The day Journalism died


Like a police officer who is expected to write a number of tickets to ensure a departmental quota is hit, we now have the emergence of “journalists” that have to bring in enough paying business to partially fund their own existence.  Or if they are good, fully fund their own existence and have some left over for the shareholders too.

If Fairfax are doing this in Australia, you can bet they’re doing it here.    Read more »

Fairfax announces its own restructuring. I’m offering a translation

Fairfax (the Stuff people) made an announcement yesterday.

Further changes for Fairfax newsrooms are likely, with management unveiling plans on Thursday to restructure editorial staff into local teams and specialist areas – and away from being clustered around the company’s newspapers.

Staff were told of the proposal – which is another step in the media company’s refocus to digital news – in a series of meetings across the country. There will be a period of consultation with final decisions expected in mid June.

Many jobs have been earmarked for disestablishment, others will be rescoped, and new roles will be created. Fairfax declined to provide numbers of how many roles were affected but executive editor Sinead Boucher said the proposal was not about reducing headcount.

“We are boosting our reporting capability in small and large communities, and by streamlining our print-focused production processes, increasing the ratio of content creators from just over half to almost two thirds.”

“We need digital-first, socially driven newsrooms that are structured to produce quality journalism for different audiences and across platforms – and this is an exciting structure geared towards building a dynamic, responsive newsroom.

“It’s an entirely different way of operating that puts our journalists even closer to the communities they cover,” Boucher said.

Let’s go over that again.   Read more »

Why is Fairfax protecting the identity of an ISIS hugging scumbag?

Why is Fairfax protecting a terrorist enabler?

A  New Zealand woman who travelled to Syria last year for what were believed to be humanitarian reasons is understood to be trying to negotiate with Australian officials to return to Sydney.

The woman, who has dual New Zealand-Australian citizenship, was said to be offering to help authorities with information about networks in the region.

The woman, who Fairfax has chosen not to name over fear for her safety, lives in Sydney’s Bankstown and was previously married to a man from the city.

She is the latest in a string of people who have travelled to the troubled region who now want to return home. One member of Islamic State (IS), a former health worker from Victoria, has reportedly told Australian authorities he wanted to return and warn would-be jihadists against joining the terror group.    Read more »

Why wasn’t the headline “Fleeing scumbag crashes”

Once again the media are beating up the police with their headlines.


The reality is somewhat different from the headline.

The 33-year-old’s erratic driving caused damage to vehicles in a Hornby residential street at 5.45pm.

She fled in her black Ford Explorer but police chased her.

The pursuit was abandoned a short time later and a search started for her car.   Read more »

When media mislead – This time it is Fairfax

I noticed this article in this morning’s Stuff.co.nz detailing a light aircraft crash in the USA where the cause is thought to be the pilot
taking ‘selfies’.

A pilot who lost control while taking selfies was likely the cause of a small plane crash that killed two men this past spring, according to US federal investigators.

Pilot Amritpal Singh, 29, and his passenger were killed instantly when Singh’s Cessna 150K crashed into a wheat field shortly after midnight May 31. The wreckage was discovered around 7am local time that morning.

A GoPro camera mounted to the plane’s windshield recorded Singh and several other passengers taking selfies on their mobile phones during a series of short flights before the crash, the US National Transportation Safety Board found. While the GoPro didn’t record the flight where Singh crashed, investigators portrayed a pattern of the pilot taking selfies and possibly texting while giving rides to passengers above Front Range Airport, about 40 kilometres east of Denver.

“During the climb-out portion of flight, the pilot uses his mobile phone to take a self photograph. The camera’s flash was activated and illuminated the cockpit area,” NTSB investigators reported. “During the climb-out phase, the pilot was seen making keyboard entries to his cell phone and additional keyboard entries on a portion of flight consistent with the downwind leg.”

Singh landed safely after that flight, picked up another passenger, and took off again, crashing a few minutes later.

This is a story in the World section and actually occurred in the United States, and involves a specific aircraft…a Cessna 150K.

Stuff  however, for some reason, chose to use a photo of the New Zealand aircraft ZK-RXL that crashed in Waimate late last year.    Read more »

The duplicity of the media, naming people who asked not to be named

Don’t you just love the Fairfax crowd…they even crow about their naming of people who asked not to be named…because they are afraid of the person they are informing on, who incidentally is a convicted killer who threatened them with the same.

fairfaxscum Read more »


This is what Fairfax and Waikato Times calls an apology

Yesterday we wrote about the slamming the Waikato Times got from the Press Council…with all the professional media people on the Council and the EPMU hacks all voting to uphold the complaint.

