Placeholder Content Image

New photos of Cleo Smith show insight into her life after kidnapping

<p>Almost three years after being abducted from a campsite, heartwarming new photos show how Cleo Smith is living as a happy school girl and big sister. </p> <p>In October 2021, Cleo Smith, who was four years old at the time, made international headlines after she was snatched from a campsite as she slept alongside her mother, stepfather and baby sister at the Blowholes campsite, about 960km north of Perth, Western Australia.</p> <p>A state-wide police operation was launched in search for Cleo, who was four years old at the time, which led to her dramatic rescue 18 days later.</p> <p>Now, almost three years after the horrific abduction and intense media scrutiny, Cleo, who is now seven years old, is adjusting to a normal life. </p> <p>A collection of photos, shared to Instagram by <em>60 Minutes</em>, showed a beaming Cleo enjoying life with her family, as one photo showed Cleo smiling along with her mother, Ellie Smith, stepdad Jake Gliddon, and little sister, Isla.</p> <p>The snapshots revealed happy moments of young Cleo's life, including a family fishing trip, Isla's first birthday, her seventh birthday and the sisters' first day at school in 2024.</p> <p>"Cleo Smith, all grown up. The seven-year-old is enjoying life in Western Australia, loving school and being a big sister to Isla," <em>60 Minutes</em> wrote.</p> <p>The photos received an overwhelming response from social media users all around the world, with many sharing well wishes for the family and for Cleo. </p> <p>"Beautiful to see the family so happy and healthy," one person wrote. </p> <p>"Bless your heart, so glad you are living your best life," another person commented. </p> <p>A third person wrote, "It's so good to see her happy! I followed her story from Argentina. Keep enjoying life Cleo!"</p> <p><em>Image credits: 60 Minutes / Instagram </em></p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Today show star's replacement revealed

<p>Brooke Boney's replacement on the <em>Today</em> show has been announced. </p> <p>The reporter announced on-air in March that she was quitting to pursue her studies at Oxford University in the UK. </p> <p>On Tuesday, Nine’s director of morning television Steven Burling announced that current <em>Weekend Today</em> co-host, Jayne Azzopardi, will move to weekdays to cover the news round for <em>Today.</em></p> <p>“We’re thrilled to welcome Jayne Azzopardi, one of Nine’s most accomplished journalists, to Today in the news chair,” he said in a statement. </p> <p>“Jayne has covered politics in Canberra, reported on major news events, and co-hosted <em>Weekend Today.</em>"</p> <p>Celebrity interviewer Renee Bargh will also have a boosted role on the breakfast TV show, and will cover the entertainment round alongside Richard Wilkins. </p> <p>“Joining her is Renee Bargh, known for her career at Channel [V] and as a correspondent for EXTRA in LA, to cover the entertainment round alongside Dickie," Burling added. </p> <p>“We’re privileged to have Jayne and Renee join our team at Today.”</p> <p>While Boney has yet to announce her final day on-air, she previously said that she will be leaving the show after the Olympics, which is being broadcast on Nine from July 26 to August 11. </p> <p>“I’ve been offered a place at Oxford University later this year, which means I’ll be leaving the show after the Olympics,” Boney said on-air in March.</p> <p>While she didn't go into too much detail she added: “It’s been a dream of mine to be able to study at an overseas university, and it just felt like the right time to take that step."</p> <p><em>Images: Nine</em></p>

TV

Placeholder Content Image

Why do dogs have different coats? Experts explain – and give grooming tips for different types

<div class="theconversation-article-body"> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/susan-hazel-402495">Susan Hazel</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-adelaide-1119">University of Adelaide</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/mia-cobb-15211">Mia Cobb</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-melbourne-722">The University of Melbourne</a></em></p> <p>Dog hair comes in many varieties, from shaggy to short, curly to straight. If you live with a dog, you live with their hair – on your couch, in your clothes, it’s everywhere!</p> <p>Beyond colour, have you ever wondered what’s behind the differences in coat type?</p> <p>We actually know quite a lot about why dogs have different coats, and it comes down to their genes.</p> <h2>What are the main coat types in dogs?</h2> <p>The three main features of dog coats are how long the hairs are, whether they are curly or straight, and whether they have extra flourishes. The flourishes are called “furnishings”, and can include a hairy moustache and shaggy eyebrows.</p> <p>Combinations of these three features result in seven different coat types in dogs: short, wire, wire and curly, long, long with furnishings, curly, and curly with furnishings.</p> <p>We know from a <a href="https://www.science.org/doi/abs/10.1126/science.1177808">study of more than 1,000 dogs with varying coats</a> that differences in only three genes are responsible for this variety.</p> <p>The gene responsible for long hair (called FGF5) is <a href="https://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/basics/patterns">recessive</a>, meaning dogs must have two copies of the mutated gene to have long hair. <a href="https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1402862111">In humans</a>, the same gene has been identified in families with excessively long eyelashes.</p> <p>Curly coats in dogs are related to a gene called <a href="https://www.pawprintgenetics.com/products/tests/details/173/">KRT71</a>, which affects keratin, a protein involved in hair formation. <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2974189/">Mutations in this gene</a> in cats result in hairless (Sphynx) or curly-haired (Devon Rex) breeds.</p> <p>The gene responsible for furnishings (<a href="https://medlineplus.gov/genetics/gene/rspo2/">RSPO2</a>) is involved in establishing hair follicles. <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health/hair-follicle">Hair follicles</a> are small pockets in the skin that grow hair.</p> <p>Variations in these three genes could explain the coat type in most (but not all!) of the dogs tested. For example, the long coat of the Afghan hound is not explained by these three genes. Further study is needed to identify less common mutations and genes controlling the coat in these dogs.</p> <p>The earliest dog breeds would have been short-haired, as a result of the “wild-type” genes. Later changes would have arisen through mutation and deliberate selection <a href="https://theconversation.com/managing-mutations-of-a-species-the-evolution-of-dog-breeding-96635">through modern breeding practices</a>.</p> <p>If all three mutations are present, the dog has a long, curly coat with furnishings. An example is the Bichon Frisé.</p> <h2>What else varies in dog coats?</h2> <p>Dog coat types can also be single or double. In a double-coated breed such as a Labrador, there is a longer coarse layer of hairs and a softer and shorter undercoat. Wolves and ancestral dogs are single-coated, and the double coat is a result of a <a href="https://www.mdpi.com/2073-4425/10/5/323">mutation in chromosome 28</a>.</p> <p>In the Labrador, the mutation was probably selected for as they were bred to <a href="https://www.gov.nl.ca/releases/2023/exec/0525n07/">retrieve fishing nets in Canada</a>. The double coat is a great insulator and helps them to stay warm, even in icy water.</p> <h2>Why does it matter what kind of coat a dog has?</h2> <p>We know with climate change our world is going to get hotter. Dogs with a double coat are less able to tolerate heat stress, as their hair prevents heat loss.</p> <p>In a study of dogs <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/avj.13296">suffering heat-related illness</a>, most of the 15 breeds at higher risk had double coats. The death rate in these dogs was 23%. We can only imagine how it must feel going out on a 40 degree day wearing a thick fur coat.</p> <p>Dogs with a double coat shed more hair than dogs with a single coat. This means even short-haired breeds, like the Labrador retriever, can shed an astonishing amount of hair. If you can’t tolerate dog hair, then a dog with a double-coat may not suit you.</p> <p>When we think of wool we think of sheep, but in the past <a href="https://www.si.edu/stories/woolly-dog-mystery-unlocked">woolly dogs were kept for their wool</a> that was <a href="https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.adi6549">woven by Indigenous groups</a> and used to make blankets.</p> <p>A dog’s coat also affects how much time and effort is needed for grooming. Dogs with long or curly hair with furnishings are likely to need more time invested in their care, or visits to a professional groomer.</p> <p>Designer dogs (cross-bred dogs often crossed with a poodle, such as groodles), are likely to be curly with furnishings. In a US study, people with designer dogs reported meeting their dogs’ maintenance and grooming requirements was <a href="https://www.mdpi.com/2076-2615/12/23/3247">much harder than they expected</a>.</p> <p>It’s not just bank balances and the time needed that can suffer. If people are unable to cope with the demands of grooming long-haired dogs, lack of grooming can cause welfare problems. A study of animal cruelty cases in New York found <a href="https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fvets.2022.827348/full">13% involved hair matting</a>, with some hair mats causing strangulation wounds and 93% of affected dogs having long hair.</p> <h2>How can you prevent problems?</h2> <p>If you have a curly- or long-haired breed of dog, it will help to train them to like being brushed from an early age. You can do this by counter-conditioning so they have a positive emotional response to being groomed, rather than feeling anxious. First show the brush or lightly brush them, then give them a treat. They learn to associate being brushed with something positive.</p> <p>If you take your dog to the groomer, it’s very important their first experience is positive. A scary or painful incident will make it much more difficult for future grooming.</p> <p>Is your dog difficult to groom or hard to get out of the car at the groomers? It’s likely grooming is scary for them. Consulting a dog trainer or animal behaviourist who focuses on positive training methods can help a lot.</p> <p>Keeping your dog well groomed, no matter their hair type, will keep them comfortable. More important than looking great, feeling good is an essential part of dogs living their best lives with us.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232480/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/susan-hazel-402495">Susan Hazel</a>, Associate Professor, School of Animal and Veterinary Science, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-adelaide-1119">University of Adelaide</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/mia-cobb-15211">Mia Cobb</a>, Research Fellow, Animal Welfare Science Centre, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-melbourne-722">The University of Melbourne</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/why-do-dogs-have-different-coats-experts-explain-and-give-grooming-tips-for-different-types-232480">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Today Show entertainment reporter's cause of death revealed

