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What You Think

User Opinion Story
Anthony The Koala
3 July 2019 - 5:09am
As at 02-07-2019, I withdraw a remark a little about the SBS TV's relevancy on the idea to merge the ABC and SBS. The reason is due to the launch of a new HD channel 32 "World Movies". Browsing through the electronic program guide, there is a variety of movies from China, India and Europe. It's the kind of programs that were a staple of the early days of SBS tv.

It reflects the diversity of movies from various nations. I would like to see if movies in the future emanate from Africa, South America and the Middle-East.

Although I consume programs on the other SBS channels such as Michael Portillo's train documentaries, I still hold that this program and other English-language-based programs such as "Insight" and "Dateline" could well be on the ABC. I don't see how relevant they are, especially the multicultural aspect of SBS, nor do I see the relevance of ch 33, "Food Channel". NITV could well be on either SBS or the ABC, so leave it alone.

Thank you,
Anthony of exciting Belfield
Could streaming force the ABC and SBS to merge
Neil Docherty
2 July 2019 - 10:20pm
When are these type of man going to stand up and be real men.
Real Men do not intimidate- humiliate or disrespect woman and people in general. There behaviour is a clear indication of insecurity and a huge self inflated ego, under neath it all, they are basically scared and fearful little boys. Be a man and get some help!!
3AW and Crocmedia dump former AFL star for joking about sexual assault
Neil Docherty
2 July 2019 - 5:48pm
Could this be a part of a bigger picture, Chris would do well on breakfast at 2UE if Mcquarie were to relaunch 954. Chris Smith leaves 2GB
Anthony The Koala
2 July 2019 - 5:36pm
Just a few hours ago as at 1626, 02-07-2019, I learnt that Chris Smith has left radio 2GB, https://www.2gb.com/macquarie-radio-statement-regarding-chris-smith/

Regardless of how much he earned and regardless of whether you agreed with him or not, it is sad.

While there is nothing wrong with a change in shift from afternoon to evening, time would have told us whether the ratings would have remained or changed. BUT to lose somebody who was top rating for 60 consecutive surveys and the resulting revenue, it is the worst outcome. Time will tell whether his replacement Steve Price will maintain the ratings.

Arguments saying Steve Price was not successful at breakfast because he was on 2UE and MTR are rubbish. All of 2GB's 'stars' did not rate on MTR. The fill in presenters on Alan Jones' program including Steve Price and Chris Smith have maintained 2GB's breakfast ratings. This is most likely due to the built-in audience expectations of Alan Jones' return from holidays or illness AND the goodwill built by Alan Jones.

Nevertheless both presenters have been highly rating in their own shifts. Time will tell whether Steve Price will be as successful as Chris Smith in the 1200-1500. It's management's decision!

Furthermore, even though Chris Smith has a partner with her own business, it is still a sin to deprive a person who is the breadwinner paying school fees and keeping his family under one roof. Especially a results-producing revenue raising winner such as Chris Smith.

Nevertheless today's outcome of Chris Smith's departure is warped. As I commented elsewhere on this website, Chris Smith is not the first poppy to be cut while still producing the goods, with the resulting dismissal to the detriment of the network: It happened recently with Red Symons (774 ABC = 3LO, ratings 14.8 to 7.1), to more than 40 years ago with the dumping of Gordon Chater and Gwen Plumb (2GB) for a mellow rock format.

In respect to cost cutting while a business is successful, there is nothing wrong in principle with cutting costs. Examples include reducing energy consumption, using technology to improve productivity even reducing subscriptions to goods and/or services which don't affect output, for example 2GB ceasing subscriptions to AAP. Even when Steve Price's 2000-2100 co-host Andrew Bolt departed due to a lower contract offer, ratings did not fall.

Cost cutting may include removing and/or transferring people who don't perform at the given task. But cost cutting does not apply to Chris Smith especially for a ratings winner. The photo in the papers showing a cake in acknowledgement and congratulations for 60 straight ratings wins is lip service.

Ultimately, management sinks or swims by their decisions. There are mixed signals in management decisions when there is a radical change to formats. The radio soapies made way for top 40 in the 1960s and disc jockeys to the success of the networks: 2UE, 2SM and 2UW.

On the other hand 2CH with its highly successful "beautiful music" format in the 1970s and 1980s, with ratings greater than the fm stations, suddenly dropped the format in 1987 (Wesgo takeover) and 2CH has never recovered its 'glory days', even when its DAB signal is technically the best in Sydney at 128kbs.

The same could be said of 2UE's change from "news talk" to "Talking Lifestyle" to sports. Business decisions carry a risk. Just because Australians love their sport does not translate to Australians, or at least Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne listeners to flocking to MSR. Similarly, Australians love to gamble, does not translate to 2KY (Sky Sports Radio) to top ratings.

