Money talks (doesn’t it?)

The Australian today is asking questions about deals between networks and advertisers that allow for editorial spots in current affairs programmes.

The issue came to light after Sony Australia’s head of consumer marketing Toby Barbour said an advertising campaign for Sony’s 3D televisions that would only run on Seven as a result of the company’s single-network advertising deal included provision for the brand to appear in editorial segments on Sunrise and Today Tonight.

“That’s certainly our intention,” Mr Barbour told the newspaper. “Sunrise and Today Tonight need to confirm.

“It’s likely they’ll do a segment on 3D TV.”

Advertising messages in factual programs is covered by the TV code of practice, administered by ACMA. Such content must be readily distinguishable by viewers from program material.

But it’s a fine line between Editorial and Product Placement / Integration as seen on shows such as The Block, MasterChef and So You Think You Can Dance. There are plenty of Traffic and Finance spots on News shows with blatant sponsorship too.

Sony has had three video clips about 3D TV on the Sunrise website this year including a 3D TV screen, a verbal mention from David Koch and technology presenter Peter Blasina and a product demonstration including prominent shots of the Sony logo on the featured TV screen and on 3D glasses

But Seven’s morning TV producer, Adam Boland, said Sunrise had no advertising deal with Sony but it had a contra deal to feature a Panasonic screen on the set, which was disclosed as required in in-program billboards and in the show’s end credits.

Seven group sales chief James Warburton said,”We don’t do any deals with editorial and any client suggesting we do is living in a dream world.”

Source: The Australian


  1. Just needs one good law suit – like when KMart (I think) was hit for lots of $$ for all the qualifications in small print whenever they said everything was “x% off” – now all the adverts you see from all stores are much clearer. We need a test case to get an ‘Advertorial’ banner added to the screen on all these fluff pieces.

    Clearly the networks don’t care that their news is seen as close to worthless by most people due to this practice.

  2. Media Watch has actually covered this issue before with Seven’s Sunrise doing a “News Article” on JetStar which also happens/ed to be a Major sponsor of the program… Also Sky Business Channel was also featured in an episode for their “story” on Nestle… Sneaky buggers! But if the media watchdog isn’t doing anything about it then what can be done!?

  3. they say they don’t enter into deals for editorial comment, then how come very second story on ACA or TT looks like an advertisement for a major retail chain e.g. Myer, David Jones, Harvey Norman, etc etc. It must be very charitable for these shows to give so many free kicks to these retailers??

  4. Advertorials like the ones on the 9 am shows on 7 and 9 and 10’s The Circle,
    should definitely be banned and it’s surprising it hasn’t, asthey make Aus TV
    look like a laughing stock to continue allowing them. I even think the ABA should ban advertorials aired on 7,9,10 from about 1.30 am – 4 am as well.

  5. I think the laws regarding advertorial content in news and current affairs should be strict, and adhered to, it’s misleading. But then again, people are dumb enough to actually believe the faux self-proclaimed experts and advertising spiel isn’t anything but misleading and false, which are dished up on these shows because they’re too lazy to do their own research.

  6. I seldom watch the breakfast programmes but I noticed an advertorial presented by Jaynie Seale this morning on Today. Can’t remember what the product was or the name of the segment but it struck me as inappropriate to have such content on a morning “news” programme. I expect it on TMS, KAK and Circle. It was definitely part of Today and not a normal ad break. Don’t know how long this has been going on but it compelled me to turn off the TV.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.