WIN quits Free TV group

Dispute over Reach Rules leads to regional broadcaster quitting industry group.


WIN Television has quit industry lobby group Free TV, amid disagreement over Reach Rules.

Free TV represents commercial Free to Air broadcasters, including regional networks.

Julie Flynn, CEO of Free TV confirmed, “Free TV has a proud history of providing a strong industry voice on a range of issues.

“It is disappointing that WIN have decided to withdraw from the organisation, but Free TV will continue to advocate on behalf of the industry so that we can continue to provide quality services to all Australians for free.”

WIN Television, which has previously quit industry platform Freeview, is one of several regional broadcasters pushing for media reform. But Seven network has hit back at its claims of threats to local news bulletins.

Since 2010 Bruce Gordon-owned WIN TV has ended local news in Mt Gambier and closed bureaus in Albany, Geraldton, Broome, Mackay and Mildura.

Both Seven chairman Kerry Stokes and News Corp’s Rupert Murdoch have rejected calls for changes to the Reach Rules, which limit media proprietors to 75% of the Australian population.

The dispute has widened since Seven announced it would begin Live streaming of its 3 channels in December.

This week Media Watch looked at both sides of the campaign which you can view here.

The Australian reports a letter from WIN CEO Andrew Lancaster to Free TV board said, “Unfortunately, recent events have shown that one Free TV member has views on significant industry issues that appear to be completely at odds with the vast majority of, if not all, the other Free TV members,” Mr Lancaster said in a letter addressed to the Free TV board of directors.

A spokesman for Seven said: “Seven remains fully committed to Free TV, which has represented the industry extremely well over the years on many issues of ­common interest. We can’t really understand WIN’s decision today, which seems very shortsighted to us.”

2 Responses

  1. I consider myself very lucky that I receive Melbourne television stations and not regional ones.
    I live on the very edge border of Melbourne stations, the next town across has regional.

    While I have 7, 9 and Ten.
    They suffer with Prime, Win and Southern Cross.
    Not only do the programs seem worse off, the websites are horrible and I cannot stand those god-awful ads about farming stuff like hay and trucks.

    Give me metro any day, much more sleek.
    I know of many people who would not be sad if those leech channels died.

    1. Sorry Jack, I disagree. One of the great things about Country vs Metro was watching a full Game of Cricket when Cricket game used to blacked out in the Metro area after the first hour or session of the day. I Like it when the Football was shown Live in the Country Channel compare to hour delay in Metro.

      I prefer the WIN news over A Current Affair. I rather known something more in depth than best beauty products or rogue dealers.

      I used to live in area of Melbourne where I got Both regional and Metro TV where I lived for 20 years until recently moving to the bush.

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