The Sydney Morning Herald reports ABC managing director Mark Scott has said privately the show will remain on air. But it may may have its format overhauled or be shifted to ABC News 24.
An editorial in the newspaper today adds:
The ABC should be looking to shore up its journalism – and Mr Scott has hinted at the right approach by suggesting compelling editorial and core competence criteria be used to protect key activities. Programs such as Lateline surely qualify.
By contrast The Australian quotes Neil Brown QC, who wasrecently appointed to the nomination panel for ABC and SBS board appointments.
“I used to stay up at night and watch it. But for the last two years I haven’t bothered,” he declares.
“If I’m not bothering to watch something then perhaps other people are feeling the same way and I suspect the ABC has picked up on that.
“My view would be the 24-hour news channel is the place to have Lateline.”
Apologies to the 161,000 other viewers who averaged across its episodes last week.
Meanwhile speculation over change does not end there.
Catalyst is reportedly under the microscope, with its season length reduced or, in a worst case scenario, axed altogether, according to Fairfax.
ABC2 is another said to be under scrutiny while foreign bureaus in Tokyo and New Delhi may see some reporters work from home or without a full-time camera crew.
An ABC spokesman stressed that no final programming decisions have yet been made.