Only the womble members voted against.

The Waikato Times thought that despite them featuring their hatchet job on the front page despite there being not a shred of evidence to support their claims, that they would run the apology in the middle of the Christmas holidays and buried inside the paper. They preferred instead to focus on the jubblies of Miss Whangamata for their front page.

Their apology, such as it is is now online.

fairfax-apology Read more »

Vance gets apology, Fairfax boss happy journo sources and comms protected…hmmm

Andrea Vance has received an apology today from Parliamentary Services.

Big deal, so what…but what is interesting is this comment from Fairfax boss Sinead Boucher:

Fairfax group executive editor Sinead Boucher said she welcomed the apology as a the resolution of privacy complaint Vance made over the incident.

“I am happy that this complaint has been resolved to Andrea’s satisfaction, and in a way that recognises the importance of journalists protecting their communications and the confidentiality of their sources.”

Fairfax didn’t give two hoots about my privacy, nor my sources, nor my communications.  They aided and abetted a criminal hacker and their journalists still go on and on about it. Read more »

Is Native Advertising destroying journalism?

Andrew Sullivan seems to think that native advertising most certainly is destroying journalism.

He comments on Ezra Klein’s Vox project raising $110 million over recent years and their stated business plans.

If the new media brands that have emerged over the last couple of years were described (accurately) as new advertising agencies, the stories might not have had as much traction (or contained as much hope for the future of journalism). But that, it is quite clear, is what most of these new entities are. Vox has now dropped any pretensions that it is not becoming an ad agency, creating “articles” that perpetuate and distribute the marketing strategies of major corporations.

The logic of this, from a business standpoint, is so powerful almost no one can resist it. Display or banner advertising is sinking into an after-thought, leaving journalism with a huge revenue crisis – especially when you have no subscription income from readers. And when you’re drowning in venture capital, the pressure to to find a way to pay it back eventually must, even now, be crushing. There’s no other explanation for the fullscale surrender of journalism to what would, only five years ago, have been universally understood as blatant corruption.

What always amazes me about the interviews with the various media professionals involved is their use of the English language. It’s close to impenetrable to anyone outside the industry – e.g. “publishers have to get better with understanding the product side of native” – which, of course, helps to disguise the wholesale surrender of journalism to public relations. What also amazes me is how silent the actual editors of these sites are on the core, and once-deemed-unethical, foundation of their entire business. So we’re unlikely to hear Ezra explain to his liberal readers how he’s now engaged in the corporate propaganda business. But if you scan the interview with Vox‘s new fake article guru, Lindsay Nelson, some truths slip out. To wit:

You’re going to need to be great storytellers and create things that help advertisers with the goals that they have for that quarter … We’re trying to become a consulting partner, where we help brands and guide them to develop a content marketing strategy that is 12-months long … If there’s something in the news that a brand wants to be close to you can get them up and running with the same type of polish that they would expect from advertising that takes much longer.

So even breaking news may well be advertising in the near future. And good luck telling the difference.

Read more »

Are NZ’s Political Commentators Morons?

One has to wonder about how stupid New Zealand’s political commentators are.

They seem totally immune from either common sense or numerical analysis.

The biggest moronic statement is that National in its third term is like Labour was in their third term.

Lets fact check this with some basic analysis that a monkey could probably put together in about 15 minutes unless they were working for Fairfax, when it would take them three days and they would still come up with the wrong conclusion.

Rough Monkey Analysis of 2005 election result v 2014 election result:

2005 v 2014 Elections  2005 2014 Difference
% Vote Seats % Vote Seats
Labour 41.1 50 25.13 32 -18
New Zealand First 5.72 7 8.66 11 4
Greens 5.3 6 10.7 14 8
United Future 2.67 3 0.22 1 -2
Jim Anderton 1.16 1 -1
National 39.1 48 47.04 60 12
Maori 2.12 4 1.32 2 -2
ACT 1.51 2 0.69 1 -1
Total 121 121 0

Some of the really obvious things that come out are:

  1. In 2005 National went very close to winning, losing by 2%.
  2. In 2014 Labour were only just over half of Nationals vote, losing by 22%.

So the Fairfax monkey doesn’t get too confused lets leave it with those two simple facts.

And ask the monkey to come back with an answer to the question why is a comparison between the 2005 and 2014 election results relevant?