ABC drops Annual Public Meetings

ABC management is not continuing with its Annual Public Meetings in which members of the public could hear from top brass and ask questions.

Former managing director Michelle Guthrie, chair Justin Milne and financial officer Louise Higgins spoke at their first and only Annual Public Meeting back in February 2018 at ABC’s ­Ultimo headquarters in Sydney. Michael Rowland was host of proceedings which was live streamed on the ABC website and Facebook and YouTube.

Viewers could also submit queries Q&A style which were answered online later.

The event was deigned to increase transparency and accountability for the broadcaster, with more to follow.

Bu by September Guthrie and Milne had both gone, to be replaced by David Anderson and Ita Buttrose respectively. Due to the upheaval no further events were held.

While there is no suggestion the broadcaster is dropping its accountability, ABC sources confirmed there are no more Annual Public Meetings planned.


  1. The previous Board and MD used to do something similar where they would take the entire board and senior execs on a bit of a holiday once a year to somewhere other than Sydney for a board meeting. The intention was that the night before they would do a “town hall” meeting where members of the public could ask questions. That turned out to be a fizzer so the next time they just had an invite-only cocktail party for the local movers and shakers and Scott came on the morning show to answer questions from the public on-air. Other than the two “Dorothy-Dixers” we had already organised, nobody bothered to call so I was left chatting to him about nothing very much for twenty-five minutes. Don’t know whether they did that again!!!

  2. Good, as it was a complete waste of time for both the ABC and the audience. Being it was a carefully stage managed spin festival with vetted questions and obviously crafted and rehersed answers. It did the ABC no credit and was an insult to the audience being the staged self promotion event it was. You could tell by the look on Matt Peacock’s (ABC Staff Elected Director) face that the event was a complete waste of time.

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