It seems to have been finalised rather quickly, but a deal has been struck that merges Nine and Fairfax. There is a lot of good news coming if this deal goes ahead.
First, the name, Nine, will replace Fairfax as is only to be expected given that Nine shareholders will have 51 per cent while Fairfax shareholders will have 49 per cent.
Second, it may take a bit of judicious pruning, but, hopefully, the private diaries, regurgitated Greens and GetUp! media releases, executive summaries of Tax Justice Network and Australia Institute reports, bad drug and goon sack fuelled conspiracy theorising, transcripts of sessions of the more bizarre forms of therapy, drafts of suicide notes and random rants from sad, deranged women in Melbourne’s inner-northern suburbs that are currently known as The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald will go and with staff who can actually write an honest journal will again be employed to produce mastheads that the public will want to read
Third, hopefully, under the new management team, and one has to assume that Nine isn’t stupid enough to ditch the left wing journalists only to keep the left wing managers who employed them, there will be no opportunity for the incestuous cross-pollination between Fairfax journalists and Their ABC (cue music, Faith Hill, This Kiss) that could only have been an attempt by the National broadcaster to entrench its left-wing view in the print media.
Fourth, the whole business reminded me of that old country song that went something like:
Oh ma darlin’, oh ma darlin’, oh ma darlin’ Clementine;
Thou art lost and gone forever; Fairfax merged with Channel Nine.
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