Australian newspaper the Herald Sun apologized for breaking an embargo and naming comedian Hamish Blake the “Gold Logie winner two hours before the rest of Australia knew,” the Sydney Morning Herald reported. The Logies are Australian TV awards.
The newspaper, which is owned by News Corp., claimed the embargo-break was an accident, and said in a statement:
“We apologise and hope it did not ruin viewers’ overall Logies experience. The error was certainly accidental in that there was no deliberate intention to break the strict Logies embargo.”
The newspaper had originally claimed that it was Google’s fault, the Sydney Morning Herald reported. Google denied the accusation, saying “While we strive to provide the freshest, most relevant search results on the Logies and more, Google can only index material already published on the web.” Later, the Herald Sun said, according to the Sydney Morning Herald, “Google is in no way responsible for what happened. We did not intend to imply any error on Google’s behalf.”
The Herald Sun reportedly said in a statement “The error occurred during live testing of the Herald Sun’s new iPad application which is due for release in coming weeks. Live testing has been taking place for about a week. At no time did the Herald Sun publish the name of the winner on its website, iPad app or in Twitter
The Australian explained that the Herald Sun said that story’s link was “momentarily created and published by Google.” According to the Australian, after the Herald Sun broke the news, Nine ran a story on ninemsn.com.au about it. That story also was published before the broadcast announcement. According to Mumbrella, a website that reports on “Australia’s media, maketing and entertainment,” a ninemsn spoksperson explained its report was about the Herald Sun’s publication of the story in advance.
The Canberra Times noted that “the report was immediately pulled off the News Limited website, social media was alive with the news and the media outlet was then evicted from the press room.” The Herald Sun’s “seven-man team” was “ejected from the ceremony,” because of the embargo break, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
Moving forward, ACP Magazines said it may stop using embargoes to allow media outlets an advance look at news. ACP Magazines “runs the Logies,” according to Australia’s ABC News. An ACP Magazines spokesperson is quoted by Sky News as saying:
“The concept of the embargoed results is now a thing of the past. We have to think about how we share the information with the other media.”
We have written to the Herald Sun and Nine Entertainment Co., which owns ACP Magazines, for more information and will update with any response.