ABC Managing Director Mark Scott’s Farewell Address To The National Press Club

Mark Scott, the Managing Director of the ABC, has delivered a farewell address to the National Press Club.

Scott retires as Managing Director in May. He will be replaced by a former Google executive, Michelle Guthrie.

  • Listen to Mark Scott’s speech (33m)
  • Watch Scott’s speech (33m)

Transcript of Mark Scott’s Address to the National Press Club.

One Sure Bet: The Future of Public Broadcasting

Ladies and Gentlemen

It’s wonderful to be able to join you today at the National Press Club.

At the ABC, we are in the midst of something that’s very rare in media circles and rarer still in Canberra – a well-planned, warm-spirited CEO transition. [Read more…]


ABC Says Its Reports Of Asylum Seekers’ Claims Should Have Been “More Precise”

The ABC has conceded that its reports of claims by asylum seekers of mistreatment by Navy personnel should have been “more precise”.

After several weeks of media coverage of its reporting of the claims and an adverse finding by its own Media Watch program, the ABC’s Managing Director, Mark Scott, and the Director of News, Kate Torney, issued a statement in which they say that there was no attempt to “pre-judge” the claims.

They said: “The ABC has not attempted to play judge and jury on this matter. We have reported the asylum seeker claims, broadcast the video showing burns and consistently sought more detail from witnesses and officials.”

Media statement from the ABC.

ABC Statement

The ABC, along with other national media, has been covering an important story about recent asylum seeker boats being turned around and investigating what occurred on board those boats. There have been allegations from asylum seekers that Navy personnel mistreated and caused injury to some of them – allegations that have been strongly denied. [Read more…]


Turnbull Announces Efficiency Study Of ABC And SBS

The Minister for Communications, Malcolm Turnbull, has announced an efficiency study of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and the Special Broadcasting Service (SBS).

The terms of the reference for the study are shown below. They specifically exclude all matters relating to the broadcasters’ charters, editorial policies, advertising and program quality.

The study will be conducted by the Department of Communications, assisted by Peter Lewis, the former Chief Financial Officer of Seven West Media Limited. The study is required to be completed by April, prior to the May Budget.

A brief statement from the Managing Director of the ABC, Mark Scott, says: “The ABC has constantly reviewed its operations to deliver the best and most efficient return to Australian audiences. We have been in consultation with the Minister and will work with the Department and Mr Lewis on this new study.”

  • Watch Turnbull interviewed on SBS (4m)

Statement from Malcolm Turnbull, Minister for Communications.

ABC and SBS Efficiency Study

The Department of Communications will conduct a study of the efficiency of the operations of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and the Special Broadcasting Service. Mr Peter Lewis, formerly Chief Financial Officer of Seven West Media Limited, will assist the Department in this work. [Read more…]


Mark Scott Discusses The Future Of The Sydney Morning Herald

In a wide-ranging speech, Mark Scott, Editor in Chief of Fairfax newspapers, has painted an optimistic but challenging future for the Sydney Morning Herald and newspapers in general.

Addressing the Sydney Institute, Scott discussed the need to secure more online classified advertising and spoke of the demographics of newspaper readership. For example, surveys show that only 8% of consumers gain their news from the ABC and broadsheet publications. Justifying the Herald’s coverage of Australian Idol, Scott said: “Of the 3.3 million who watched the final episode, very many were the affluent and influential core of Herald readership.”

Online news pointed to the need for newspapers to be unique online and in print, Scott said. Referring to the content of the SMH, he said: “Our readers want good strong news, politics,
investigations and international affairs. But they also want pop culture and fashion and lifestyle journalism as well. Younger people in particular see entertainment as news. And all our readers want their news produced in a way that it can be easily read and understood, with clear graphics, strong pictures and a good mix of content. [Read more…]