WTV Community Television broadcaster future remains uncertain despite eleventh-hour licence extension
· Community Television (CTV) sector, including Perth’s WTV, granted six-month broadcast licence extension
· This follows a similar last-ditch reprieve, at the end of 2016, following pressure from the CTV sector and Labor
· CTV is currently required to transition from free-to-air broadcasting to online delivery model
· CTV requires more long term security from Government as it completes complex transition to online
· Perth broadcaster WTV have 50,000-80,000 viewers per day/ 500,000 viewers per month they are migrating to online platforms
This week marks a win for consumers of locally produced media as the Turnbull Government offers Community Television broadcasters a last-minute broadcast licence reprieve.
Shadow Minister for Communications Michelle Rowland along with Member for Perth Tim Hammond and their federal Labor colleagues have maintained talks with the Minister on behalf the Community Television sector, including Perth based broadcaster WTV, to have the Government extend broadcast licences throughout the online transition period.
Despite the six month license extension Labor remains concerned for the long-term future of the Community Television sector.
“I welcome the announcement of a six-month broadcast licence extension for Community Television stations, albeit at the eleventh hour,” Mr Hammond said.
“The Community Television sector has taken concrete steps towards a very difficult transition from free-to-air television to a completely online model, however, they require more time and a secure license to complete the move in a sustainable way.”
“Six months is not enough time to complete the complex transition to online and any premature cancelation of their licence will put the long term future of the sector in jeopardy.”
WTV have made significant progress toward becoming a completely online broadcaster for their 50,000-80,000 person per day audience by reducing their broadcast costs by 50% and generating creative new revenue streams through advertisers and local media productions including live streaming of community events.
“The Community Television sector is an integral part of the local media landscape providing relevant content and insight to local consumers,” Mr Hammond said.
“WTV is the proving ground of tomorrow’s journalists, TV presenters and screen arts professionals and the Turnbull Government needs to do more to assist the sector move online.”
Wednesday, 28 JUNE 2017
MEDIA CONTACT: GARETH THOMAS 0487 254 547