Could Peter Meakin be Ten’s golden goose?

Veteran TV news executive Peter Meakin has joined Network Ten as executive director of news and current affairs.
Nanjing Night Net

Meakin, who will be 71 this year, now has cards to all three commercial networks, having held similar posts at Nine and Seven.

Renowned and respected as a straight-talking and hard-nosed rogue with an instinct for commercial news, Meakin is credited as the driving force behind Nine’s decades-long leadership in news and current affairs, as well as Seven’s resurgence after he unexpectedly decamped to the rival network in 2003 following a falling-out with his former boss at Nine, John Alexander.

Meakin has never disputed having called Alexander a “24-carat c—” when changes were made to the news department.

Former Four Corners executive producer and ABC news head Peter Manning once described Meakin as “the best ever news director for both Nine and Seven, getting eyeballs to the channels during their news hours with serious political events or crises”.

“He brought all his commercial and populist expertise to bear to bring a serious perspective to commercial TV. When it would have been easier to ignore difficult, serious events that were happening, Peter committed himself to intervene in the schedule.”

Announcing Meakin’s appointment to Ten, CEO Hamish McLennan says Meakin “has an extraordinary news sense and an ability to bring stories to viewers that no one else in Australia can match”.

“It also marks a new era in the way we will develop, produce and present our news and current affairs programs.”

Meakin left Seven in November 2012 following a restructure of the network’s news and current affairs division.

Meakin says that he will be part of Ten’s initiative to make a bigger name for itself in news.

Ten’s News At Five is often the struggling network’s highest rating show. Apart from the weekdaily Project and Late News, the network doesn’t have a dedicated regular current affairs show in its schedule.

Present news and current affairs head Anthony Flannery will report to Meakin.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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