Another News Site Bytes The Dust Ahead Of Court Action
They are dropping like flies, ill thought-out online media operations that have failed to work out where their revenues will come from before they are launched often costing ill-informed investors tens of thousands of dollars.
The latest online media Company to hit the wall News.net who had the notion that they could compete with the likes of Nine Media, News Corp, and global media Companies without having the same pulling clout as their competitors.
News.net has suspend operations as of today following pending action in the Federal Court and the Fair Work Commission.
Currently they owe employees and suppliers thousands of dollars in unpaid wages and invoices and at this stage there appears to be no white knight to rescue them.
Nine Media reported that the company’s sole director Brendt Munro told staff last night that he had no choice but to temporarily stop operating, three days after this masthead revealed the entity was facing federal court action over its inability to pay staff and third-party services.
At this stage there appears to be little chance of anyone being paid unless there is an investment of capital in the business.
The grandiose plan was to initially employ 170 people and launch more than 1500 local, national, and international websites that could be linked to the one domain name. It was doomed from the start as more people in Australia than ever before are now seeing social media and questionable web sites and delivering “fake news” according to a Deloitte study conducted last year.
Multiple staff who have spoken to Nine Media on anonymity for fear of retribution are owed, in some cases, up to two months’ worth of wages.
It’s also emerged that the company that pays the salaries is a subsidiary of an Overseas (sic) parent company.
The decision by Munro to temporarily halt operations was made less than 24 hours before he was required to attend a Fair Work Commission hearing lodged by the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance over failure to pay wages and superannuation.
Munro is listed as the sole director of News.net a venture that formed in early April and was being led by former AAP editor-in-chief Tony Gillies. Staff were told Gillies was the chief executive and he was listed as such on the website, but he told this masthead on Sunday he was hired as a consultant.
At this stage it’s not known as to whether Gillies has been paid for his consulting work.
Another problem for the Company was that the lease on their Bond St office in Sydney, was terminated because of a failure to pay their rent.
Michael Norris, a one-time owner of Brisbane radio station 4BH, was known as the “chairman” but was not listed as a director on ASIC filings. His media empire fell apart in the mid-2000s when receivers and liquidators were appointed to 10 companies linked to him Nine Media claims.
The Company claims on their web site that they would initially launch 2,000 fact-based websites in cities and towns all over Australia.
They also promised to change the way people consume their daily news.
They described their content as Independent quality journalism, free of political agenda, free of commercial bias, and free of charge.
“We are international, national, and local” they claimed.