Meakin worked at the Nine Network for three decades, eventually becoming director of current affairs in 1987 and the head of news and current affairs in 1993; he was credited with the ratings success of programs including Sunday, 60 Minutes and A Current Affair. He was awarded a Walkley Award for leadership in journalism in 2002.
In November 2012, Meakin resigned as director of news and current affairs of the Seven Network after nine years in the position with Rob Raschke named as his successor. Meakin remained with the network in an advisory role for some time.
Meakin was thought to have disrespected the death of an Australian Soldier when he allowed an interview to air that used the death to acquire viewer ratings. Meakin's efforts to expose the secret gay life of a NSW Parliament Minister, David Campbell, raised the ire of the general public with controversial reasons to "out him" in the public interest.
A number of notable community members have been vocal in David's defence despite David's alleged infidelity. Public survey's have demonstrated disapproval of Meakin's reasons for his justification to run the story under the guise of the public interest, and also as retribution for an act of hypocrisy on David's part. No evidence of actual misconduct or ministerial impropriety was presented that demonstrated David's ability to discharge his duties was compromised as minister. But rather the evidence strongly suggests only a matter of marital infidelity.
Meakin was subject to considerable media criticism following three serious drink driving offences committed in 2006 and 2007, resulting in a license suspension of eight years. Although he lost a District Court appeal against his third conviction for dangerous driving, he had his original sentence, 14 months of weekend detention, reduced to 250 hours of community service.
- Idato, Michael; Saville, Margot (11 February 2003). "Ray's back, but Nine's at sixes and sevens". The Age. Retrieved 20 November 2007.
- Media Watch 2000
- Idato, Michael; Saville, Margot (11 February 2003). "Nine chief joins enemy". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 20 November 2007.
- AM - Peter Meakin changes channel
- Knox, David (7 February 2014). "News boss quits TEN". TV Tonight. TV Tonight. Retrieved 8 February 2014.
- Moore, Matthew (24 May 2010). "Politicians' private lives in the media's sights". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 24 May 2010.
- Lewis, Daniel (24 May 2010). "Outing of MP a disgrace, says Kirby". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 24 May 2010.
- West, Andrew (21 May 2010). "Manufactured Scandal leaves another political career in tatters". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 24 May 2010.
- King, David (18 January 2007). "TV chief pleads guilty to drink driving". The Australian. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
- "Meakin gets weekend jail". The Sydney Morning Herald. 31 May 2007. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
- Stewart, John (31 May May 2007). "Channel 9 revels in Meakin sentence". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 21 May 2010. Check date values in:
- Arlington, Kim (18 December 2007). "Boozy TV boss Peter Meakin dodges jail time". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 21 May 2010.
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