Thus, "sticking to one's knitting", "if ain't broke don't fix it", "if you're on a good thing stick to it" is a "two-edged sword".

Now that Chris Smith has left, will the ratings in the 1200-1500 shift remain or go down? Time will tell.

Thank you,
Chris Smith leaves 2GB
2 July 2019 - 9:39am
There's more to this than meets the eye. Apart from the fact that they've actually lifted the ratings, albeit modestly, the quote doesn't ring true. Who says that when they've been fired, let alone two people in unison? Paul & Lise depart 96FM
1 July 2019 - 5:32pm
The "hunger games" redundancy rounds at the ABC under Mark Scott were all about getting rid of experienced journos and replacing them with young and inexperienced cannon-fodder. Same with the redundancies of all the experienced Regional Content Managers in the ABC regional centres. It was stupid and senseless, but quite deliberate. Reap what ye sow ... Inexperience in the newsroom leads to aborted trials
Rebel Ash
1 July 2019 - 12:09pm
Nice observation, perhaps the internet/social media is the real problem, ease of access. Inexperience in the newsroom leads to aborted trials
28 June 2019 - 3:22pm
Oh yeah, move the most personable GB personality out of his popular shift and shove him in nights, then replace him with an annoying prat. Brilliant.

Is Chris Smith about to be sacked from 2GB?
Mike Jacobson
28 June 2019 - 2:52pm
No matter how serious the message, gutter language has no place on the public airwaves. Strong language for an important message
Anthony The Koala
27 June 2019 - 8:12pm
Cutting costs despite the talent producing the results and sponsored segments in order to produce additional revenue.

Prima facie, there is nothing wrong in principle with cost cutting in a profitable business. At the same time if the 'talent' is producing the results in high ratings and higher advertising revenue, then removing that talent is like killing the goose that lays the golden egg.

It is not the first time that high rating talent has been replaced to the broadcaster's detriment. 774's (3LO's) Red Symons was dismissed. It is said that breakfast leads the rest of the station. Symons' presented the breakfast program, and 774's (3LO's) ratings halved from 14.8 to 7.4.

In the 1970s 2GB sacked Gordon Chater & Gwen Plumb. 2GB went into a mellow-rock format and the ratings plummeted until its programming format changed in 1982.

In Ian 'Lofty' Fulton's biography, "Lofty, My Life In Short", Ian recalled a story where he was rating very highly at a Brisbane FM radio station. Management wanted to negotiate a lower wage. He produced the goods, but management wanted to reduce his wages the following year. It's an oxymoron!

Thus many comments on the Daily Telegraph's page could be summed up as why fix something that isn't broken. Alternatively quoting the statement from a flyspray commercial "....when you're on a good thing, stick to it...."

Perhaps swapping presenters between the afternoon and evening shifts may well produce results. But the current presenters in their current shifts are already producing the goods. Yes there was some cost cutting in the Steve Price evening show where the former 2000-2100 co-presenter Andrew Bolt did not accept a lower paid contract. But the ratings for the 2000-2100 segment did not fall.

Perhaps I may be going off on a tangent at this point in regards sponsored segments. There is one thing that is annoying about some of the segments on 2GB. While many of the segments are obviously sponsored segments such as the "legal advice" or "financial advice" or "car advice" or "all on four advice", there are some interviews which seem like it's part of the program but get's one to think '....is this an interview or a sponsored segment?' For example 'plugs' for certain musicals or a story about 'group homes for the elderly instead of nursing homes'. Very interesting topics in their own right.

However, if radio station was to include more 'sponsored' segments in order to boost revenue, where it is not obvious that the content is sponsored or it is an actual interview, the presenter must mention that this is a sponsored segment. For example on the interview about 'group homes for the elderly', the presenter (Steve Price) could have stated that this was a newsworthy item or sponsored segment. He could have invited talk back calls on the rather interesting topic, especially given the population is ageing.

Maybe I wasn't going off on a tangent. But if a radio station was to include sponsored segments in order to boost revenue in addition to advertising revenue, then where the segment is not obviously a newsworthy or sponsored segment, then it should be stated that the segment is a news item or sponsored segment.

A further comment. Some of the commenters on the Daily Telegraph article mentioned that they have had to do what their employers wanted in working another shift. That is a valid comment. As mentioned earlier, swapping shifts between the afternoon and evening shifts may work and not affect ratings. But for many jobs, it is not the regularity of the shift that is important, but whether you are on call, these include paramedics, nurses, doctors, electricians and plumbers, to name a few. Similarly where a job is commodified it would not matter what shift one performs.

But, there are jobs which are not personality dependent as radio. There are critical areas of our society where regularity of shift is irrelevant such as emergency workers.

Thank you,
Anthony of exciting and dynamic Belfield
Are Denis Walter’s days numbered at 3AW


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