<p>Beloved <em>Today</em> show and KTLA entertainment reporter Sam Rubin's cause of death has been revealed, two months after his sudden <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/health/caring/legendary-today-show-reporter-dies-unexpectedly" target="_blank" rel="noopener">passing</a>. </p> <p>The 64-year-old died in May with a new report from medical officials finding he died from a heart attack after he suffered a massive blockage to his coronary artery. </p> <p>Just hours after hosting his Hollywood news segment in the morning of May 10th, Rubin was rushed to home after collapsing in his Los Angeles home. </p> <p>The multi-Emmy Award winner was a renowned figure in the news industry on the West Coast, and had covered entertainment, movies and TV for KTLA since 1991.</p> <p>He was also well-known in Australia as a contributor to Channel Nine's <em>Today</em> show and <em>Today Extra</em>, and in the UK where he appeared on <em>This Morning</em>.</p> <p>Following his death, Karl Stefanovic paid tribute to his colleague on Instagram, saying he "adored every second with Sam on air and off over the past two decades".</p> <p>"His spirit. His laugh. His warm caring nature. He was a beautiful man. What a loss. All love to his family, and to his TV family at KTLA5 News."</p> <p><em>Today Extra</em> host David Campbell also paid tribute to Rubin, calling him a "Hollywood great".</p> <p>"He had an encyclopaedic knowledge of the industry," Campbell posted on social media.</p> <p>"For years we would cross to him and gossip and laugh," he said.</p> <p>"He would visit us Down Under, and whenever you were in LA you had to catch up. His loss is profound. My love and condolences to his family whom he adored."</p> <p style="font-size: 16px; box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 1rem; caret-color: #212529; color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji';">"Also his KTLA team who have lost a brother. We will cross back to you some other time Sam."</p> <p><em>Image credits: Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock Editorial </em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

Winner of the World's Ugliest Dog Contest announced

<p>The annual World's Ugliest Dog contest has unearthed some true diamonds in the ruff, with one long-tongued frizz-ball being honoured with the title of the ugliest dog in the world. </p> <p>At the Sonoma-Marin Fair in Petaluma, California, an eight-year-old Pekingese called Wild Thang was crowned the winner and collected the $5,000 cash prize, after failing to take home the prize five years in a row. </p> <p>"He was a fan favorite … he's kind of like the bridesmaid and never the bride," judge Fiona Ma told the <em>Associated Press</em>.</p> <p>"He really tugged at our heart strings and deserved to win."</p> <p>Wild Thang's strange looks stem from a virus he contracted as a puppy that almost killed him, but instead left him with permanent damage.</p> <p>As a result, his teeth never developed, so his tongue flops out, and his right front leg paddles all the time.</p> <p>"He's never had a hair cut so that is the way he is and [his owner] shaves his stomach and he likes to sleep on ice packs," Ma added.</p> <p>"He is just a sweet dog – I was just holding him and he loves to be held and cuddled. That's part of it, these rescue dogs, they just need forever homes, so please adopt, don't shop."</p> <p>Organisers stressed that the contest is not about making fun of the unusual looking dogs, "but having fun with some wonderful characters and showing the world that these dogs are really beautiful!"</p> <p><em>Image credits: JOHN G MABANGLO/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock Editorial </em></p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Walking can prevent low back pain, a new study shows

