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7News Spotlight - 'Ride Of Your Life'  

31 members have voted

  1. 1. Are you going to watch '7News Spotlight - 'Ride Of Your Life''?

    • Yes - As a theme park enthusiast, of course I will!
      21
    • No - It doesn't interest me.
      10
  2. 2. Do you think 7News Spotlight will air a fair & balanced program?

    • Yes - completely fair & balanced.
      1
    • Slightly skewed to a positive angle.
      2
    • Slightly skewed to a negative angle.
      14
    • No - completely biased to the positive aspects of the theme park industry.
      1
    • No - completely biased to the negative aspects of the theme park industry.
      13

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  • Poll closed on 06/06/21 at 09:00 AM

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1 hour ago, Naazon said:

Just to ruin the hate parade on the program, the GL incident, as bad and horrible as it could have been, it didn't kill or dismember anyone. 

No, neither did the white water world slide incident, but they gave it top billing alongside some of our worst incidents.

To be a fair and balanced report, they should have mentioned other incidents in Australia, but they didn’t. 

This report had one objective, to stick it to the Australian park industry, and boy did it do that. 

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I flagged their social media ads about the program for spreading false information. 🖕

Having voted "slightly skewed to a negative angle" on the poll, I am dismayed (yet unsurprised) to have been proven so very wrong. If we'd indulged ourselves to put aside Natalie Lowbarr's Razzie Award-worthy existential bitch attack upon disembarking Valravn, or the Bogan Logan wildebeest's smug proclamation that it was "no accident" her daughter's abject disregard for basic slide safety protocol caused injury (regional public schooling, folks), there still may have been a prospective forty-five minutes of impartial and informed insight into the dynamic world of the theme park industry.

What we got instead was undiluted revenge porn. The true insult to injury was more than just the flagrant sensationalism and bias, but the complete lack of objective data about ride safety, and the narrative dubiously spun to shit all over the Australian park industry at every opportune moment. It's like their version of investigative journalism and fact-checking was to watch a series of clickbait "Mom NEARLY DIES On Slingshot Rollercoaster Ride OMG MUST WATCH!!!@@#11" videos, whack themselves off, take lunch early and call it a day.

I'm not convinced their level of research went any deeper than 30 minutes on Wikipedia and it showed. The exposition into coaster/park history was so hackneyed and there was not a single statistic presented on rate of incidence. Freak accidents happen and those responsible should pay the price. Luna Park did and Dreamworld did. Why augment that to portray our parks as some nefarious conglomerate hell-bent on profiting off injury and death? Why was that even the focal part of the program? Well, we already know the answer.

There was an opportunity to maybe end the program by looking forward in a positive light. Growing pains aside, Australia is amid an amusement park renaissance right now. Look at the stacked year we have ahead of us. It's totally unprecedented. Not an iota of airtime (pardon the pun) was spent looking forwards or highlighting the growth our industry has undertaken or the hard lessons it's learning. Instead, we get a ham-fisted montage that convolutes the entire message of the programme , Natalie sadfacing on the bleachers and a segue straight to Grant Denyer in his tinfoil hat and his big-boy pull-on nappies. Hard-hitting. 🎢

1 star out of 5; recommend avoid picking up out of 7 News' heaping discount bin of news programming.

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*opinion*

The reality is mainstream media outlets such as channel 7 are always going to try create a storyline/angle that generates clicks and views. Thats the nature of their industry, and I fully understand why they need to do that to succeed.

But surely, at a point, you've got to take a step back and ask yourself ''What the fuck are we actually doing?''

To market a product (the doco) as 'must watch' for families and an 'insight' into a relatively unseen industry and spit out that heinously bias tripe is just absolutely terrible.

Unfortunately, and as we all know, freak accidents do happen at theme parks. They are incredibly sad, and i can't even begin to imagine how those affected feel and what they've been through. Incidents such as that of TRR and the Ghost train fire fall under this cloud, and i do believe it is important that we recognise the impact they've had both on the industry itself and the Australian people.

