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A sad day for the ABC August 19, 2011

Posted by Amanda in Australia, Media, Radio, Television.
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It might seem strange to shed tears for someone you’ve never met, or met only briefly, but I’m sure I’m not the only person at the ABC who’s done that today.

This morning we heard about the deaths of Paul Lockyer, Gary Ticehurst and John Bean, and this evening the passing of Ian Carroll. I met Paul Lockyer a couple of times when I worked in NewsCAFF (News and Current Affairs) management in Sydney. He wouldn’t have remembered me, but my impressions married with the tributes that have been paid to him today – warm, approachable, a real people person. Although I don’t think I met any of the other three veteran ABC’ers who died today, I had certainly heard of them.
At the ABC we often joke about collegiality – it’s only one of our four key values, but it’s the one everyone remembers. Sometimes it’s thrown into a conversation when helping someone out, other times it’s used with a wry tone. But on days like these, it’s brought home that through the budget constraints, attacks by critics and challenges of working in a broadcasting bureaucracy, we really are all in this together.
For many of us, working at the ABC is a source of pride both in what we do and how we do it, and in being a part of one of the most respected Australian institutions. That pride binds us through triumphs and tragedies. I’m glad to be part of the ABC family today but I also shed tears for members of that family who I never knew but whose work is a shining example of what we want the ABC to be.

Ugliest ever November 21, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Fashion, Television.
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This outfit was on Oprah’s favourite things for this year so I expect there are now thousands of American women wearing the ugliest pyjama-like creation I have ever seen. Let’s hope it doesn’t make it to Australia. Talk about unflattering!

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Photos of “Pumpkin” September 18, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Media, Television.
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Now that the little girl dumped at a Melbourne train station has been identified, shouldn’t the media be obscuring her face?

If she is a victim of a crime then her face should not be shown- isn’t that the law?

Falling in lamb September 18, 2007

Posted by Amanda in advertising, Media, Television.
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Those people at Meat and Livestock Australia really know their stuff when it comes to advertising- or at least they have employed people who do.

I thought the Sam Kekovich ad was great but the new ad “Falling in Lamb” is even better.

Just in case you have missed it so far, it is an ad in the style of a movie trailer for a romantic comedy. The thing that makes it so good is that the casting, music and scripting is perfect. It is indistinguishable from a genuine movie trailer.

If only all Australian advertising could be this good.

Audio content on newspaper sites. September 17, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Media, Radio, Television.
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Newspaper sites everywhere are adding video and audio content to their websites. We are able to access mini television news bulletins, commentaries and of course the now all too common Youtube funnies.

These news organisations are attempting to claw back some market share as their hard copy circulation keeps dropping and this is a good way to offer up an interactive component that allows users to access broadcast and print versions of the same news item.

But while the online papers have realised that their audience responds to audio and video content, all too often they do not bother to make this content of the same quality as television and radio broadcasts. It seems that the print journos are just told to go and put down a voicer for their story and yet these writers are not given any voice or camera training. The result is of a quality akin to community television and radio.

If these news organisations want their content to be taken seriously, their journalists are going to have to become tri-media experts and not just writers with a microphone.

Summer Heights High September 5, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Media, Television.
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Chris Lilley is back to his best in the first episode of Summer Heights High. Each character is so well crafted that it is easy to forget that they are all played by the same actor.

The problem is that in this program, the characters are a little too authentic. Anyone who has been a high school teacher would almost have to watch this show through their fingers because it is all a bit painful to watch. The taunting of teachers by students rubs close to the bone and brings back some uncomfortable memories.

It all makes me shudder and reminds me clearly why I got out of teaching.

The people love it … June 12, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Australia, Media, Television.
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Check out this thread with people commenting about Choir of Hard Knocks

More Choir of Hard Knocks June 12, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Australia, Media, Television.
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I have just cried my way through the last episode of Choir of Hard Knocks.

Alan gave his speech so eloquently and confidence oozed out of Simon. He was almost unrecognisable.

Thank you Jonathon Welch, you have done an incredible thing. The transformation in the lives of the people in the choir is important, but I hope everyone who watched this fantastic documentary will look at the marginalised people they pass in the street differently. Maybe they will give them a smile instead of avoiding them. Maybe they will buy a copy of the Big Issue. Maybe they will stop for a chat and discover something in common.

Let’s pray that a little bit of hope and understanding has been injected into the Australian psyche.

The Chaser on ACA June 7, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Media, Television.
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The Chaser boys have obviously refused Channel Nine’s offers to jump ship and sell out for the big bucks.

What other explanation could there be for the story that aired tonight claiming that the Chaser goes too far in their stunts? Heaven forbid they might bemuse an ‘icon’ like Sophia Loren.

ACA even found a Vietnam vet who claims that their antics could be causing post-traumatic stress disorder.

Is it a coincidence that the Chaser ratings are on the up while A Current Affair’s are on the slide?

PS: For comparison, check out this comment about ACA when they were still chasing The Chaser

Choir of Hard Knocks May 30, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Music, Television.
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I can’t even watch the ads for Choir of Hard Knocks program without welling up.

There is something moving about seeing people for whom life is a challenge express themselves through song. Perhaps it is the fact that they put their heart and soul into every word that makes this music so powerful.

Creativity can do great things for marginalised people. I  think we express things through the arts that we can’t get out any other way.

I’ll be buying the CD.