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Media Watch (1989 - current)

Interstitial series
Weekly x 15 minutes

Series synopsis:

Media Watch is a weekly 15-minute program that offers analysis and criticism of Australia’s media and print, radio, television and online journalism. The program is led by its presenter, with short inserts illustrating the particular items being discussed. Each episode contains three or four stories. Media Watch is broadcast on Monday nights following Four Corners (2008).

Curator’s Notes:

The original presenter was Stuart Littlemore QC(Queen’s Counsel), a barrister and former ABC journalist. Littlemore trained in ABC News then became a reporter on This Day Tonight (1967-78) and Four Corners before leaving to take up the law. He described his intentions for the new program to Angela Bennie, journialist for The Australian newspaper, in 1989. His comments are included in his book The Media And Me (1996), ‘I want to show people the problems – not tell them. The program will be contentious. I hope. And idiosyncratic’.

Stuart Littlemore was the program’s presenter for eight years and his extraordinary legacy has been the benchmark by which his successors have been judged. Subsequent presenters have come from the ranks of practising journalists, all of them at the top of their profession. They include Richard Ackland, David Marr, Paul Barrie, Liz Jackson and Monica Attard. The latest is Jonathan Holmes, a former executive producer on Four Corners. Holmes came to Australia from the UK in 1983, and was also the founding executive producer of Foreign Correspondent, and previously an ABC foreign correspondent in the US and a reporter on Four Corners.

Over the years, there have been valuable contributions to Media Watch from the different executive producers, including Jim George and David Salter for presenter Stuart Littlemore; Deb Richards for Richard Ackland; and Peter McEvoy for David Marr, Paul Barrie, Liz Jackson and Monica Attard.

Titles in this series

Media Watch – Series 11 Episode 18 1999

Richard Ackland, journalist and lawyer, became the presenter of Media Watch in 1998, following the departure of Stuart Littlemore after eight years with the program. This episode covers the issue of ‘cash for comment’ – as it became known. It ...

Media Watch – Series 9 Episode 1 1997

Stuart Littlemore QC(Queen’s Counsel), former journalist and now barrister, presents the first program for the year in the 1997 series of Media Watch. There’s a review of what’s happening in print media across the country and a stunning exposé of ...