Tag Archives: ABC Cuts

ABC hit with major budget cuts

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, William Lee, who shares the following links to articles regard cuts faced by the Aaustralian Broadcasting Corporation and other Australian media news:

Regarding the cuts to the ABC, note this email from an ABC Director Regional:

(Source: Radioinfo.com.au)

ABC Radio ‘extremely disappointed’ at cuts

A staff email responds to the federal budget.

A staff email from ABC Director Regional and Local Michael Mason has expressed disappointment at the federal budget funding cuts to the ABC announced this week.

[…]The email reads:

Following the Managing Director’s message regarding more cuts to the ABC’s funding, announced in last night’s Budget, I wanted to add my comments.

Like Michelle, I am extremely disappointed in the Government’s decision to freeze the corporation’s annual funding indexation. And I also share the MD’s concern. This move represents a loss of $84 million in funding over three years starting in the next Financial Year in July 2019.

This comes at a time when the ABC is preparing its submission for its next Triennial funding period, which will also start in July 2019. This means our next funding bid takes on even more importance and significance.

We have 12 months to try and reverse that decision and position the organisation as strongly as possible as Australia’s most trusted media organisation and one that is able to meet all its charter obligations.

In Regional & Local we have consistently delivered high quality programming against a falling trend in funding that the ABC has had to work with over the past five years.

I know that everyone, from our stakeholders in Canberra, to the ABC Executive Leadership Group, to our viewers, listeners and on-line audiences, have all been hugely impressed with the work you have done. Our regional and local content is at the heart of what the ABC does and that won’t change.

Once again, we find ourselves in the situation of defending the importance and relevance of our work in order to safeguard its future. I have every confidence that, given the talent and quality in our team, we will meet the challenge, but to do that effectively, we must do it as one.

I will be talking to you more in coming weeks about what is required from R&L to support the ABC’s opposition to this decision and how best we can contribute to the 2019 Triennial Funding bid.

Read more at: https://www.radioinfo.com.au/news/abc-radio-extremely-disappointed-cuts © Radioinfo.com.au

“Why Australia must restore shortwave radio to the Pacific”

(Source: Devpolicy Blog via Mike Bird)

On our Australian doorstep is an amazing place, Papua New Guinea. Seven of us were there for the month of August, exploring a remote region of islands and atolls in the Massim district of Milne Bay Province by boat, visiting places most people would not think of seeing.

[…]As Australians we were warmly received everywhere. Australia was the PNG administrator for decades and has left many good things in place. The Australian influence was there in diverse ways, including an inspired wooden Hills Hoist and outdoor bench setting at Boagis village, way out at the extreme end of PNG territory.

[…]But there was a worrying side that we shared. We visited many remote islands where basic services are deplorable, particularly their health services. At one sub-provincial health centre in Guasopa village [Woodlark Island], they had nothing but Panadol. We shared our first aid resources and knowledge, and treated those we could with spare drugs we had brought from Australia. There are so many issues facing PNG that we despaired at its future prospects.

Australia is the lucky country, but right now New Guinea is not. We were most surprised and quite angry to learn that Radio Australia no longer transmits to the region, or even the wider Pacific. One small service that Australia could offer is the return of shortwave radio.

The island of Panaeati, south of Misima, is typical of many we visited. It has a population of 2,080 people, many well educated, and fluent in English. The missions and the former Australian administration are responsible for this. Our contacts there expressed great disappointment at the loss of Radio Australia services in January 2017. So much so, that they discussed the prospect of raising a petition at local government level to the Australian government.[…]

Click here to read the full article at the DevPolicy Blog.

The Guardian: Study shows ABC cuts to shortwave & rural broadcasts “jeopardising safety of remote communities”

(Source: The Guardian via Ian P)

Reduction of local news and station closures disastrous for people living outside Australia’s cities, researchers say

Cuts to the ABC in regional and rural Australia and the corporation’s increasing reliance on digital technologies is jeopardising the safety of remote communities and their access to emergency warnings, Deakin University research has found.

The ABC’s increasingly “digital-first” approach to emergency information and the reduction in ABC reporters’ local knowledge is causing great distress among rural populations who rely on broadcast signals because they don’t have the bandwidth or coverage for digital, researchers say.

A reduction of local news and information, centralised newsrooms in metropolitan areas, the closure of several ABC stations and the scaling back of broadcast programming has been disastrous for people outside the cities, according to a new study, Communication life line? ABC emergency broadcasting in rural/regional Australia.

But the ABC has played down the study’s significance, saying it is based on parliamentary submissions and is not an “accurate or up-to-date” summary of the corporation’s role in rural and regional Australia; and that the ABC is not funded as an emergency service.

Based on public submissions to a parliamentary inquiry, the researchers Julie Freeman, Kristy Hess and Lisa Waller found “burgeoning discontent about the corporation’s ability to fulfil its role as a designated emergency broadcaster and provide communication life lines to rural and regional communities”.[…]

Continue reading at The Guardian.

Nick Xenophon champions review of ABC shortwave broadcasting to Pacific

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Ian P, who shares the following via ABC News:

ABC shortwave broadcasting to the Pacific to be reviewed

The decision to end Australian shortwave broadcasting to the Pacific earlier this year could be revisited.

There’s to be a review of Asia Pacific broadcasting services, as part of a wide ranging package of reforms to the country’s media laws agreed to by independent Senator Nick Xenophon.

The Department of Communications and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade are to conduct a review, including examining whether shortwave radio technology should be used.

The review will include public consultation and the report will be made public.

Senator Nick Xenophon has been strenuously opposed the decision by the ABC to end shortwave services, and he was a key crossbench figure in negotiations over the media reforms.

Click here to download the interview.

Click here to read and listen to the interview via ABC News.

ABC scolded for cutting shortwave service

(Source: news.com.au via Trevor R)

The ABC has been slammed by all sides of politics over its “foolish” decision to cut the transmission of shortwave radio to remote Australia and the Pacific Islands.

The Senate debated a private bill on Thursday by crossbench senator Nick Xenophon to force the ABC to restore transmission after it was cut earlier this year.

“It seems a terrible decision that’s been made by the ABC board,” Senator Xenophon told parliament, accusing the public broadcaster of ignoring the bush and Australia’s neighbours.
The ABC insists listeners can still tune in via FM and AM frequencies, the viewer access satellite television (VAST) service and online.

But senators say the ABC fails to understand those alternative methods are not available to everyone in the bush and the information people are missing out on can be life threatening, such as weather warnings.

Senator Xenophon said the ABC had miscalculated how many people relied on the service.
“There are some question marks over the methodology used by the ABC in relation to this.”

Continue reading the full article at news.com.au…