Two intriguing jobs were advertised internally at the ABC this week: Executive producer of the Sydney 7pm TV news and senior executive producer for the same news broadcast. This is part of a massive internal restructure of ABC Radio and TV News that’s been going on for the best part of this year.

Prior to this, the ABC in Ultimo in Sydney had an unwieldy system where there were two producers to oversee Radio and TV news. These were referred to as bi-media roles, and there was also a separate person who was responsible for the line-up of the 7pm Bulletin.

Now there will also be two chiefs-of-staff for the Sydney newsroom, which has both radio and TV reporters. And there will be a couple of associate producers appointed for the 7pm TV news. In going down this route, the ABC is following the practice in the commercial TV newsrooms of having a line-up producer, an actual EP of the bulletin, and then someone in charge of the newsroom.

John Cameron retains control over the News and Current Affairs Division, but the new EP and senior EP in Sydney will introduce a new sort of structure, one that will probably be repeated interstate. Nine in Sydney has a managing editor/boss in Tony Ritchie, an EP in Graham Thurston and a line-up producer (Geoff Maurice). There’s an international editor and three or four associate producers, depending on the day of the week or the volume of news.

Peter Fray

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