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Salary details leaked by ABC

The ABC was responsible for a leak of staff salaries to a South Australian politician.

2013-11-23_0111The ABC was responsible for a leak of staff salaries to The Australian newspaper.

The Guardian Australia reports a freedom of information request made from the office of Robert Brokenshire – now a Family First MLC – led to a much larger cache of data than intended being inadvertently sent.

It isn’t clear how the information reached The Australian, which published the data on Wednesday. The reporter who broke the story was Sarah Martin, South Australia political reporter for The Australian.

In an email to staff, managing director Mark Scott said the material was sent to the MLC’s office in October last year.

“My concern for staff was that the ABC had not kept confidential, important private information. We were concerned about a deliberate leak or computer hacking and asked for an expedited investigation from our Group Audit team,” he wrote.

“Their investigation has shown that the material was inadvertently sent to the office of a South Australian Member of Parliament in October last year in response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act.”

”I think it hit like a small tsunami, actually,” one insider told Fairfax.

”The newsroom was quite tense because a lot of ordinary foot-soldiers had gone for small pay increments and been told there was no money left … There is no fairness in this as such. Some of those top salaries ought to be downgraded by $50,000 to $80,000, frankly.”

The ABC has now notified the Privacy Commissioner of the matter.

9 Responses

  1. Now this information is in the public domain we can see the hierarchy of salaries at the ABC TV commissioning level and I note the always strangely titled “Head of Fiction” sits significantly below the Controllers salary band, and explains why, when this role was advertised several years ago, did not attract a candidate from the independent sector with appropriate drama producer credits and the demonstrated leadership skills required for such a pivotal role. It’s the old “if you pay peanuts you get monkeys” problem. I suggest it’s time the ABC re-valued the importance of this position to the organisation.

  2. The ABC weren’t sitting on a massive scoop for months and waiting to strike to bring down the govt. Der Spiegel got the extra info when they were reporting Merkel’s phone being tapped. Not that it meant much to the Germans. Then Fairfax picked up on it, then the ABC reported it.

  3. It’s almost impossible to get a job at the abc… And just like musical chairs most jobs are already taken before they are advertised. Reasons cited for not being considered ‘lacks visual integrity’, ‘too commercial’ and ‘not the right fit for the abc culture’ are often excuses cited. It’s astounding that anyone at a government broadcaster can be paid $18,000 an hour for one show a week ? All paid for by the tax payer – are they serious ? Most ABC on air talent wouldn’t even get a ‘look -in’ at a casting for a commercial network. Smart and interesting don’t rate in commercial TV. I think the ABC needs a serious review of its pay scales and hiring process.

  4. The question is probably why was the information sat on for 13 months by the Australian.

    Probably in retaliation for the ABC and The Guardian sitting on the Indonesian phone tapping information will the ALP and Gillard were responsible for it, and waiting until they could try to bring down the Abbott Government with it.

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