Saturday, July 24, 2010

ABC Bias in Election coverage

COMMENT: The Australian newspaper has an interesting article looking at bias in ABC's election coverage...
ABC picks sides while the 'editor-in-chief' watches on
"One of the most vocal critics of the ABC is a former staff member, Kevin Naughton, who worked at the ABC for 16 years, covering 10 state and federal elections. Naughton, who was media adviser to former SA Liberal leader Martin Hamilton-Smith, told The Weekend Australian yesterday: "The ABC has always publicly defined itself as balanced. It does so, because that's what its editorial guidelines demand of reporters and broadcasters.
"The reality is different. ABC newsrooms get very nervous when the Liberal Party looks a winning chance and they get angry when Liberal governments retain power.
"One classic example was the clarion call of 1996 when a flustered senior current affairs producer exhorted the troops to get stuck into the Libs because, 'we could lose this thing . . . Keating could lose'.
"Programs such as The 7.30 Report are built on a Labor culture of ALP for the workers (including struggling journos), and Kerry O'Brien didn't disappoint when he gave honeymooning PM Julia Gillard a nice run on Monday night."
The Australian's editorial is scathing of ABC New's performance...

Less opinion and more news needed at the ABC

"IN his determination to dominate the news media, ABC managing director Mark Scott has missed the only point that matters. It's the quality and not quantity of content that matters."
"Mr Scott allows his senior news-gatherers to use the organisation as a bully pulpit for their own opinions."
"While this newspaper has called all parties to account in the first week of the campaign, it is as if some in the ABC are asking ALP national secretary Karl Bitar to brief them on what questions to ask."
"Deborah Cameron's morning program in Sydney combines a suspicion of business with advocacy of deep-green lifestyles."
"We also pay the ABC to break news, and lots of it, but the corporation recycles stories across its services."
"And while The 7.30 Report used to set the agenda for the next morning's news, its MO today is for O'Brien to tell us what he thinks. More often than not, his main interview is with another ABC journalist."
"He must extract productivity improvements from staff so there is more original news content."
As we revealed in our Productivity survey, the productivity of ABC News has plummeted over the last 2 years. Time for a clean flush.

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