And it won’t cost tax payers a cent

Here’s a bit of good news:

Sky News is planning to launch, within months, a five-channel news service, delivered via IPTV or internet-based television, to broadcast news, business, political and sports content to 180 countries, including China and the Middle East.

The service will not cost taxpayers a cent, unlike the Australia Network, which has $223 million in funding over 10 years.

But then there’s this:

THE ABC has panned the Sky News plan for an international news platform called the Australia Channel that would rival, and potentially replace, its Australia Network, if it is cut in the budget. . . .

ABC spokesman Michael Millet yesterday strongly criticised the venture, after The Weekend Australian reported that Sky’s New Australia Channel would make the Australia Network ­obsolete technologically and distribution wise.

Mr Millet said an IPTV channel service would be no substitute for what the public broadcaster now delivered for its audiences internationally and in Australia.

But you know, it may happen after all:

ALP communications spokesman Jason Clare said: “Australia’s future is tied to Asia and any decision by Sky News to expand into Asia is welcome.”

Welcome indeed.

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27 Responses to And it won’t cost tax payers a cent

  1. Notafan

    Goes to show the government no longer needs to fund news and entertainment, at all.
    And by entertainment I include the Arts, all and sundry. Commercial or hobby, your choice, as long as your hand is out of my pocket.

  2. Harald

    Very clever move. Very clever timing.

    Game on. :-)

  3. Blogstrop

    Time to correct one of the most blatant bits of corruption in tendering in recent years.

  4. It’s a smart move by Sky, Asian news consumers are already spoilt for choice of socialist propaganda, definitely no need for us to subsidise it.

  5. Gab

    The ABC has been obsolete and an unnecessary burden on taxpayers for years. If people still want to watch the ABC let them pay a subscription for it as others do for Foxtel and Sky and stop bleeding taxpayers.

  6. Alfonso

    “ABC spokesman Michael Millet yesterday strongly criticised the venture…. Sky’s New Australia Channel would make the Australia Network ­obsolete technologically and distribution wise.”

    Errr, Their ABC is second rate so therefore Their natural instinct is to attack the superior service.
    The comrades’ understanding of how a market works is the same as it always was.

  7. JohnA

    ABC spokesman Michael Millet yesterday strongly criticised the venture, after The Weekend Australian reported that Sky’s New Australia Channel would make the Australia Network ­obsolete technologically and distribution wise.

    Mr Millet said an IPTV channel service would be no substitute for what the public broadcaster now delivered for its audiences internationally and in Australia.

    He can’t even talk sense.

    Why criticise something if it supposedly won’t be a substitute for your own offering?

    Why not simply demonstrate your superior product and let the viewers decide, hmm?

  8. john constantine

    The left are strong in pushing the meme,

    “You can’t steal a country and think you can keep it”.

    The abc obviously think they can steal a contract, and never have to share the free market.

    –so, a 200 odd million dollar contract can show up on the abc’s front porch, and the abc then give favourable political coverage to those that took the contract from the rightful winner,and gave it to the abc.–

    lucky it wasn’t a bottle of wine,or the abc might have looked as corrupt as those that dishonoured the contract tender process.

  9. lotocoti

    Are there any other commercial decisions the non-commercial competitor would like to take umbrage with?
    Perhaps Mr Millet has opinion on DNxHD 440 too.

  10. IRFM

    I watched the ABC when last in Hong Kong; Tired old shows and out of touch news programs. Yuk!

  11. Andrew

    We’ve seen the C-word (“corrupt”) here and that’s what it was. Run a tender, not like the winner. Run another one. Appoint the loser in perpetuity. Get rewarded with favourable coverage, after announcing that the appointment was blatantly political because the govt didn’t like the winning tenderer.

    How has this not been handed to ICAC? It’s not like the Gillard Regime would have taken any steps to cover it up – the paper trail would be intact because they thought the law didn’t apply to them.