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tash-pocovi-1293184">Tash Pocovi</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/christine-lin-346821">Christine Lin</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/mark-hancock-1463059">Mark Hancock</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/petra-graham-892602">Petra Graham</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/simon-french-713564">Simon French</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a></em></p> <p>Do you suffer from low back pain that recurs regularly? If you do, you’re not alone. Roughly <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31208917/">70% of people</a> who recover from an episode of low back pain will experience a new episode in the following year.</p> <p>The recurrent nature of low back pain is a major contributor to the <a href="https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanrhe/article/PIIS2665-9913(23)00098-X/fulltext">enormous burden</a> low back pain places on individuals and the health-care system.</p> <p>In our new study, published today in <a href="https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(24)00755-4/fulltext">The Lancet</a>, we found that a program combining walking and education can effectively reduce the recurrence of low back pain.</p> <h2>The WalkBack trial</h2> <p>We randomly assigned 701 adults who had recently recovered from an episode of low back pain to receive an individualised walking program and education (intervention), or to a no treatment group (control).</p> <p>Participants in the intervention group were guided by physiotherapists across six sessions, over a six-month period. In the first, third and fifth sessions, the physiotherapist helped each participant to develop a personalised and progressive walking program that was realistic and tailored to their specific needs and preferences.</p> <p>The remaining sessions were short check-ins (typically less than 15 minutes) to monitor progress and troubleshoot any potential barriers to engagement with the walking program. Due to the COVID pandemic, most participants received the entire intervention via telehealth, using video consultations and phone calls.</p> <p>The program was designed to be manageable, with a target of five walks per week of roughly 30 minutes daily by the end of the six-month program. Participants were also encouraged to continue walking independently after the program.</p> <p>Importantly, the walking program was combined with education provided by the physiotherapists during the six sessions. This education aimed to give people a better understanding of pain, reduce fear associated with exercise and movement, and give people the confidence to self-manage any minor recurrences if they occurred.</p> <p>People in the control group received no preventative treatment or education. This reflects what <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2468781222001308?via%3Dihub">typically occurs</a> after people recover from an episode of low back pain and are discharged from care.</p> <h2>What the results showed</h2> <p>We monitored the participants monthly from the time they were enrolled in the study, for up to three years, to collect information about any new recurrences of low back pain they may have experienced. We also asked participants to report on any costs related to their back pain, including time off work and the use of health-care services.</p> <p>The intervention reduced the risk of a recurrence of low back pain that limited daily activity by 28%, while the recurrence of low back pain leading participants to seek care from a health professional decreased by 43%.</p> <p>Participants who received the intervention had a longer average period before they had a recurrence, with a median of 208 days pain-free, compared to 112 days in the control group.</p> <p>Overall, we also found this intervention to be cost-effective. The biggest savings came from less work absenteeism and less health service use (such as physiotherapy and massage) among the intervention group.</p> <p>This trial, like all studies, had some limitations to consider. Although we tried to recruit a wide sample, we found that most participants were female, aged between 43 and 66, and were generally well educated. This may limit the extent to which we can generalise our findings.</p> <p>Also, in this trial, we used physiotherapists who were up-skilled in health coaching. So we don’t know whether the intervention would achieve the same impact if it were to be delivered by other clinicians.</p> <h2>Walking has multiple benefits</h2> <p>We’ve all heard the saying that “prevention is better than a cure” – and it’s true. But this approach has been largely neglected when it comes to low back pain. Almost all <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0140673618304896?via%3Dihub">previous studies</a> have focused on treating episodes of pain, not preventing future back pain.</p> <p>A limited number of <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26752509/">small studies</a> have shown that exercise and education can help prevent low back pain. However, most of these studies focused on exercises that are not accessible to everyone due to factors such as high cost, complexity, and the need for supervision from health-care or fitness professionals.</p> <p>On the other hand, walking is a free, accessible way to exercise, including for people in rural and remote areas with limited access to health care.</p> <p>Walking also delivers many other <a href="https://www.vichealth.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/VH_Benefits-of-Walking-Summary2020.pdf">health benefits</a>, including better heart health, improved mood and sleep quality, and reduced risk of several chronic diseases.</p> <p>While walking is not everyone’s favourite form of exercise, the intervention was well-received by most people in our study. Participants <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/37271689/">reported</a> that the additional general health benefits contributed to their ongoing motivation to continue the walking program independently.</p> <h2>Why is walking helpful for low back pain?</h2> <p>We don’t know exactly why walking is effective for preventing back pain, but <a href="https://www.e-jer.org/journal/view.php?number=2013600295">possible reasons</a> could include the combination of gentle movements, loading and strengthening of the spinal structures and muscles. It also could be related to relaxation and stress relief, and the release of “feel-good” endorphins, which <a href="https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/body/23040-endorphins">block pain signals</a> between your body and brain – essentially turning down the dial on pain.</p> <p>It’s possible that other accessible and low-cost forms of exercise, such as swimming, may also be effective in preventing back pain, but surprisingly, <a href="https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34783263/">no studies</a> have investigated this.</p> <p>Preventing low back pain is not easy. But these findings give us hope that we are getting closer to a solution, one step at a time.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/231682/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/tash-pocovi-1293184">Tash Pocovi</a>, Postdoctoral research fellow, Department of Health Sciences, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/christine-lin-346821">Christine Lin</a>, Professor, Institute for Musculoskeletal Health, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/mark-hancock-1463059">Mark Hancock</a>, Professor of Physiotherapy, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/petra-graham-892602">Petra Graham</a>, Associate Professor, School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/simon-french-713564">Simon French</a>, Professor of Musculoskeletal Disorders, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/macquarie-university-1174">Macquarie University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/walking-can-prevent-low-back-pain-a-new-study-shows-231682">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Body

Placeholder Content Image

Worrying pattern of cancellations shows Australian TV's grim future

<p>As the future of free-to-air Australian television continues to be more and more "uncertain", a worrying pattern of dozens of cancelled programs show how the industry has been in trouble for quite some time. </p> <p>In recent years, dozens of seemingly popular shows have been axed across three major networks with thousands of people across the industry preparing themselves for further cancellations, pay cuts, job losses and career changes.</p> <p>According to <a href="https://au.lifestyle.yahoo.com/exclusive-34-axed-aussie-shows-revealed-as-future-of-free-to-air-tv-uncertain-224725084.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Yahoo Lifestyle</em></a>, 34 shows across Seven, Nine and Ten have either been axed, put on an indefinite hiatus, or quietly removed from TV schedules with no mention of it again over the last five years. </p> <p>Many Aussie TV staples such as <em>Millionaire Hot Seat</em>, <em>The Bachelor</em>, and <em>Australian Ninja Warrior</em>, which were all once the highest rated shows on television, have been binned due to declining viewership and dwindling ratings. </p> <p>Channel Ten's <em>The Masked Singer</em> has also become a casualty in the TV wars, as host Dave Hughes <a href="https://oversixty.com.au/entertainment/tv/hughesy-spills-the-beans-on-major-shows-set-to-be-axed" target="_blank" rel="noopener">shared</a> that he simply hadn't received a production schedule for the new season of the show, only to discover it had been shelved. </p> <p>In an attempt to breathe new life into the channels, newer shows like Shaynna Blaze’s <em>Country Home Rescue</em> or Kate Langbroek’s <em>My Mum, Your Dad</em> premiered, but have only survived for single seasons after failing to grab an audience. </p> <p>Even revived classics like <em>Big Brother</em>, <em>Celebrity Apprentice</em> and <em><a href="https://oversixty.com.au/entertainment/tv/channel-10-axes-another-show-amid-ratings-crisis" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Gladiators</a></em> haven’t been able to survive as they now face growing competition from streaming giants like Netflix and Stan.</p> <p>As the list of cancelled shows continues to grow, one seasoned lighting director, who asked to remain anonymous, told Yahoo Lifestyle that job insecurity for casts and crews is a major concern. </p> <p>They said, “Every year the breaks between jobs are getting longer and longer to the point a lot of us (crew) are now leaving the industry. Ten years ago we’d be booked consistently with jobs locked in 12 months in advance for all of the networks, now everyone’s scrambling to try to get on a three-day pilot shoot. Everything is so uncertain.”</p> <p>Below are all of the free-to-air shows from the last five years that haven’t been renewed.</p> <p id="channel-seven"><strong>Channel Seven</strong></p> <p>Big Brother (2001-2008, 2012-2014, 2020-2023)</p> <p>SAS Australia (2020-2023)</p> <p>This Is Your Life (1975-1980, 1995-2005, 2008, 2011, 2022-2023)</p> <p>Blow Up (2023)</p> <p>Million Dollar Island (2023)</p> <p>We Interrupt This Broadcast (2023)</p> <p>The Voice: Generations (2022)</p> <p>Big Brother VIP (2021)</p> <p>Holey Moley (2021)</p> <p>Ultimate Tag (2021)</p> <p>Wife Swap Australia (2012, 2021)</p> <p>House Rules (2013-2020)</p> <p>Plate of Origin (2020)</p> <p>Pooch Perfect (2020)</p> <p id="channel-nine"><strong>Channel Nine</strong></p> <p>Millionaire Hot Seat (2009–2023)</p> <p>My Mum, Your Dad (2022-2023)</p> <p>The Beach House Escape (2023)</p> <p>Rush (2023)</p> <p>Snackmasters (2021-2022)</p> <p>Australian Ninja Warrior (2017-2022)</p> <p>Beauty and the Geek (2009-2014, 2021-2022)</p> <p>Celebrity Apprentice (2011-2015, 2021-2022)</p> <p>Country Homes Rescue (2022)</p> <p>This Time Next Year (2017-2019)</p> <p>Australia’s Most Identical</p> <p id="channel-ten"><strong>Channel Ten</strong></p> <p>Gladiators (1995-1996, 2008, 2024)</p> <p>The Bachelor (2013-2023)</p> <p>Studio 10 (2013-2023)</p> <p>The Masked Singer (2019-2023)</p> <p>The Traitors (2022-2023)</p> <p>Would I Lie To You? Australia (2022-2023)</p> <p>The Real Love Boat (2022)</p> <p>The Bachelorette (2015-2021)</p> <p>Bachelor In Paradise (2018-2020)</p> <p><em>Image credits: Ten / Seven </em></p>

