Foxtel’s $30 Million Of Government Cash “Found Not To Exist”

Australian players celebrate after the wicket of Inoka Ranaweera of Srilanka bowls during the ICC Women World Cup Super Six match between Australia and Sri Lanka played at the Brabourne stadium in Mumbai, India on February 10, 2013. (ICC/SOLARIS IMAGES)
SHARE
THIS



Thirty-million dollars of taxpayer’s money awarded to Foxtel in this year’s budget appears to have vanished, a report by the ABC has found.

The cash was promised to Foxtel’s Fox Sports to help promote women’s and other underrepresented sports; however, there are now suggestions it was merely a sweetener to the Rupert Murdoch-owned media organisation after competitors Seven, Nine and Ten had their TV license fees cut.

This year’s federal budget included a measure worth $30 million over four years to “support the broadcast of underrepresented sports on subscription television, including women’s sports, niche sports, and sports with a high level of community involvement and participation”.

However, when ABC Radio Melbourne’s Mornings program requested a Freedom Of Information request seeking correspondence between Foxtel and the Department of Communications regarding the missing millions it found no such documents existed.

The ABC reporting: “In declining access, the Legal Director for the Department of Communications and the Arts ‘refuse(d) access to the requested documents under subsection 24A(1) of the FOI Act, as I am satisfied that documents falling within the scope of your request do not exist’.”

Neither Foxtel nor the communications minister, Mitch Fifield, have made any public comment on the ABC’s allegations.

Other bodies, such as Women Sport Australia, a non-profit organisation that advocates for women and girls in sport, has also queried why the promised money hasn’t materialised into more women’s sport coverage on Foxtel.

“This is $30 million of taxpayers’ money so I think the public would also like to know what the terms and conditions around this deal are,” said Women Sport Australia’s Louise Evans, her comments reported on the ABC.

While Labor’s communications spokeswoman Michelle Rowland was equally as scathing, saying the $30 million “package is not based on evidence, has little substance, and contains no real vision for the future of Australian media”.

“The Australian media industry has been waiting over four years for meaningful reform, but all Mitch Fifield is capable of is poorly planned political deals and trade-offs,” Rowland said.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Advertising Standards Bureau Customer Engagement Fetch TV Scott Morrison

Latest News

Eyeota Enhances Reach And Targeting Precision For RDA Research
  • Marketing

Eyeota Enhances Reach And Targeting Precision For RDA Research

Leading Australian market research data brand, RDA Research, provides actionable consumer intelligence to help businesses inform decision making and growth strategies. RDA Research wanted to make its unique consumer data available for addressable digital targeting and required a data onboarding partner to help activate their data in an online environment.

Enthral Strengthens Journalistic DNA By Hiring Channel 7 Reporter Sean Sowerby
  • Media

Enthral Strengthens Journalistic DNA By Hiring Channel 7 Reporter Sean Sowerby

Storytelling agency Enthral has appointed Channel 7 reporter and sports presenter Sean Sowerby as its new senior PR and content manager in Melbourne. Sowerby (pictured) started his award-winning career at 3AW before spending more than 15 years in television. Enthral founder and manager director, Cameron Smith, spoke of the significance of Sowerby joining the agency. […]

Blis Puts Its CEO In The Desert In Clever New “Data Drought” Ad
  • Campaigns
  • Technology

Blis Puts Its CEO In The Desert In Clever New “Data Drought” Ad

Ever since Google first announced it would be getting rid of third-party cookies on Chrome, digital advertising businesses have been actively sharing their plans for life after cookies. And now programmatic advertising company Blis might have come up with the most creative way to get the message across, in a new video which sees company […]

Agency Icon Sweeps The SABRE Awards
  • Marketing
  • Media

Agency Icon Sweeps The SABRE Awards

Integrated Melbourne agency Icon has taken top honours in the 2021 SABRE Awards, winning the coveted Australasian Consultancy of the Year for 2021 along with a host of category and craft awards. Icon led a large field of Australian agencies with a total of three major and seven minor awards, including gold in the cause-related […]

Former Agency Execs Launch Car Service Summon
  • Marketing
  • Media

Former Agency Execs Launch Car Service Summon

Former agency executives Tim O’Neill and Tim Fouhy have launched the auto technology startup Summon. Australia’s first full e-commerce service for prestige cars. O’Neill and Fouhy both founded Reactive, a digital agency, which was bought by Accenture in 2016. Following the deal, O’Neill and Fouhy ended up leading the company’s digital marketing arm, Accenture Interactive before […]