Labor Will Support Local TV & Free Sport in Streaming Age

Labor Party

All Australians should have the chance to enjoy iconic sporting events live and free, rather than behind the paywalls of multinational streaming companies.

That’s why an Albanese Labor Government will review the anti-siphoning scheme and give working families the chance to watch, for free, events of national and cultural significance.

Working families and Australians more broadly face the triple whammy of interest rate rises, skyrocketing costs of living and falling real wages, and too many still don’t have reliable broadband access.

We can’t afford to have our sporting heroes disappear onto costly subscription streaming services.

Labor also wants to ensure our local TV services, which broadcast the Australian content, sports, news and emergency broadcasting Australians rely on, are easy to find on connected TV platforms, like smart TVs.

We will legislate a prominence regime to ensure Australian TV services can easily be found on connected TV platforms.

An Albanese Labor Government will back our local media sector so it can compete and thrive in the era of big tech, global streaming services.

The Morrison Government has dropped the ball when it comes to protecting free access to sports and easy access to Australian TV on connected devices.

Scott Morrison’s track record shows he simply can’t be trusted to put free content and services for ordinary working Australians first:

  • Failing to review the anti-siphoning list before it was due to sunset last year (April 2021), and failing to commence a public review of the scheme ahead of the expiration of the list early next year (April 2023).
  • Publishing a consultation paper on modernising TV regulation that didn’t even mention the anti-siphoning rules.
  • Creating a Future of Broadcasting Working Group that didn’t hold its first meeting until the last business day of the 46th Parliament.
  • Handing $40 million of taxpayer funds to Fox Sports which put more sports behind a paywall.
  • Trying to boot Community TV off-air, despite there being no alternative use of the spectrum for local services that broadcast grassroots sports programs.
  • Cutting ABC funding which contributed to the end of the ABC’s almost 70-year run as the official non-commercial Olympic Games radio broadcaster.

An Albanese Labor Government will conduct consultative review processes as a priority that provide all relevant stakeholders, including media and sports, the opportunity to share their views.

Quotes attributable to Anthony Albanese, Leader of the Australian Labor Party:

“Every Australian should get to see major sporting events.

“For a whole lot of Australians, free to air TV is essential to seeing those moments which lift us up as a nation, that inspire us, that help define who we are.

“Major sporting events should be on free to air TV.”

Quotes attributable to Don Farrell, Shadow Minister for Sport and Tourism:

“You can’t be what you can’t see.

“It’s imperative that future generations can see their heroes in action, live on free TV.

“Labor is committed to ensuring Australia’s sporting traditions are upheld and accessible to everyone.”

Quotes attributable to Michelle Rowland, Shadow Minister for Communications:

“Labor is committed to a sustainable media industry that can get major cultural and sporting events into every Australian lounge room.

“An Albanese Government will give the industry the certainty it needs to continue to deliver for Australian families.”

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