The official ratings are over for 2020 but the breakfast wars rage on as the Sunrise weather guy is accused of breaking protocol
Channel 9 is furious with the behaviour of Sunrise reporter Sam Mac at Brisbane Airport this morning, who was covering the first plane arrivals from Sydney into Brisbane alongside TODAY reporter Aislin Kriukelis.
As passengers left the plane, a media throng was trying to capture the first moments after 8 months of border restrictions.
Both Mac and Kriukelis were reporting live for Sunrise and the Today Show respectively.
With limited people to talk to, both reporters ran in with mics out hoping to score the first interviews.
But sources at Nine are critical of the way Mac behaved, saying he didn’t follow standard protocols. It’s not uncommon for reporters to try and stay out of each others shots and respect any interviews already taking place.
Insiders claim Mac broke those rules and ambushed the TODAY reporter, repeatedly jumping in her shot and talking over her.
For their part, insiders at Seven are bemused by the claims, telling TV Blackbox there was no malice from Mac and it was just him trying to be funny.
While both reporters seemed to try and avoid each other, there were moments where both were trying to interview the same people.
The presenters at Sunrise seemed to be laughing at the chaos with Mac commenting:
“I feel this lady is trying to get in, I don’t know her name, but I feel like she’s cutting my gig.”
It’s worth noting Mac was reporting live and conducting the first interview at the key moment before TODAY crossed to the scene.
At one point he looked at Kriukelis in the background of his shot and remarked:
“How is she getting all the good interviews?”
Twitter users reacted angrily to the scenes calling it ‘car crash TV’, with some also calling out Mac’s behaviour, whereas other called for him to get a Gold Logie for his efforts.
The biggest problem here seem to be the two very different approaches taken by each network. Sam Mac presents the weather and light-hearted segments whereas Kriukelis is a journalist. It’s like putting oil and water together – they just don’t mix.
While news reporters often share the same beat and work together to make sure each one gets what they need (yes, even though newsrooms are often at war, those on the ground are usually friends with their rivals), the weather gig is something completely different. Mac’s job is to make fun TV and get results.
He certainly followed the brief, but do the ends justify the means?