Dr Mumbo

Nothing to see over at News Corp, according to The Australian

Dr Mumbo has been reading The Australian a lot over the last few days, and I’ve got to say, it seems Ten, Seven, Nine, ABC, The Guardian, basically every single major media company is going through it at the moment. All, it would seem, except for News Corp.

Check it out!

Over at the ABC, one of its “most senior reporters” has “launched an extraordinary attack on Australia”. On Australia! Wow. What a target to attack. This is a true crisis, given ‘Australia’ is the major demographic for the ABC. Oops!

Nine is “battered by storm of its own making”, according to a balanced op-ed that uses the terms ‘crisis’, ‘engulfing’, ‘disaster’, ‘scandalous’, ‘immediate’, ‘firestorm’, and ‘rip a fresh hole in its ­already anaemic advertising revenue stream’ in its first three sentences – just to paint the picture (the unrelated shot at the advertising revenue was particular snarky, Dr Mumbo feels).

Perhaps fearing they hadn’t yet turned the hose on Ten, The Australian quickly sent out a breaking news email to its subscribers at 10:05am on Monday morning with the headline ‘Breaking: Wilkinson seeking $1.8m in costs from Ten’.

What’s next? Waleed punches Rove!

And, just to swat away any talk of the other media companies stepping into the big leagues, it seems even sensible The Guardian can’t keep its staffers under control. Tssk!

According to The Australian, The Guardian Australia’s political reporter Amy Remeikis was “getting extremely worked up” at the Sydney Writers Festival on Sunday, where she was “hysterically lecturing” the crowd.

And Seven, who have had many issues of late, now have a new news boss, Anthony De Ceglie, telling the company’s journalists to “stop worrying about the traditional ratings war with rival Nine, and instead focus on taking risks”.

Risks! That’s not what shareholders want to hear (Dr Mumbo predicts if Seven’s news ever slips to #2, they may quickly stop focusing on taking risks).

Still, Dr Mumbo feels The Australian is being a bit too smug of late.

We know everything is currently rosy at News Corp, and there’s nothing much in the way of foreboding doom over at Rupert’s outlets, as far as we can tell from the pages of The Australian — but is this really a reason to pile on the other media companies?

News Corp staffers have it pretty good at the moment. After all, where else do you see the global bosses flying into the country, even though they all live on the other side of the planet, just to tell everyone how appreciated they are?

It’s rare, we admit, and it’s a shame to see The Australian gloating — just because it happens to be immune to the global downturn in media advertising, just because it has an unshakeable print news product, and just because it can boast the most exclusively paywalled content in the land.

We admit, it must be very nice over at News Corp. But can’t you take the boot off your rivals?


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