The ABC has again found itself in the news headlines, this time, it’s the broadcaster’s director of news getting the spotlight.
Earlier this week, Gaven Morris told ABC staff in a memo, as well as announcing over his personal Twitter account, the broadcaster was facing a $43 million cut to newsgathering services thanks to the recently released Turnbull Budget for 2018.
A claim which Morris can now no longer make sense of.
“I can’t fully explain what was or wasn’t said.”
“What I do know is our people were left with a very clear impression that news funding would be discontinued,” he said.
“Now if that’s not the case and the government is open to a conversation about continuing that funding, we are ready to go … I can’t fully explain the discrepancy between the accounts of what was and wasn’t said,” he added.
Morris isn’t the only person confused by his claim, with communications minister Mitch Fifield also commenting on Morris’ incorrect figure.
A statement from a spokesperson speaking on behalf of Fifield said, “We are unable to explain why the ABC were confused about normal triennium budget processes, nor why they wrongly asserted funding was not being renewed when they had not even applied for it.”
“Nor can we explain why they at no stage sought clarification from the minister or his office, despite being informed about the measures … several weeks ago.”
Morris apologised for the figure during a conference with the Melbourne Press Club on Thursday.
While he was quick to backpedal on the $43 million, Morris did not downplay the impact the actual budget cuts would have on the ABC, a total of $83.7 million over the next three years.
“Make no mistake, there is no more fat to cut at the ABC. Any more cuts to the ABC cut into the muscle of the organisation.”
All the while, Morris said news program Four Corners would receive extra episodes.
“We are adding four locally made episodes to the Four Corners’ season, meaning we will now broadcast 44 programs a year,” he said.
“(Four Corners) EP Sally Neighbour is already recruiting some digital producer roles so we can ensure this incredible reporting isn’t just shown once on a Monday night, but goes on to have an equal digital life as well.”
In other ABC news, Melbourne businessman Joseph Gersh has just been appointed by the Turnbull government to the board of the broadcaster.
Twitter has just experienced its fastest growth in revenue since 2014, with the social media platform benefiting from increased interest from advertisers. Revenue was up 74 per cent YoY, according to the company’s Q2 results, reaching $US1.19 billion ($1.6 billion) from $US683.4 million ($925 million) 12 months ago. The strong results came in the same […]
Wild Turkey has announced the launch of its new global creative campaign and platform, ‘Trust Your Spirit’, featuring the brand’s creative director and spokesperson, Matthew McConaughey. The global campaign and platform ‘Trust Your Spirit’ is to encourage people to be bold, unapologetically themselves, and stay true to who they are. The global tagline and ethos […]
Telecommunications company Optus has announced it will launch the world’s first TikTok sign-language activated filter. Featuring Optus ambassador Ian Thorpe, Optus will unveil a branded effect that shows TikTok users how to say key phrases in Auslan sign language, including ‘How are you?’ and ‘It starts with Yes’, through the hashtag challenge #SignYes. Optus will […]
Podsights has revealed new insights into the effectiveness of advertising in podcasts, tracking global and Australian podcast advertising trends. This is the first Australian report to be published since ARN partnered with Podsights to set the standard for best-in-class podcast advertising measurement. The report includes additional analysis and follows a series of Measurement Masterclasses held for […]
NGEN’s 2021 charity cup has raised over $175,000 for UnLtd charity partner Gotcha4Life. Gotcha4Life is a not-for-profit foundation raising awareness and funding to provide educational workshops and innovative programs that build mental fitness in individuals and communities. While Sydney and Brisbane completed the Charity Cup in June, before Covid restrictions hit, the final leg in […]
Australian tech incubator Cicada Innovations and Biennale of Sydney are launching the ‘New & Sustainable Materials Challenge,’ in an effort to create a more sustainable future. The works of chosen material-makers will be showcased to millions of Biennale audiences, exhibition partners, and exhibition makers globally. The Challenge is open to any Australian and UK startups, […]