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Media, ethics, and journalism. What works. What doesn't.

Jeffrey Dvorkin

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A Public TV Vision from the Aussies

My old mate Bruce Woolley from our CBC days has returned to his native Australia where he is involved with an exciting new public television service to be launched by the ABC. The money for this venture is coming from internal re-direction because information - not reality entertainment shows - is the priority.

Some inspiring words announcing the new channel from the managing director, Mark Scott:

I am delighted to announce that the ABC will launch Australia’s first free-to-air 24-hour television news channel in 2010.

News is an important part of our charter and in recent years we have worked hard to be able to deliver the best in local, national and international content. In the digital era, the audience demand has grown - viewers seek news services at the time they want and in the form they want. We have responded by expanding our news offerings, creating new services on mobile platforms and providing more live coverage of major events on television, radio and online.

Our 24-hour news channel is a logical but important next step: the ability to deliver high-quality, continuous and commercial-free coverage of major breaking stories in Australia and around the world, plus regular news updates and a range of new programs offering original reporting and analysis. The service will also be available to go live to 44 countries in Asia and the Pacific on Australia Network.

The ABC is delivering the news channel using funds freed-up by changes to our news production processes. We have not sought additional Government funding and the channel will be launched by making use of our existing High Definition spectrum.

We are in the best position to deliver this service to the Australian public. As they have already paid for ABC services, we do not need to fund the news expansion through advertising or subscription. The service will be independent and available at no additional charge.

We can also take advantage of the largest investment already made by any Australian broadcaster: eight state and territory news rooms, 60 local regional newsrooms and 12 international bureaux, already creating high-quality news content that will be available to the new venture.

The new channel represents the biggest expansion to our news operation in decades. It is a vital step to help fulfilling our charter in the digital age and will help us to keep more Australians informed, in more ways, more often, every day of the year.

1 comment:

  1. If only we had a third CBC radio channel for Triple J and Radio National rebroadcasting.

    Unfortunately, the idiots who program CBC have dropped Radio Australia from the overnight slots to be replaced by CBC Beige.

    CBC has a lot to learn from the ABC.