Yes, 10 supports the Anti-Siphoning List.

"There's a certain amount of content that Australians deserve to see in front of the paywall," says Beverley McGarvey.


With 10 actively pursuing AFL rights for 10 and Paramount+ has it changed positions on the Anti-Siphoning List?

While Foxtel calls it anti-competitive, Free to Air networks have long wanted to see it renewed and extended.

Yet despite having a paywall with Paramount+, the company still sees a role for the Anti-Siphoning List.

“We’ve said all along, we’re tactically interested in sport. We always look at sport when the opportunity comes along,” said  Executive Vice President and Chief Content Officer, Paramount ANZ, Beverley McGarvey,

“We ‘ve obviously got the A-League and a lot of football. I think now that we have a different portfolio of distribution means, it opens up the conversation for more sport. Because in order to commit to something of that scale, you need to have a lot of different places where you can utilise the content and really service the audiencess which we now have.

“There’s a certain amount of content that Australians deserve to see in front of the paywall”

“We’re very supportive of Anti-Siphoning List. We have many different facets to our business. There’s a certain amount of content that Australians deserve to see in front of the paywall. Those sports for our national culture need the reach that is offered in front of the paywall.

“But the economics mean, you’ve got to put some stuff behind the paywall, so that you can invest in those sports and pay for those sports and so they continue to grow at a grassroots level and they have the investment capacity within their organisations.”

Her comments come as Seven CEO James Warburton called on the government to close a ‘loophole’ which allows Streaming companies to bid for major sports rights.

“For us, all of those things can work together. We need to have content in front of the paywall and with the deal that currently exists now with the AFL, for example, some of it is behind the paywall,” she continued.

“So we’d be very supportive for the Anti-Siphoning, but we’re in the fortunate position that we have multiple platforms that we can derive multiple revenues.

“I think if you talked to Nine they’d probably say the same thing.”

McGarvey also maintains that A-League has a been a good driver for Paramount+ subscriptions, but on Free to Air it’s been a modest first season.

Is the plan to stay the long haul in the hope it builds?

“I think that’s absolutely true.  We would prefer the ratings to be larger, but obviously the Men’s grand final was at the weekend and it’s up year on year, compared to where it was. We didn’t have it last year, but it has grown. So the reach has grown. I think we are starting to see green shoots already,” she continued.

“We have talked about it being a great success for Paramount+ class and the A-League fans are really committed. They watch a lot of it.

“We’ve got growth that we need to happen in front of the paywall”

“But it’s been one year, it’s a long deal. They’ve rescheduled 88 games, which meant that we were playing games on a Tuesday not in the venue that we wanted. So it’s been hard. And despite all of that we’ve had a solid start… great on streaming. But we’ve got growth that we need to happen in front of the paywall, and now that we’ve had the men’s final, we’ll sit down with the team now and go how do we grow it next year? You’re always in for the long haul with those sorts of things.”

And hopefully next season will see the game build from some very grim Free to Air numbers on Saturday night.

“That’s fair. Dan (Monaghan) and I haven’t been loving Sunday mornings….”

5 Responses

  1. The laws need to be changed to cater for the big change in veiwing methods over last 2 years. More and more people are using devices and streaming services to watch sorts and events Many people in rural areas have satellite services like Foxtel due poor free to air reception. Important events and sports events need to be on free to air but not exclusively!!! The law is not working as intended in rural areas with many viewers missing events due poor free to air coverage. Streaming services and other providers should also be able to show any event live if they want. Viewers should have the option to choose how and where they watch! Why should 9 for instance get exclusive rights to NRL state of origin and grand final when they treat rest of season pathetically. 2 games per week is not providing proper coverage!!! Foxtel shows every game every week including trials and practice games yet not allowed to show origin or grand final live! Ridiculous!!! Fix it now!!!!

  2. I bet 10 are regretting the contract clause which requires the Saturday night game to be played on the main channel. Repeats of the Dog House rated better, and are the only thing I can recall which delivered ratings that were almost respectable for 10 on Saturdays.

  3. So 10 supports the anti-syphoning list because it allows them to underbid for A-league games to help Viacom’s global sport streaming business, which has had serious problems and locks away the high quality games from most of the population. The FFA has always tried to insist on at least one game of the week be on FTA, either SBS or Ten, because it would be crazy not to. The A-League is still struggling though. The number of games a season is low, minutes are low, especially for young players and the standard is poor. It is no longer developing players for our nation squads or that can be sold to keep clubs afloat. Let Viacom pay the full market price for their sports rights.

  4. While COVID meant some things were out of 10/Paramount’s control, a lot of goodwill has been lost with football fans.

    The tech glitches they had, particularly at the start of the season were woeful.

    The Parmount app is terrible and clunky to use. Being able to pause live games, or join them from the beginning when they’ve already started are standard on Kayo but missing from Paramount.

    The ads on Ten are annoying – and really should be a crawl across the screen. Paramount might be ad-free, but is annoyingly behind the FTA coverage, so not great if you also like to be on socials while watching the match.

    The coverage itself is actually okay. Tara Rushton is a star, and Simon Hill is a gun. Their magazine show Round Ball Rules is a good step forward, but is hidden away on YouTube/Ten Play. Would be nice to see it on Paramount or one of 10’s channels.

    There’s a lot to improve. Hopefully they reach out to fans for feedback.

Leave a Reply