In saying that though, blatant fear mongering and what in my opinion is abuse of the nature of these incidences for views is bang out of order. And just in case it wasn't obvious, i'd like to state that i'm in no way trying to detract or minimise the extent to which both accidents are utterly tragic and sorrowful in nature.

For the most part, i thought the Action Park segment was fine. Realistically, that park was grossly mismanaged (even if the central theme of the park was seemingly unmitigated danger), and the crazy shit, for lack of better term, that happened there, was extremely influential on the industry as it quite literally set a benchmark for what safety standards are needed and what not to do.

The TRRR segment was incredibly disappointing though imo. At a point, that is quite literally 5 years later, bringing up such a tragic event in a very biased and opinionative (rather than factual) manner doesn't seem to do anyone involved any sort of good. I did find it quite compelling to see who I Believe was a family member (mother?) of a few of the victims speak in the doco. The incident has left an unfathomable hole in her life that i couldn't relate to in the most primitive sense. If having her voice heard is something that aids in the healing process, if there could ever be one, i commend channel 7 for providing her with such a platform. It just seems a shame to me, by no fault of her own, that her genuine grief is seemingly exploited to construe that whole 'theme park is bad and super dangerous and they don't care' narrative rather than actually pay homage to such a terrible accident-4 people tragically losing their lives-and recognising the affect such incidences do have on people. If you're going to recount these things at a very public level, which i believe as a society is important, overdramatising and manipulating the nature of events to drive an exterior (and commercially motivated) narrative rather than memorialising those involved is just utterly immoral and putrid.

The Fully 6 incident segment seemed a bit dodgy. It reeks of people attempting to milk a situation for a big payout. I'm no expert, but what I am is a 6'5 bloke who's ridden 'speed slides' similar to those involved. Seems hard to believe that someone of my stature can ride these slides, baring in mind i follow the *ride instructions*, and come off completely unscathed, yet someone half my size, who'd presumably travel with a lot less force and speed, comes out second best pool of water and walks away with horrific injuries. In saying that, if all was legit and she's genuinely done nothing wrong and had this accident, thats not good and a level of accountability has to fall on-get this-the manufacturer of the ride who designs how it runs and stipulates it's operating conditions. A little side note too, having kids chuck up gang signs on national telly never does your credibility a world of good.

All in all, considering the doco promoted itself as an unprecedented look into an otherwise unseen industry, i was quite disappointed but not surprised to see it manifest into the shanty fear mongering campaign and misrepresentation of an already struggling industry in Australia that it was.

Do a bit of proper journalism. Provide an objective and respectful representation of a topic. And-most importantly-just be better.

0/5 for immoral and improper journalism.

Edited by Aw hype
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6 hours ago, TimmyG said:

No, neither did the white water world slide incident, but they gave it top billing alongside some of our worst incidents.

To be a fair and balanced report, they should have mentioned other incidents in Australia, but they didn’t. 

This report had one objective, to stick it to the Australian park industry, and boy did it do that. 

White Water incident, regardless of how it happened literally injured someone and was reported (hyped up) in the news.

 

The GL incident, although way more severe caused 0 injuries and was reported more or less like a normal ride stoppage. The closest you get is this quote:

Quote

One witness told Fairfax Media he heard a "big bang" and saw what he believed to be wheel components fall to the ground.

"My wife and I thought these people were dead, we thought it would fall," Stephen Moss, who was visiting the park with his family, said.

"But it went about 30 degrees and then stopped. The people on it sort of screamed and then they were just silent."

In the media, there is nothing to report on since "nothing" happened.

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What bothered me about this the most was the 'funny unlucky lady' who's been in three different 'incidents'. Two of them are people jumping out of Ferris wheels and dodgems catching fire (very funny because funny lady was there), but the main one is the Battersea Big Dipper accident. Five kids died, and they didn't mention anything other than "roller coaster went the  wrong way and crashed" and showed an image of the aftermath with cheery circus music playing over the whole thing.

