ABC Annual Report: reassurance for loyal audiences

ABC Annual Report: reassurance for loyal audiences

ABC Managing Director, David Anderson, has reassured ABC audiences that the broadcaster will “keep faith with those who consume media via scheduled broadcasts” as it moves to a digital future.

ABC South East NSW

In the 2022/2023 Annual Report, Anderson said the ABC has long term contracts to broadcast radio and television services, with any changes to these services to be “driven by the evolution of the ways in which Australians use media”.

Digital-first, he said, “does not mean digital only”.

However, Anderson said that it is expected that, over the next five years, “audiences who prefer to access ABC content through digital platforms will outnumber those who access it through traditional broadcast platforms”.

In her last message as ABC Chair, Ita Buttrose, says that the ABC has “endured because we have always adapted and evolved with the Australian public and the media environment in which we operate”.

ABC Friends will continue to campaign to ensure that the ABC serves all audiences and has the government funding to do so.

According to the annual report, the ABC was Australia’s number one ranked broadcaster in 2022-23, with a reach of 38% or 6.8 million people across the five-city metro population. 

ABC News Digital reached an average of 53% of Australians aged 14+ each month, with the ABC listen app achieving 4.1 million weekly streams in 2022-23. 

Bluey’s Season 3 opening episode broke the ABC iview record for the launch of a series and the all-time broadcast record for the ABC Kids channel, while seven million people engaged with triple j’s Hottest 100 of 2022. 

Overall community sentiment towards the ABC improved during 2022-2023, with 81% saying that the ABC performs a valuable role and 41% a very valuable role.

A representative sample of 18 to 75 year olds are asked online each month about the value of the ABC’s contribution to Australian society.  The ABC Corporate Tracking Study also explores public perceptions about the ABC’s performance in relation to specific aspects of its Charter.

Consistent with previous surveys, 76% said that ABC television provides good quality programming, with 66% saying it does a “good job” in the number of shows it provides. Some 70% of respondents described the quality of commercial TV as “good”.

Among those who had used ABC digital services in the past month, 90% believed the quality of content was “good”, with 45% of ABC online users rating the quality as “very good”. 

In terms of the Charter, some 80% believe the ABC does a “good job” of being distinctively Australian, while 73% believe it does a “good job” of being accurate and impartial when reporting news and current affairs. 

Just under 70% believe the ABC does a better job of covering country and regional issues compared with commercial media, and 79% trust the information that the ABC provides. This compares to the levels of trust recorded for Internet search engines like Google (69%), commercial radio (60%), commercial TV (58%), newspaper publishers (58%) and Facebook (32%).

Sophie Arnold
E-news Editor