CAPTION: Rachel Glucina and Mark Weldon : Introduced Scout to the world.
The New Zealand Herald reports: Rachel Glucina is leaving MediaWorks’ gossip website Scout after nine months, and consultation is underway with remaining staff, it has been confirmed. The network confirmed it had purchased Glucina’s share of Scout and she was leaving to “take up a new opportunity.”
Glucina had issued a statement on twitter saying. “MediaWorks proposes to focus its Entertainment News into NewsHub and a consultation period is now underway with staff at Scout.” Staff numbers are unclear but they are fewer than when it started in September 14 last year. Scout has been a joint initiative formed between Glucina and former Mediaworks chief executive Mark Weldon. It was widely disliked by MediaWorks staff, some of whom had previously been the subject of negative comment by Glucina in her Herald on Sunday column.
The announcement was made this week with the arrival of Australian Hal Crawford who is the new head of news at Newshub and whose appointment was bought forward due to the upheavals in the news operation recently. The company tries to reorganise its mangled brand from the embarrassing departure of CEO Weldon. Scout has had Pop! fizz existence with heavy publicity when it started, quickly disipating to the point it was largely unnoticed.
The site aimed at entertainment and gossip which is a sophisticated market. But it never really worked in New Zealand where the celebrity sector is at best trumped up at worst low rent. Scout stories Stories on today’s home page included Helen Clark joining Snapchat, Arnold Schwarzenegger being chased by an elephant in Africa and Mai Chen being at the same conference as Amal Clooney. Its first story drew widespread attention to the sites news values. It focused on a story about Mike Hosking vacuuming his car in public. Famously, it was pilloried by Hilary Barry who was shown in a picture vacuuming her car in the TV3 garage. MediaWorks did not respond to requests for clarification about its plans for the Scout brand.