TV

Placeholder Content Image

"No fan of mine": Kyle Sandilands shocked on air by brutal John Blackman audio

<p>Kyle Sandilands was paying tribute to his “childhood hero” <em>Hey Hey it's Saturday </em>star John Blackman on-air Thursday morning, when he was interrupted by an audio of the late star trashing him in a recent interview. </p> <p>Speaking on the Kyle and Jackie O Show, the shock jock said he was upset when he learned of <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/australia-is-a-sadder-place-shock-as-john-blackman-s-death-confirmed" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Blackman's passing</a>, but before he was able to elaborate on how the radio star was his childhood hero, his manager Bruno Bouchet interjected and told him about Blackman's brutal review. </p> <p>In a May interview on the <em>You Cannot Be Serious</em> podcast, Blackman said: “Why are we giving these two publicity hungry, oxygen thieves, waste of oxygen. The man [Sandilands] is a no talent. He doesn’t have a voice for radio, by the way.”</p> <p>Footage of Sandilands listening to the audio for the first time was shared by <em>KIIS FM</em> on their Instagram stories, and both he and Henderson were shocked. </p> <p>“I’m very confused,” Sandilands said, before coming to the conclusion that  Blackman wasn’t a fan of him because he’s not as polished as “old school” media veterans.</p> <p>“What’s happened here is old school media, TV, radio, newspapers. They’re all fake,” he said.</p> <p>“They pretend everything’s wonderful. You never really know the real person." </p> <p>He then elaborated and said that he and Henderson try to keep it real with their listeners. </p> <p>“We don’t pretend it’s a wonderful day. Even though it’s p*ssing with rain and snowing or whatever. We don’t pretend. We say, ‘Oh, what a s**t day.’ We’re just a different breed.</p> <p>“Oh well, that’s one hero of mine that’s dead. No fan of mine.”</p> <p><em>Images: Instagram</em></p>

Music

Placeholder Content Image

Common mistakes pet owners make

<p>While most pet owners have the best of intentions, sometimes not everyone is aware of the mistakes they are making or the things they could be doing better. Here’s a list of common mistakes pet owners make. How many are you guilty of?</p> <p><strong>Lack of exercise</strong><br />While each breed and species is different in reference to their specific exercise needs, one thing stays the same: every animal requires daily exercise. When working out what is the correct amount for your animal, you need to look at their age, species and breed.</p> <p>And before you go thinking of daily exercise at a chore, remember this: exercise should be fun! It can include play time, walks, jogs, runs, agility training and more. Always consult with your local vet if you want to know the specific exercise guidelines for your pet.</p> <p><strong>No behavioural training</strong><br />When bringing a new animal into your home and family, adequate training is so important. Does your animal know how to take commands? It’s important to be able to teach your pet things and that they respect you.</p> <p>Remember the saying: You can’t teach an old dog new tricks? Well, that’s right. Investing the time to go through behavioural training from the start will help save you time and frustration in the long run.</p> <p><strong>Your pet is bored often</strong><br />Just like humans, pets too get bored. Playing games with your furry friend – such as teaching them tricks or providing them with the toys and space to do interesting things – will do wonders in ensuring their mind is constantly developed.</p> <p>If your pet is stimulated, it should stop them from destroying the house, and your things, when you’re out.</p> <p><strong>Poorly looked after teeth</strong><br />A common mistake a lot of pet owners make, is not brushing often enough – or at all – their pet’s teeth. After all, dental hygiene is one of the most important health issues animals face. The good news is this is avoidable by regularly brushing your pet’s teeth and checking on their oral hygiene.</p> <p>Anything out of the ordinary may be an indication of infection, but when caught early, can be more easily treated. So ensure you book in regular visits at the vet to check your furry friend’s mouth too.</p> <p><strong>Not enough trips to the vet</strong><br />Just as it is important for humans to go to the dentist and doctor for check-ups and shots regularly, visiting the vet and keeping up with a vaccination schedule is equally as important.</p> <p>If not more so, as pets cannot tell you when something is wrong. Booking into to see the vet every so often will ensure your pet is healthy and blossoming for years to come. </p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Today show star and veteran doctor dies at age 69

<p>A veteran doctor and regular guest on the <em>Today</em> show Dr Ric Gordon has passed away at the age of 69 from pancreatic cancer. </p> <p>Known for sharing his expertise as an obstetrician and fertility specialist, Dr Gordon became a household name after he delivered the first baby on Australian television. </p> <p>Upon hearing of his death, veteran radio host and beloved Australian author Wendy Harmer revealed Dr Gordon delivered both her babies even after she and her partner dropped out of IVF.</p> <p>In a post on X, she wrote, “He was a pioneer in IVF in Australia and gave hope to so many... and was kind and caring professional. Vale.”</p> <p>Nine News confirmed the “sad news” of Dr Gordon’s passing from pancreatic cancer on Saturday, as presenter Georgie Gardner said “he will be deeply missed”.</p> <p>Professionally known as Dr Ric Porter, he had previously hosted Nine’s long-running lifestyle hit <em>Good Medicine</em>, which ran for nine years in the 1990s. </p> <p>Dr Gordon was a part of the team of doctors who delivered the first IVF birth in NSW in 1983, and during his career, he delivered more than 5000 babies, including in 2003 when he safely delivered a baby live on the <em>Today</em> show.</p> <p>Reflecting on the moment in 2022, Dr Gordon told <em>Today</em> viewers it was an extraordinary moment in television.</p> <p>“It went so well, it was a great morning and a good outcome,” he said. “The baby cried when it was meant to cry, mum and dad were happy."</p> <p>The well-known doctor also drew some controversy over his career, including an offensive analogy where he used the Holocaust to explain weight loss on the same breakfast TV program in 2015. </p> <p>Despite apologising for saying “there were no overweight people in the concentration camps”, his apology was dismissed by many for being “insufficient” and “unsatisfactory”.</p> <p>Dr Gordon said at the time, “I’m very sorry it upset those people. It was never my intention.”</p> <p>He added that he had “done a lot of study” on the Holocaust and his comments were merely “used as a medical example”.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Today </em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

