New ABC (of Australia) 24-hour news network has implications for Australia Network.

Posted: 24 Jan 2010   Print   Send a link
"The ABC has returned fire on the commercial networks by announcing the launch of the country's first free 24-hour television news network, pitting it directly against Rupert Murdoch's Sky News. ... Sky News, CNN and the BBC's 24-hour BBC World are available only to pay TV subscribers." Sydney Morning Herald, 22 January 2010.
     "The channel will be part of a multi-platform ABC News service, ensuring that audiences are able to keep up to date with news developments in different formats and across an array of devices, such as PC and mobile. And the channel will also feed into Australia Network, the Department of Foreign Affairs’ diplomatic broadcast service that the ABC wants to follow the BBC World News model. The ABC has run that network until now, but Sky News Australia also seems likely to bid for the next contract." Rose Major, Rapid TV News, 21 January 2010.
     "The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has announced it will launch a 24-hour television news channel which will be available in 44 countries in Asia and the Pacific on Australia Network." Australia Network News, 21 January 2010. See also ABC press release, 21 January 2010.
     "Some media analysts have said the launch of the new channel is a veiled attempt to head off a push by Sky News to take over the Australia Network. [ABC MD Mark] Scott says the Australia Network has a core news service, but has general entertainment, sports and lifestyle programming and documentaries. 'Is it an advantage that if there's a major breaking story we can go to a 24-hour news channel? Of course,' Mr Scott said. 'If there's a big international or Australian story that's breaking, at the flick of a switch we'll be able to take the ABC news channel and deliver it into 44 countries in the region. But it's not the reason why we're doing it. We're doing it because we have in our charter an obligation to inform the Australian people and to use innovative broadcasting techniques to do so.'" ABC News, 22 January 2010. See also "PM", ABC, 21 January 2010.
     "The next battle will be the $94 million contract to run the Australia Network - the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade's diplomatic broadcast service. The ABC argues that a public broadcaster is best placed to 'encourage awareness of Australia and an international understanding of Australian attitudes on world affairs'. Sky boss Angelos Frangopoulos has countered by stating that Sky - also owned by PBL Media and the Seven Network - would 'commit to the biggest international broadcasting network undertaking by any Australian media organisation'." James Chessell, The Australian, 21 January 2010.
     "The editor of media website Mumbrella, Tim Burrowes, says the channel will be good for the quality of Australian journalism. ... However while acknowledging the ABC's push for innovation, Mr Burrowes also highlighted the political nature of the launch, which is being seen as an attempt to head off a push by Sky News to take over the Australia Network. 'There is a political element, the fact that of course the Australia Network probably has a year or so until the discussions become serious about the renewal [of the service], which ABC international provides at the moment,' he said. 'Clearly this is partly about strengthening the hold on that, that the people behind Sky News can't sweep in and try and grab that contract in a year's time.'" Tim Leslie, ABC News, 21 January 2010.
     "Meanwhile, here’s the snappy promotional video." Margaret Simons, Crikey, 21 January 2010, with link to video.