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10 hours ago, sansborgor said:

The third party auditor was clearly used as a scapegoat for the 2016 DW tragedy, bloke explained that it was the safest ride in the park with no safety hazards or warnings detected, still got overshadowed by a family member of the victims. I'm not suggesting that Dreamworld had the greatest level of WHS considerations prior but still, some better contesting arguments could've been made.

 

That isn't how I understood that piece. He wasn't being used as a scapegoat - he was on to say that the park failed its safety audits repeatedly, and that Thunder River was the safest in the park - you are meant to draw from this, if TRRR was the safest, that everything else in the park is literally a human mince-maker.

7 hours ago, gumb00t said:

In my honest personal opinion it seemed like Natalie just wanted a to get on a plane and do the rounds then bag the shit out of DW just cause she was there reporting the incident when it happened. 
<snip>
That mole should be ashamed of herself. Go back to the morning show mate, you’re not 60 minutes material. 

As soon as I saw the load of Las Vegas footage, I found myself asking "what the fuck are they doing in Las Vegas? Ok there's a few adrenaline attractions, and they've had a couple roller coasters over the years, but it's hardly the 'theme park \ amusement ride capital city of the world' that you'd want to base your story in - I then concluded that Natalie probably just felt like going to Vegas for a bit of a Junket and this was the best idea to get all expenses paid.

 

I only saw the first hour last night (it was enough) so I won't regurgitate everything that's already been said (also, wasn't there another thread already discussing this?), but i've got two things to add -

First - I don't believe that the Fully Six case has been resolved at this time - To comment publicly in prime time, in the middle of a razor piece on theme parks - while there's still ongoing litigation regarding the matter seems to me to be a little near-sighted. I find myself wondering how much (if anything) Channel 7 paid for their time, and whether it will impact their legal case in any way.

Secondly - and this boiled my blood - I take issue with the segment on TRRR - they've confused a few facts about the incident. As best as I can recall:

The button the 'newly trained' operator could have pressed likely would not have saved those people. The button at her station was a slow-stop button for the conveyor. The emergency stop for the conveyor was some distance away from her, and she almost certainly could not have reached it in time.
From what I remember, Thunder River had a series of 'stop' buttons, none of which were truly an emergency stop - nothing initiated a full power disconnect of the ride.
The story stated that if the operator had pressed a button the ride would have stopped in 2 seconds instead of 7. It did nothing to address the culture that trained them not to do that, or the literal decades of poor modifications to the ride, or the multiple previous incidents where the same thing had happened.

The Dreamworld angle pinned all the fault on the human element of the operations, which I find absolutely abhorrent, and entirely against the coroner's findings of the event.

I will make one positive comment about the TRRR piece though - and note that instead of sensationalising the operator as 'on her first day with 1 hour training' they played that down as simply 'newly\recently' trained.

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1 hour ago, Naazon said:

In the media, there is nothing to report on since "nothing" happened.

That is where the bias is a problem with this program.
Yes no physical injuries occurred, but can you imagine the mental scar on the people involved in that incident? It is just as important as physical.

Im not having a go at you Naazon, but I am just trying to highlight how flawed this program was. 
 

Add another one to the list, there wasn’t any mention of the helicopter crash at Sea World which killed. 
 

I can almost guarantee that village paid ransom money so to speak to be portrayed in a positive light. The cameras had access to Michael Croaker, they could have grilled him, However they chose to instead let him promote the parks he works for. 

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Helicopters aren't exclusive to theme parks. It wouldn't have fitted the narrative. If they focussed on everyday items that don't exist outside theme parks, then their subject matter gets diluted.

2 hours ago, TimmyG said:

I can almost guarantee that village paid ransom money so to speak to be portrayed in a positive light. The cameras had access to Michael Croaker, they could have grilled him, However they chose to instead let him promote the parks he works for. 

I can almost guarantee I can give you the winning lotto numbers, so to speak. 