Channel 10 axes another show amid ratings crisis

<p>Channel 10 has decided to axe yet another popular show as they continue to grapple with declining ratings and viewers leaving. </p> <p>Following the cancellation of <em>The Bachelors </em>and <em>The Masked Singer</em>, <a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-13449749/Channel-10-axes-amid-ratings-crisis-revealed-Channel-Seven-considering-saving-unlikely-series.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Daily Mail Australia</em></a> reported that the network was also cancelling <em>Gladiators</em>. </p> <p>Despite the show's success in the UK, the Australian reboot struggled to find the same effect as they failed to sustain their initial viewership. </p> <p>The show produced by Warner Bros and hosted by Beau Ryan and Liz Ellis was launched with high hopes and attracted 395,000 metro viewers during its premiere. </p> <p>However, by the second episode the numbers plummeted to just 196,000 - over half of the initial viewership. </p> <p>Critics on social media were also quick to point out the lack of crowd presence, despite the show being filmed under normal conditions, with one person saying: "It felt like watching an event without any real energy."</p> <p>The Traitors is another the show that was axed by the network after just two seasons, and now an insider has revealed that Channel Seven is considering commissioning the series.</p> <p>"The show's concept has potential, but it needs a fresh approach and a new platform," the insider told <em>Daily Mail Australia</em>. </p> <p>They also shared what's in store for Channel 10 as they attempt to revive their ratings. </p> <p>"Channel 10 is now deciding to put all their eggs in one basket, planning to roll out not one, but two seasons of Australian Survivor in 2025," the insider said. </p> <p>"They are putting together a 10th season special as well as an Australia vs USA Survivor all-star showdown which will be screened simultaneously in America and Down Under."</p> <p>A Channel 10 executive said: "Survivor has consistently performed well for us, and we believe this new approach will reignite audience interest."</p> <p>The <em>Daily Mail</em> reported that they have contacted Channel Seven and 10 for a comment. </p> <p><em>Image: Ten</em></p>

TV

Placeholder Content Image

"SHEER INSANITY": Dog owner slammed over bizarre request

<p>A cat owner was left purr-plexed after receiving a bizarre note from her neighbour about her cats. </p> <p>She took to Facebook to share the "unhinged" letter, racking up over 15,000 comments from other people who were furious on her behalf. </p> <p>"Hey neighbour! Can you please keep your cats out of the window?" the letter read. </p> <p>"They are causing my dog to sit in the window and bark all day long."</p> <p>The anonymous letter ended abruptly with: "I work from home so this is very difficult, thanks, K."</p> <p>The cat owner said  that she has three cats and two new kittens in her house, and although they occasionally sit on the window when it's a nice outside, they "do nothing but sleep." </p> <p>"We keep the windows open because we don’t have aircon yet," she added.</p> <p>The dog owner had barked up the wrong tree, as many commenters slammed them for their "entitled" behaviour. </p> <p>"Tell them to train the dog," one said, echoing the thoughts of many. </p> <p>"LMAO, you cannot stop a cat from sitting in a window. Cats will find a way, but you can absolutely do a number of things to stop a dog from barking at a window," another added. </p> <p>"This can’t be real. What a crazy neighbour," a third wrote. </p> <p> "I’m totally a dog person, but trying to make your neighbour discipline their cat for sitting in a window because you won’t discipline your dog for nuisance barking is SHEER INSANITY. I mean, what the hell?" a fellow dog owner added. </p> <p>"Train your cat not to chill in a window because training a dog not to disturb the s*** out of everyone is too hard? I can’t believe this neighbour had the nerve."</p> <p>"Imagine being so entitled that you think it’s someone else’s responsibility to control your pet’s behaviour," another wrote. </p> <p>Another person pointed out: "If ‘your dog’ is barking when they look out the window, then cover 'your window'." </p> <p><em>Image: Facebook</em></p> <p> </p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Legendary Today show reporter dies unexpectedly

<p>Legendary entertainment reporter Sam Rubin has died unexpectedly after reportedly suffering a heart attack at the age of 64. </p> <p>According to TMZ, the incident occurred at his Los Angeles home, shortly after Rubin presented his regular segment on US TV network KTLA’s <em>7-9 a.m. Morning News</em> program. </p> <p>The reporter worked for LA TV station KTLA as their entertainment reporter, and also regularly worked with Aussie programs <em>Today</em> and <em>Today Extra</em>.</p> <p>KTLA confirmed Rubin's death in a statement, saying, “KTLA 5 is profoundly saddened to report the death of Sam Rubin."</p> <p>"Sam was a giant in the local news industry and the entertainment world, and a fixture of Los Angeles morning television for decades,” the statement read. </p> <p>“His laugh, charm and caring personality touched all who knew him. Sam was a loving husband and father: the roles he cherished the most."</p> <p>"Our thoughts are with Sam’s family during this difficult time.”</p> <p>Karl Stefanovic paid tribute to his colleague on Instagram, saying he "adored every second with Sam on air and off over the past two decades".</p> <p>"His spirit. His laugh. His warm caring nature. He was a beautiful man. What a loss. All love to his family, and to his TV family at KTLA5 News."</p> <p><em>Today Extra</em> host David Campbell also paid tribute to Rubin, calling him a "Hollywood great".</p> <p>"He had an encyclopaedic knowledge of the industry," Campbell posted on social media.</p> <p>"For years we would cross to him and gossip and laugh," he said.</p> <p>"He would visit us Down Under, and whenever you were in LA you had to catch up. His loss is profound. My love and condolences to his family whom he adored."</p> <p>"Also his KTLA team who have lost a brother. We will cross back to you some other time Sam."</p> <p>On <em>Weekend Today</em>, Richard Wilkins expressed his sadness at Rubin's passing, while also remembering fond memories of working together. </p> <p>“The entertainment world has really lost one of its greatest colleagues and dear friends today,” Wilkins said.</p> <p>“For the last 20-odd years he’s been a member of our family, mainly through the Today show and Today Extra … but whenever the big stories broke, Sam was our go-to guy."</p> <p>“And those beautiful people that he works with, they will be absolutely gutted today, obviously he brought this immense knowledge of the entertainment industry, but he brought this immense warmth as well.”</p> <p><em>Image credits: Instagram</em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

Adorable Collie sells for world record-breaking price

<p>A border collie has been sold for a world record-breaking amount at the Ray White Rockhampton Working Dog Sale and Trial.</p> <p>Helen and James Parker paid $40,000 for Liz, a border collie who they describe as the "whole package". </p> <p>The couple, who run a wagyu cattle farm in Monto, Queensland are keen to welcome the pup who will help them muster cattle as part of the day-to-day running of the farm. </p> <p>"We leave in the morning early, they might do three to four hours mustering in the morning, then we get the cattle to the yard and then in the afternoon we'll walk them away," Helen said.</p> <p>"Our mustering round's about a week, so all day for a week, so some big days and it's hot up here in summer so they need to be able to travel and follow us on a horse and big days in hot conditions so we can't do the job without them."</p> <p>Liz, who was raised by Joe Leven, is the second dog the couple have purchased from Joe, and they say the price was worth it. </p> <p>"We weren't planning on breaking records but we're happy to have her," Helen told 2GB's Ben Fordham.</p> <p>"She's the whole package, she's got breeding behind her, she has all herding ability, natural instinct. I just think she's a great asset to our team."</p> <p>Although Liz is an unusual name for a cattle dog, it is actually a tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth.</p> <p>"Joe named them and there's a bit of a story behind how Liz got her name. She was born the year that Queen Elizabeth passed away, so she's really upheld her name, she's the queen," Helen explained.</p> <p>The Rockhampton Working Dog trial and Sale was a success for Joe and Cabra Glebe Working Dogs, who managed to sell another dog, Jenny for $38,000. </p> <p><em>Image: Ray White Working dog sale Facebook</em></p> <p> </p>

Family & Pets

Placeholder Content Image

Are young people smarter than older adults? My research shows cognitive differences between generations are diminishing

