The big story of this year's Logie Awards wasn't the fact that Hamish Blake won the Gold Logie, but that the Herald-Sun published the results online a good 90 minutes before they were actually announced at the ceremony. What we can learn from this is not just that TV awards shows are so dull that their mistakes are more interesting than their successes, but also that Google is the most powerful player in Australian media.
Mumbrella has a detailed account of the whole situation, but here's the speedy version: the Herald Sun was given the results in advance so it could meet its deadlines for paper editions, but then screwed up and published the results online. The paper tried to blame Google, saying that the search giant had somehow gained access to its still-in-testing iPad edition and that the results story never appeared on its site prior to the announcement on the delayed TV broadcast. Google politely but firmly refuted those claims, which frankly lacked credibility given screen grabs doing the rounds throughout the evening. Seems much more likely that someone actually set the story live in one system and didn't recognise the flow-on effect.
What's interesting about this isn't the embargo screw-up: that happens all the time. It's that the Hun chose as its defence the "it wasn't us, it was Google" argument. This leads to two possible scenarios:
- The story really was leaked through the Herald Sun's in-development iPad app, proving that the team are so keen to be featured in Google News and search results that this still-secret project has been opened up to Google's search spiders already.
- The Herald Sun needed someone to blame, and picked Google as a recognisable brand name whose inner workings are a mystery to most people, thus hoping that its story might be momentarily believed.
The big lesson in both scenarios? Google has the power, and the Herald Sun has a lot of digital egg on its face.
Picture by Getty, via the Logies-loving team at PopSugar