Current Affairs Timeline

Distribution of Task: Friday 13 May, 2011
Scripting: Drafts written and signed off – 14 and 16 May
Filming: 18, 20, 26, 27 May
Editing: June 21 – 24
Presentation: Day 2 June 28th, 2011

Current Affair

Current Affairs programs are some of the most highly rated and discussed programs on free to air and public broadcasting stations.  A great deal of money is spent on reporters, anchors, crew and promotion.  However, there is quite a difference between the current affairs shows on Channel 9 & 7 compared to SBS or the ABC.

Current affairs shows on commercial television are known as tabloid journalism. Tabloid journalism is one of the key differnces between public and private broadcasters. In particular, Today Tonight and A Current Affair will often pay for footage and interviews. This is referred to as ‘chequebook journalism’, whereby every story has a price and they will pay huge sums of money to secure the deal.  Scandals, assaults, theft, dodgy tradesmen, social welfare, minority groups etc…are all fodder for the tabloid journalist. The stories are likely to be sensationalised by exaggeration, taking footage or interviews out of context and exploiting the material.

Alternatively, shows like The 7.30 Report on the ABC are considered serious journalism and usually interview politicians or present interviews with respected academics, commentators and/or witnesses. They do not exploit there material and do not pay people for stories.

Over the next few weeks we are going to look at tabloid journalism shows and create one of our own.

I advise you watch Today Tonight, A Current Affair and the 7.30 Report so that you can see the difference between tabloid journalism and serious journalism. Also, you will need to understand the format of tabloid journalism to complete the assignment.
Sample TV News Script


After some discussion about social media, convergence and writing for blogs the class thought that a Facebook page would be a more useful form of communication than the media blog. Therefore, I will test this by setting up a Facebook page and see whether this gains more hits than the current blog.

Media Facebook Page

Privacy and Consent in a Media Age

As a class we finished reading through Chapter 4 Technologies and discussed various points in the chapter.

In particular we looked at how damaging releasing footage without consent can be to those who are unaware they are being filmed or have their private footage uploaded to the internet. In the mid 2000’s Star Wars Kid was a typical example of misue of video where a student had private footage uploaded to Youtube by a group of students who found the digital footage. He was humiliated by the footage but went on to achieve notoriety and have his footage watched by over 20 million people. It even promoted a fan club where others took the footage and insterted the original video into scenes from Hollywood Films.

We discussed viral video and how this works through mediums such as Youtube. We watched the Racism in America and in particular Racism in an Elevator  as an example of Viral Video. Youtube is increasingly becoming like a tv station with people establishign their own channels.

Image Manipulation

The Royal Wedding was a media event and no doubt we will be seeing and hearing a lot more about it in the future. However, what is more interesting is how this photo has been cropped. Who do you think has been cropped out of this image. Look at the original image and think about how the meaning has been altered.