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/stephen-badham-1531316">Stephen Badham</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/nottingham-trent-university-1338">Nottingham Trent University</a></em></p> <p>We often assume young people are smarter, or at least quicker, than older people. For example, we’ve all heard that scientists, and even more so mathematicians, <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/nextavenue/2014/08/07/who-says-scientists-peak-by-age-50/">carry out their most important work</a> when they’re comparatively young.</p> <p>But my new research, <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S027322972400008X#:%7E:text=Highlights&amp;text=Three%20review%20studies%20measure%20secular,%2C%20education%2C%20and%20overall%20health.">published in Developmental Review</a>, suggests that cognitive differences between the old and young are tapering off over time. This is hugely important as stereotypes about the intelligence of people in their sixties or older may be holding them back – in the workplace and beyond.</p> <p>Cognitive ageing is often measured by comparing young adults, aged 18-30, to older adults, aged 65 and over. There are a variety of tasks that older adults do not perform well on compared to young adults, such as memory, spatial ability and speed of processing, which often form the basis of <a href="https://theconversation.com/the-iq-test-wars-why-screening-for-intelligence-is-still-so-controversial-81428">IQ tests</a>. That said, there are a few tasks that older people do better at than younger people, such as reading comprehension and vocabulary.</p> <p>Declines in cognition are driven by a process called <a href="https://www.nature.com/collections/cbjacdabdf">cognitive ageing</a>, which happens to everyone. Surprisingly, age-related cognitive deficits start very early in adulthood, and declines in cognition have been measured as dropping in adults as young as just 25.</p> <p>Often, it is only when people reach older age that these effects add up to a noticeable amount. Common complaints consist of walking into a room and forgetting why you entered, as well as difficulty remembering names and struggling to drive in the dark.</p> <h2>The trouble with comparison</h2> <p>Sometimes, comparing young adults to older adults can be misleading though. The two generations were brought up in different times, with different levels of education, healthcare and nutrition. They also lead different daily lives, with some older people having lived though a world war while the youngest generation is growing up with the internet.</p> <p>Most of these factors favour the younger generation, and this can explain a proportion of their advantage in cognitive tasks.</p> <p>Indeed, much existing research shows that <a href="https://theconversation.com/iq-tests-are-humans-getting-smarter-158837">IQ has been improving</a> globally throughout the 20th century. This means that later-born generations are more cognitively able than those born earlier. This is even found when both generations are tested in the same way at the same age.</p> <p>Currently, there is growing evidence that <a href="https://www.pnas.org/doi/10.1073/pnas.1718793115">increases in IQ are levelling off,</a> such that, in the most recent couple of decades, young adults are no more cognitively able than young adults born shortly beforehand.</p> <p>Together, these factors may underlie the current result, namely that cognitive differences between young and older adults are diminishing over time.</p> <h2>New results</h2> <p>My research began when my team started getting strange results in our lab. We found that often the age differences we were getting between young and older adults was smaller or absent, compared to prior research from early 2000s.</p> <p>This prompted me to start looking at trends in age differences across the psychological literature in this area. I uncovered a variety of data that compared young and older adults from the 1960s up to the current day. I plotted this data against year of publication, and found that age deficits have been getting smaller over the last six decades.</p> <p>Next, I assessed if the average increases in cognitive ability over time seen across all individuals was a result that also applied to older adults specifically. Many large databases exist where groups of individuals are recruited every few years to take part in the same tests. I analysed studies using these data sets to look at older adults.</p> <p>I found that, just like younger people, older adults were indeed becoming more cognitively able with each cohort. But if differences are disappearing, does that mean younger people’s improvements in cognitive ability have slowed down or that older people’s have increased?</p> <p>I analysed data from my own laboratory that I had gathered over a seven-year period to find out. Here, I was able to dissociate the performance of the young from the performance of the older. I found that each cohort of young adults was performing to a similar extent across this seven-year period, but that older adults were showing improvements in both processing speed and vocabulary scores.</p> <figure class="align-center "><img src="https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;fit=clip" sizes="(min-width: 1466px) 754px, (max-width: 599px) 100vw, (min-width: 600px) 600px, 237px" srcset="https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=333&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 600w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=333&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1200w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=600&amp;h=333&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 1800w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=45&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=418&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=1 754w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=30&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=418&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=2 1508w, https://images.theconversation.com/files/591482/original/file-20240501-24-esxcic.png?ixlib=rb-4.1.0&amp;q=15&amp;auto=format&amp;w=754&amp;h=418&amp;fit=crop&amp;dpr=3 2262w" alt="The figure shows data for a speed-based task where higher scores represent better performance." /><figcaption><span class="caption">The figure shows data for a speed-based task where higher scores represent better performance.</span> <span class="attribution"><a class="license" href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/">CC BY-SA</a></span></figcaption></figure> <p>I believe the older adults of today are benefiting from many of the factors previously most applicable to young adults. For example, the number of children who went to school <a href="https://education-uk.org/history/chapter12.html">increased significantly</a> in the 1960s – with the system being more similar to what it is today than what it was at the start of the 20th century.</p> <p>This is being reflected in that cohort’s increased scores today, now they are older adults. At the same time, young adults have hit a ceiling and are no longer improving as much with each cohort.</p> <p>It is not entirely clear why the young generations have stopped improving so much. Some research has <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.intell.2016.10.002">explored maternal age, mental health and even evolutionary trends</a>. I favour the opinion that there is just a natural ceiling – a limit to how much factors such as education, nutrition and health can improve cognitive performance.</p> <p>These data have important implications for research into dementia. For example, it is possible that a modern older adult in the early stages of dementia might pass a dementia test that was designed 20 or 30 years ago for the general population at that time.</p> <p>Therefore, as older adults are performing better in general than previous generations, it may be necessary to revise definitions of dementia that depend on an individuals’ expected level of ability.</p> <p>Ultimately, we need to rethink what it means to become older. And there’s finally some good news. Ultimately, we can expect to be more cognitively able than our grandparents were when we reach their age.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/229132/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/stephen-badham-1531316">Stephen Badham</a>, Professor of Psychology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/nottingham-trent-university-1338">Nottingham Trent University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/are-young-people-smarter-than-older-adults-my-research-shows-cognitive-differences-between-generations-are-diminishing-229132">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Mind

Placeholder Content Image

Hughesy spills the beans on major shows set to be axed

<p>Dave Hughes has shared his prediction that <em>The Masked Singer</em> is die to be axed from Network Ten's lineup this year as the network continues to battle dwindling ratings. </p> <p>The host of the show made the admission on his radio show on Tuesday, saying he hadn't been given any updates on when filming was due to commence. </p> <p>“We’ve been waiting on a production schedule. That production schedule has not come through, so as far as I know, <em>The Masked Singer </em>won’t be filmed this year for Channel 10,” Hughes said on his show Hughesy, Ed and Erin on 2DayFM.</p> <p>“We’ve had such a great time over those years, it’s been such a fun show to be on, so many great singers have been on,” he continued. “We’ve had great panels. We started with Jackie O, Dannii Minogue, [Lindsay] Lohan, then Urzila Carlson came in, we’ve got Abbie Chatfield, Chrissy Swan, Mel B. All stars in their own right."</p> <p>“It’s a tough one for the production team.”</p> <p>Later during the radio show, Hughesy and the team called Osher Günsberg to question whether <em>The Bachelor </em>was facing the same grim fate as <em>The Masked Singer</em>. </p> <p>“I tell you what, I haven’t cancelled our trip to Fiji, which is in the middle of the shooting window we normally have [for <em>The Bachelor</em>],” Günsberg, who has been host of the dating show since 2013, said.</p> <p>Osher went on to criticise Australian TV for putting British and American shows on prime time, rather than favouring homegrown talent. </p> <p>“I personally feel we really need to value our own stories, and our culture, and our own voices far more highly,” he said. “And we’ve got to do what we need to do to make that happen on our screens."</p> <p>“If we’re not going to sing our own songs and tell our own stories – we’re just going to be this weird echo of the US and the UK, and that’s not going to work out well for us.”</p> <p>Last year's season of <em>The Bachelor</em> premiered to the franchise’s lowest ratings in its decade-long history, while personalities involved with <em>The Masked Singer</em> have repeatedly said "it is a very expensive show to produce". </p> <p><em>Image credits: Ten </em></p>