That's a pretty bold claim bud. I'm not a big fan of some of his work, but the guy has been very successful in theme parks and entertainment. You're pretty narrow-sighted if you think he would have consented to an interview, on property, and allowed them to grill him. That doesn't mean that Village paid them off. If you've got anything beyond circumstantial evidence, i'd be interested in hearing it.

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Posted (edited)

'7News Spotlight - Ride Of Your Life' was watched by 571,000 viewers in the 5 major capital cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth & Adelaide) last night.

That data is based on a population sample representative of 62% of Australia's population.

Taking into account the 38% of regional viewers missing from that data, this should equate to 921,000 viewers of the program nationwide on Sunday night alone (Regional ratings are released on a weekly rather than daily basis so this is just a guess).

In the 5 major capital cities, these were where most viewers were from:

  1. Brisbane - 114,000 (4.6% of Brisbane's population)
  2. Adelaide - 58,000 (4.3% of Adelaide's population)
  3. Melbourne - 201,000 (4.0% of Melbourne's population)
  4. Total 5 major capital cities - 571,000 (3.6% of combined population of the 5 major capital cities)
  5. Perth - 60,000 (2.9% of Perth's population)
  6. Sydney - 138,000 (2.8% of Sydney's population)

Timeshifted ratings would be released over the next month which would give a better picture but at this stage, only a small percentage of the country would have seen the program so at this stage, the Australian theme park industry shouldn't be affected by the program.

Edited by Jamberoo Fan
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@TimmyG There's a really strange undercurrent here of 'They are beating up the whole industry' and 'They should have gone harder on Village' which doesn't make sense given Village were specifically mentioned and praised for their safety standards in the TRRR report. You're kidding yourself if you think the coroner didn't know about what went on with GL, yet still praised them. Demanding blood in the media just comes across as very strange, particualy when it's pretty well reported here and elsewhere that the GL train in question had just been refurbished by S&S and was properly maintained to S&S standards. It's a design fault from the manufacturer, not anything the park did.

 

If the report was about shoddy airline maintenance, you wouldn't be saying the media should focus on Lion Air because their 737 Max 8 crashed, and the reason you wouldn't is because it's totally unrelated to airline maintenance and has everything to do with a design flaw.

 

Personally I didn't watch the report, fucked if I'm contributing to the ratings of that shite.

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5 minutes ago, joz said:

Personally I didn't watch the report, fucked if I'm contributing to the ratings of that shite.

There's good sentiment in that, but it is hard to decry it as shite while simultaneously refusing to watch it. It's not to say you're wrong for your stance on it - but film critics have to watch the shit ones to truly appraise the appropriate level of sewage.

I said before it aired it'd be a hatchet piece. I even predicted some of the angles they'd take. I wasn't far off the mark - but I watched, so my opponents couldn't shut me down simply because I hadn't seen it (and despite the consensus today, i'll still watch the other half tonight).

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19 minutes ago, Jamberoo Fan said:

'7News Spotlight - Ride Of Your Life' was watched by 571,000 viewers in the 5 major capital cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth & Adelaide) last night.

That data is based on a population sample representative of 62% of Australia's population.

Taking into account the 38% of regional viewers missing from that data, this should equate to 921,000 viewers of the program nationwide on Sunday night alone (Regional ratings are released on a weekly rather than daily basis so this is just a guess).

In the 5 major capital cities, these were where most viewers were from:

  1. Brisbane - 114,000 (4.6% of Brisbane's population)
  2. Adelaide - 58,000 (4.3% of Adelaide's population)
  3. Melbourne - 201,000 (4.0% of Melbourne's population)
  4. Total 5 major capital cities - 571,000 (3.6% of combined population of the 5 major capital cities)
  5. Perth - 60,000 (2.9% of Perth's population)
  6. Sydney - 138,000 (2.8% of Sydney's population)

Timeshifted ratings would be released over the next month which would give a better picture but at this stage, only a small percentage of the country would have seen the program so at this stage, the Australian theme park industry shouldn't be affected by the program.

