of the video is too high.

  5. C K Cash
    27 Jul 09
    2:03 pm

  6. Nothing suprises me with Ten…they have been in enough strife with various things over the last few years so why would not do a PR stunt…

  7. Birddoggy
    28 Jul 09
    9:54 am

  8. I have nothing against PR stunts – if they work. Ten obviously has little idea of how to harness the grass-roots potential of this kind of marketing. Simply labeling something ‘leaked’ does not a viral make.

  9. JenR
    28 Jul 09
    10:38 am

  10. As a PR I don’t understand why Channel Ten needs to “fake” a leak just to get coverage. If the program is any good (yes this is potentially where my argument comes unstuck) then it should gain a momentum of its own.

    Fake promotion is not clever, everyone see’s through it and the negative comments – like this one – don’t enhance reputation.


  1. The BMX ad was clever, but it was also like accidentally sleeping with a hooker - mUmBRELLA