TV

Placeholder Content Image

Shannon Noll postpones show due to medical emergency

<p>Shannon Noll has been forced to postpone two of his upcoming shows in Victoria due to a medical emergency.</p> <p>The former <em>Australian Idol </em>winner, 48, took to Instagram to announce that he had to undergo an "emergency procedure" although the exact details of the procedure was kept under wraps.</p> <p>"Hi guys, due to unforeseen circumstances I'm afraid I have to postpone this weekend's shows at Thornbury Theatre and West Gippsland Arts Centre," he began on the post shared on Friday. </p> <p>"I'm so sorry to do this but I had to undergo an emergency procedure yesterday that now prevents me from travelling for the next few days.</p> <p>"Huge apologies again everyone but I look forward to seeing you all at the rescheduled shows soon!" he concluded. </p> <p>Fans took to the comments to wish the star a speedy recovery. </p> <p>"Health comes first, wishing you a speedy recovery," one wrote. </p> <p>"Hope you are back to good health quickly Shannon. All the very best," another added. </p> <p>"Health is the absolute priority - we hope that you’re back fit and fighting very soon!" a third commented. </p> <p>"Get well soon Shannon! Take the time you need to recover," added a fourth. </p> <p>It has been 20 years since the singer rose to fame after becoming a runner-up on the first season of <em>Australian Idol</em>. </p> <p>"To still be a professional musician travelling the country and playing music 20 years later after a singing competition, I'm so thankful and blessed," he told <em>9Honey</em>. </p> <p>"And it's all because of the support the Australian public has given me over the years, during the ups and downs as well."</p> <p>"It's all because of the public. I'm thankful to them and will be forever," he added. </p> <p><em>Image: Getty</em></p>

Caring

Placeholder Content Image

“Is that Snoop Dog?!”: Man caught with fake passenger in carpool lane

<p>A US motorist has been handed a traffic infringement after police found him using a dummy to drive in the carpool lane. </p> <p>Not only did his hilarious attempt to bypass morning traffic with the fake passenger whose goatee was "just a little too sharp" get him fined, he helped authorities answer the common question: “If I have a mannequin in the passenger seat, does that count as a second occupant in the vehicle? </p> <p>"The answer is simple… NO."</p> <p>According to an Instagram post shared by the California Highway Patrol Santa Fe Spring, authorities stopped the unnamed driver for crossing a double line when they noticed the plastic passenger. </p> <p>"Officer Kaplan made an enforcement stop on this vehicle for crossing solid double lines only to realise the driver was the only occupant in the vehicle with their plastic friend," they wrote. </p> <p>The mannequin in question had a human-like mask, sported a hoodie and sunglasses, and was seated upright with his seatbelt buckled in just like any other passenger. </p> <p>And he would've gotten away with it too if it weren't for the fake facial hair. </p> <p>"The goatee was sharp … just a little too sharp," they shared. </p> <p>"We've gotta give it to them, the appearance is next-level modelling but at the end of the day ... plastic is plastic." </p> <blockquote class="instagram-media" style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" data-instgrm-captioned="" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/C6K7Thkr2CO/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" data-instgrm-version="14"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"> </div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <div style="padding: 12.5% 0;"> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; margin-bottom: 14px; align-items: center;"> <div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(0px) translateY(7px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; height: 12.5px; transform: rotate(-45deg) translateX(3px) translateY(1px); width: 12.5px; flex-grow: 0; margin-right: 14px; margin-left: 2px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; height: 12.5px; width: 12.5px; transform: translateX(9px) translateY(-18px);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: 8px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 20px; width: 20px;"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 2px solid transparent; border-left: 6px solid #f4f4f4; border-bottom: 2px solid transparent; transform: translateX(16px) translateY(-4px) rotate(30deg);"> </div> </div> <div style="margin-left: auto;"> <div style="width: 0px; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-right: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(16px);"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; flex-grow: 0; height: 12px; width: 16px; transform: translateY(-4px);"> </div> <div style="width: 0; height: 0; border-top: 8px solid #F4F4F4; border-left: 8px solid transparent; transform: translateY(-4px) translateX(8px);"> </div> </div> </div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center; margin-bottom: 24px;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 224px;"> </div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 144px;"> </div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/C6K7Thkr2CO/?utm_source=ig_embed&amp;utm_campaign=loading" target="_blank" rel="noopener">A post shared by CHP Santa Fe Springs (@chp_santa_fe_springs)</a></p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The driver was issued with a number of citations for carpool violations, but many online commenters shared their amusement at the light-hearted nature of the traffic violation. </p> <p>"Is that snoop dog?!" wrote one commenter. </p> <p>"Leave Stevie wonder alone," joked another. </p> <p>"I really don’t see a problem here because most people are fake and have lots of plastic on them anyways," quipped a third. </p> <p><em>Image: Instagram</em></p> <p> </p>

