Tassie hopeful for ABC’s Auction Room

Tassie politicians worry that if Auction Room doesn't work for ABC1 that up to 50 jobs could go.

The success or failure of ABC’s new Auction Room series has them very concerned in Tassie…

The show hosted by William McInnes premiered on Sunday at 6pm, and was commissioned after the axing of Tassie-produced Collectors.

The public sector union has claimed that up to 50 jobs in the ABC’s Hobart production unit could be cut if the show isn’t a success.

Community Services Minister Cassy O’Connor has told Tasmanian Parliament that cuts to local programming could put the ABC in breach of its charter.

“We run the very real risk, Mr Speaker, of losing those highly creative and talented staff to the mainland, to Sydney and Melbourne.

“If we don’t do something about it, if we don’t stand up to the ABC nationally, that is where production will be centralised,” she said.

The Premier said such a move could jeopardise the future of the broadcast industry in the state.

“We want to ensure that we don’t lose what is good about what they have been able to provide in regional Australia, particularly here in Tasmania, because we don’t have access to what training is available, what equipment that’s available that other communities have,” she said.

Friends of the ABC have also called on Tassie MPs to invite ABC chairman James Spigelman to visit and outline plasn for local programming.

In the midst of Sunday’s fierce ratings war, Auction Room premiered with just 272,000 viewers.

Source: Yahoo

3 Responses

  1. First of all, let me admit that I didn’t watch this programme although I have read press on it over the weekend and when it was announced initially. Therefore I can have no beef with the production values of the show at this point of time, but I understand the style/genre of show this is.

    However, if the statement “up to 50 jobs in the ABC’s Hobart production unit could be cut if the show isn’t a success” in the above article is even remotely correct, then that exposes the gross hypocrisy of the ABC’s bleeding hearts brigade such as the Friends of the ABC.

    Any wonder the ABC cries poor to the government every 3 years if 50 people is considered standard staffing for such a show – and any wonder why the ABC management need to outsource productions to commercial entities who will offer more bang for the bucks.

    Many TV production people in the “real world” (including ex ABC staffers) have first hand experience and commented over the years how overstaffed the ABC is and this statement justifies that view.

    In the “real world”, a programme such as this would be produced by a team of roughly 15 to 20 – maybe at a stretch 25 tops, including post production and multiple 3-person plus segment producer location crews.

    Maybe a studio crew is being counted in the 50 figure – in which case it would be a biggish crew for a small production such as this – and which then raises the questions – are these studio crew full-time staff and what do they do for the rest of the week if their jobs depend on that one programme?

    It’s a very flimsy argument for keeping production going in the “BAPH” states.

    A better argument would be to economically make and better schedule shows that more than 272,000 viewers want to watch.

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