It's definitely some respite and further solidifies that the status of Seven's current affairs programming as the value range 60 Minutes is not changing any time soon.

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29 minutes ago, joz said:

@TimmyG There's a really strange undercurrent here of 'They are beating up the whole industry' and 'They should have gone harder on Village' which doesn't make sense given Village were specifically mentioned and praised for their safety standards in the TRRR report. You're kidding yourself if you think the coroner didn't know about what went on with GL, yet still praised them. Demanding blood in the media just comes across as very strange, particualy when it's pretty well reported here and elsewhere that the GL train in question had just been refurbished by S&S and was properly maintained to S&S standards. It's a design fault from the manufacturer, not anything the park did.

 

If the report was about shoddy airline maintenance, you wouldn't be saying the media should focus on Lion Air because their 737 Max 8 crashed, and the reason you wouldn't is because it's totally unrelated to airline maintenance and has everything to do with a design flaw.

 

Personally I didn't watch the report, fucked if I'm contributing to the ratings of that shite.

I agree with what you are saying, but the point is that if this was a fair and balanced report (which it wasn’t), Green Lantern should have been mentioned. Nobody cares if Dreamworld, some random company called S&S or Boeing built Green Lantern, the incident happened on their watch on their property, and it was probably the most significant incident prior to Thunder river Rapids in a long time. 

if a Qantas Plane has a near miss, regardless if it was a fault with the aircraft or pilot error, Qantas is the name people remember and care about, it’s only the enthusiasts that know it was an Airbus A380-211 that had a fault with its temp gauge which caused the issue. 

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1 hour ago, DaptoFunlandGuy said:

There's good sentiment in that, but it is hard to decry it as shite while simultaneously refusing to watch it.

Reality is my watching or not watching makes no difference to the ratinga, but I've been around too long to watch that sort of thing and I feel like the problem if I do. As a general rule, I try not to watch stuff which has an obvious bias to it, even if I agree with the bias.

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8 hours ago, Gazza said:

The show was basically a  sandwich, good stuff, bad stuff then good stuff.

The one thing I didn't mind about it is that normies in Australia now know about both Action Park and Cedar Point

image.thumb.png.dcffe1f9ced1efc01f9bd5598a144212.png

That's the annoying thing - it felt completely misleading. The good bits started out good. We talk about some of the history of theme parks and even go to Luna Park. Look, here's Cedar Point in Ohio at about 10 minutes in. Cool place. But did you know people died elsewhere in Ohio, at a completely unrelated fairground? And at this place? And here, and here? And there's so many accidents we'll even make fun of it later on? But in the end, we can write a 5 minute conclusion and say theme parks are cool.

When I wrote essays in school, we were told we had to write an introduction, body (discussing both sides), and conclusion. With this, it's like the body is about a completely different topic - same subject matter, but different topic - and only discusses one side.

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10 hours ago, Gazza said:

The show was basically a  sandwich, good stuff, bad stuff then good stuff.

2 hours ago, djmcbell said:

When I wrote essays in school, we were told we had to write an introduction, body (discussing both sides), and conclusion. With this, it's like the body is about a completely different topic - same subject matter, but different topic - and only discusses one side.

On 07/06/2021 at 2:25 AM, Aw hype said:

All in all, considering the doco promoted itself as an unprecedented look into an otherwise unseen industry, i was quite disappointed but not surprised to see it manifest into the shanty fear mongering campaign and misrepresentation of an already struggling industry in Australia that it was.

Do a bit of proper journalism. Provide an objective and respectful representation of a topic. And-most importantly-just be better.

0/5 for immoral and improper journalism.

^These comments sum up my take on the program. There were some good bits, narrative was all over the place, and some facts were not represented truthfully.

Edited by Luke
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It was the greatest piece of shit disguises as journalism I’ve ever seen…

but at the same time that could just be the tagline of Spotlight as a whole. 

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