Legal

Placeholder Content Image

Why are adults without kids hooked on Bluey? And should we still be calling it a ‘kids’ show’?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/jessica-balanzategui-814024">Jessica Balanzategui</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/rmit-university-1063">RMIT University</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/djoymi-baker-1269345">Djoymi Baker</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/rmit-university-1063">RMIT University</a></em></p> <p>“Bluey mania” shows no sign of abating. Bluey’s season finale, The Sign, was the <a href="https://tvtonight.com.au/2024/04/the-sign-breaks-abc-iview-records.html">most viewed ABC program</a> of all time on iView.</p> <p>A “hidden” follow-up episode, aptly named The Surprise, created a storm of <a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-13338251/Bluey-fans-wild-mystery-ending-surprise-episode-meaning.html">headlines</a> around the world, many of which <a href="https://mashable.com/article/bluey-surprise-baby-who-is-the-father">have a decidedly adult tone</a>.</p> <p>As highlighted in social media fan communities <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/arts-entertainment/2023/02/08/bluey-adult-fandom-tiktok/">and</a> <a href="https://gizmodo.com/bluey-disney-plus-bbc-australian-animation-adult-fans-1850426890">articles</a>, the show has struck a chord with adults, many of whom aren’t parents. What do they get from a show that is ostensibly “for kids”?</p> <h2>Parents love Bluey (sometimes more than kids)</h2> <p>Our <a href="https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/sites/default/files/documents/pfpp--australian-children%27s-television-cultures-actc.pdf">research</a> with <a href="https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&amp;rct=j&amp;q=&amp;esrc=s&amp;source=web&amp;cd=&amp;cad=rja&amp;uact=8&amp;ved=2ahUKEwiDjeXNluuFAxW2bmwGHf2aDvoQFnoECA8QAQ&amp;url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.aph.gov.au%2FDocumentStore.ashx%3Fid%3Dec6900b5-42b0-4c3d-b200-5c05ae895fec%26subId%3D751969&amp;usg=AOvVaw2BpyYjP_6i62kXdJqyrplx&amp;cshid=1714522763110954&amp;opi=89978449">children aged 7-9</a> and their parents provides evidence of how enraptured adults are by Bluey. Our findings also suggest it’s the parents who often drive household Bluey obsessions.</p> <p>As one mum told us: "If we could tell the Australian TV gods something that we’d like to have on Australian TV, it would be more Bluey, don’t get rid of Bluey. […] Bluey is loved by mums a lot."</p> <p>Another explained how the show provided learning for parents: "It’s the gentle parenting, kindness, empathy for the children, the humour […] And helping kids [and] families work through real life situations with kindness and compassion."</p> <p>When one eight-year-old and his mum told us about their favourite shows, the following exchange took place:</p> <blockquote> <p><strong>Mum:</strong>: What about Bluey? <br /><strong>Son</strong>: I sometimes [watch it]… <br /><strong>Mum</strong>: You don’t want to say. He doesn’t want to say he watches Bluey. Bluey’s fantastic. <br /><strong>Son</strong>: I sometimes- <br /><strong>Mum</strong>: He wants to be a big boy. […] Everyone in this room probably loves Bluey. It’s not just for kids. <br /><strong>Son</strong>: Enough about that.</p> </blockquote> <p>Beyond families, Bluey has also attracted teen and adult fans without kids – in part thanks to a <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/arts-entertainment/2023/02/08/bluey-adult-fandom-tiktok/">vibrant TikTok community</a> (aka <a href="https://www.tiktok.com/search?lang=en&amp;q=blueytok&amp;t=1714526488575">#blueytok</a>). While some commentary suggests this adult fandom <a href="https://slate.com/culture/2024/04/bluey-the-sign-episode-ending-parents-adults-kids-disney-plus.html">is “weird”</a>, Bluey is only the latest in a long line of “children’s” shows with a passionate adult fanbase.</p> <h2>Shifting barriers in television</h2> <p>The distinction between “children’s” and “adult” television has long been crucial to our cultural understandings of what separates a child from an adult.</p> <p>In the 1950s, <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1749602020911359">academics were concerned</a> children were watching TV content that was too mature for them, turning them into “adultised children”, and that adults watching kids’ shows were becoming “infantile adults”.</p> <p>The industry took note. In 1957, a reduction in children’s TV production in the United States made space for so-called “kidult” shows designed for both age groups.</p> <p>Since then, the boundaries between children’s and adult television have continually shifted. In television’s early days, science fiction was associated with child audiences (which is why many initially assumed Star Trek was <a href="https://www.bloomsbury.com/au/to-boldly-go-9781838609733/">a kids’ show</a>).</p> <p>These boundaries were also influenced by television scheduling. Warner Bros’ early animation shorts were initially all-ages theatrical releases, but in 1960 were packaged into the Bugs Bunny Show – pitched for kids and aired on Saturday mornings. As a result, by 1967 animation was considered <a href="https://web.mit.edu/sp.778/www/Documents/From_Saturday_morning_to_---elevision_cartoons.pdf">kids’ fare</a>.</p> <p>The boundaries shifted again in the 1980s as adult Japanese anime such as Akira (1988) became popular in the West.</p> <p>In 1989, The Simpsons debuted on TV. Our research reveals even today there is confusion regarding the show’s suitability for young children. Some of our seven-to-nine-year-old participants described secretly watching it without their parents’ knowledge.</p> <h2>Childhood healing</h2> <p>Bluey’s adult appeal is credited to the show’s playful <a href="https://www.forbes.com/sites/paultassi/2024/04/14/disneys-giant-new-bluey-episode-the-sign-is-making-parents-cry/?sh=3c4a664f6234">yet emotionally complex</a> content. One reason adults tune into today’s kids’ TV is because it’s far more diverse than the shows they could access growing up.</p> <p>Take 19-year-old Bluey fan <a href="https://www.wired.com/story/bluey-internet-fandom/">Darby Rose</a>, who points to an episode in which a Jack Russell terrier has ADHD. “As a neurodivergent person myself, this representation makes me ecstatic,” Rose says. This is also true of many teen programs, with the queer-friendly high-school romance Heartstopper attracting a large <a href="https://time.com/6301556/heartstopper-netflix-season-2-fans/">adult following</a>.</p> <p>It’s not just <a href="https://theconversation.com/beyond-bluey-why-adults-love-re-watching-australian-kids-tv-from-their-childhoods-169727">childhood nostalgia</a> that drives adults to kids’ shows (although <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/bluey/comments/x1xgf9/what_trips_down_memory_lane_and_nostalgia_does/">this is one aspect</a>). Watching kids’ shows can be self-affirming for adults who missed out on seeing their identity onscreen growing up. Some adult fans <a href="https://www.huffpost.com/entry/bluey-adults_n_65e774c1e4b0f9d26cac99a7">even say</a> Bluey has helped them heal childhood wounds.</p> <h2>Children’s television meets adult fan cultures</h2> <p>Watching “adult” television enables kids to feel more grown-up. Conversely, adults can watch children’s television to embrace aspects of their personality they feel social pressure to repress.</p> <p>The latter is often the case for “Bronies” (a portmanteau for “bro” and “pony”): adult male fans of the animated kids’ show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (2010-20). The community has attracted much <a href="https://www.mirror.co.uk/tv/tv-previews/military-men-obsessed-little-pony-6498303">controversy</a>. But <a href="https://researchportal.tuni.fi/en/publications/its-ok-to-be-joyful-my-little-pony-and-brony-masculinity">research</a> has found the reasons behind being a Brony aren’t suspicious or bizarre, but are empowering in unexpected ways.</p> <p>As Bronies themselves have explained, the fandom allows them to rethink what masculinity means to them, with the support of other fans online and at events such as <a href="https://www.npr.org/2019/08/14/750595032/the-friends-we-made-along-the-way-after-9-years-bronycon-calls-it-quits">BronyCon</a>.</p> <p>Why can’t “manliness” include watching a cute show about ponies with friendship at its heart?</p> <h2>The changing nature of children’s television</h2> <p>The rise of streaming has led to yet another shift. On-demand viewing means freedom from the constraints of TV scheduling, which historically set the terms for “child” and “adult” viewing.</p> <p>As <a href="https://www.routledge.com/Netflix-Dark-Fantastic-Genres-and-Intergenerational-Viewing-Family-Watch-Together-TV/Baker-Balanzategui-Sandars/p/book/9781032121895">our book details</a>, Netflix has invested in the expansion of cultural expectations around what makes “child-appropriate” television.</p> <p>Netflix’s mega hit Stranger Things deliberately pushes at these boundaries to attract a wide audience, from children and teens, to families, to adults without kids. As co-creator <a href="https://www.empireonline.com/movies/features/stranger-things-duffer-brothers-share-secrets-hit-show/">Matt Duffer explains</a>, the aim was to get children hooked on the show, and then later in the season “scare the shit out of them. Then the parents can get mad.”</p> <p>Parents certainly aren’t mad about their children getting hooked on Bluey. They may even be the secret to its global success: to keep the children watching, get the <em>adults</em> hooked.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/228610/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/jessica-balanzategui-814024"><em>Jessica Balanzategui</em></a><em>, Senior Lecturer in Media, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/rmit-university-1063">RMIT University</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/djoymi-baker-1269345">Djoymi Baker</a>, Lecturer in Media and Cinema Studies, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/rmit-university-1063">RMIT University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: ABC</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/why-are-adults-without-kids-hooked-on-bluey-and-should-we-still-be-calling-it-a-kids-show-228610">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

TV

Our Partners