    That said, can Sky provide a full service? Do they have any traitors leaking govt secrets? Can they destroy relationships with local trading partners? Do they have contacts in the people smuggling industry and run propaganda for them including alleging military complicity in deaths and torture?

  12. Elizabeth (Lizzie) B.

    Andrew outlines well the perils of ABC ‘full service’ as we currently experience it.
    The less that this ABC ‘vision’ gets projected by into Asia, the better for Australia.

  13. Baldrick

    Michael Millet … seriously!

    Of course he’d be opposed to anything where public spending is usurped by the private sector. The one time chief political reporter and deputy editor for the SMH and staunch opponent of the Howard government, the man is a raving socialist.

  14. H B Bear

    I suspect this has the ALPBC worried because if people see that SKY can do it in Asia, people might start to wonder exactly what they are getting for their $1.1bn annual spend on the rest of it. The way to end the ALPBC staff co-op is to keep focusing on the costs.

  15. Infidel Tiger

    Those poor bloody Chinese. Imagine having to choose between Sky and the ABC? Hopefully they’ll change the channel to Real Housewives Of Guangzhou.

  16. Bruce

    Is Malcolm Turnbull really going to permit these Sky News larrikins to undermine the ABC with this kind of behavior?

  17. Aaron

    As a person who sees the benefit of signing content licensing deals between the ABC and Chinese state media for our programs, I find it quite perplexing that the readers of this article are in support of Sky instead of our own, as the revenue raised from Sky doesn’t make it back to us, the taxpayer, however all revenue raised from licensing ABC content goes back into the government pool.

    Also, should the government be subsidising a private for profit company to deliver a service for its citizens at all?

  18. Bruce

    Sorry! Should read “undermine his ABC”.

  19. john constantine

    the lefties celebrate having built the great abbottbeast proof wall around the tax funding flowing into leftie ideology. Free market on one side, socialist trabant driving centrally dictated greyness on the lefties side.

    just as reagan spoke to gorbachov, we need it said to turnbull—-”tear down this wall”.

  20. Crossie

    Goes to show the government no longer needs to fund news and entertainment, at all.

    It never did. Newspapers exited long before television without government owned papers so logically a different medium shouldn’t require different treatment or funding.

  21. Crossie

    Why not simply demonstrate your superior product and let the viewers decide, hmm?

    They live and work in a free market but are not of it and have been permitted to do so by gutless conservative governments.

  22. stackja

    Blogstrop
    #1272888, posted on April 21, 2014 at 6:43 am
    Time to correct one of the most blatant bits of corruption in tendering in recent years.

    What about pink batts and BER?

  23. stackja

    Michael Millett
    Director of Corporate Affairs
    http://about.abc.net.au/profile/michael-millett/
    Michael Millett was appointed Director of Communications in February 2009. Prior to joining the ABC, Michael has had a long career in print journalism. For the previous two years he was deputy editor of the Sydney Morning Herald. In a 20-year stint with the Herald, Michael served as a political correspondent, Canberra bureau chief, North Asia correspondent based in Tokyo, senior writer and news editor.

  24. Alan grey

    Where does a public broadcaster get off criticising someone building an international news presence? Seriously, this is clearly overstepping their role.

  25. Boambee John

    “the revenue raised from Sky doesn’t make it back to us, the taxpayer, however all revenue raised from licensing ABC content goes back into the government pool.”

    This only helps the government if the ABC’s budget is reduced by the amount raised from China. Otherwise, the ABC still gets the money from the taxpayer to run the service, and also profits form the money raised. Where is the benefit to the taxpayer in this?

  26. Duncan

    As long as the SkyNews version of #AustraliaNetwork shows football (AFL.) It’s the only good thing on the channel I can find as an Australian living in Asia.

  27. joeallen

    Instead of cutting pensions, Abbott needs to close down or sell the abc. I prefer to shut it down. Eliminate this mouthpiece of Pravda Australia NOW!!!

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