ABC digs in over Olympic radio blackout


“The AOC appreciates the courtesy of a meeting and the chance to make our case on behalf of the broader community, Olympic sports and their communities,” he said.

“We listened to the reasoning behind the decision, however, the AOC will continue to explore ways to ensure all Australian can get access to the Games’ coverage in Tokyo.”

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The ABC announced earlier this month that it had not taken up the radio rights for the Tokyo Games, citing “budget pressures and the changing broadcast environment”.

The decision, which dismayed ABC sports commentators, will save the broadcaster about $1 million from a $1 billion operating budget. Mr Carroll described the decision as “monumentally short-sighted”.

Although the ABC will send a team of journalists and producers to report on the Olympics, its decision not to broadcast the Games live has galvanised Australia’s normally fractious sports chiefs, with Sport Australia chairman John Wylie backing Mr Coates’ call for a rethink.

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Mr Wylie said it was absurd for the government-funded broadcaster to baulk at spending $1 million to cover the Games when approximately $500 million in public money had been invested in preparing Australia’s Olympic teams.

In a letter to Ms Buttrose, Mr Wylie said it was crucial for Olympic sports – many of which receive little media coverage – to receive proper exposure when the Games were on.

Despite their protestations, Ms Buttrose appears not for turning.



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