You wouldn’t expect the ABC to encourage its audience to give money to Consolidated Media Holdings. But it is, in a roundabout way.

Three of Aunty’s “stars” are up for Gold Logies this year: Andrew Denton, Chris Lilley and Adam Hills. And, like the nerdy kid finally in with a chance, the ABC’s pulling out all stops to get a date with the blonde statuette.

In the lead-up to the Nine Network’s May 4 extravanagza, the ABC has campaign ads running between shows. While couched in comedy — it references The Chaser! — they can’t quite hide the gold lust. It’s quite odd to see the national broadcaster play the PR game. Watch one of the ads here.

Well at least the strategy’s upfront.

Another ad has appeared on the ABC’s TV subsite. The pitch runs: You can’t buy world peace, but you can support your ABC favourites! “The boys need you. ABC TV needs you. So do it for their families…”

Inspired to make a difference? Now all you have to do is call or SMS some numbers, at 55c a pop.* Yes, the only way you can have your say is to cough up a little more than your 8c a day. Staff at Aunty are also being encouraged to vote early and vote often. 

And where does that money go? The Logies, of course, are TV Week‘s baby. So coin from voting flows through to ACP Magazines, ergo PBL Media, ergo CMH.

In the past, people could only vote by buying a copy of TV WeekThis year, the competition is open to all, thanks to a phone voting system. With a more egalitarian process in place, the ABC decided it could truly put its hat in the ring, whereas in the past it balked at pushing people to buy a product. ABC Publicity told Crikey in a statement today that the change:

…provides a level playing field for viewers everywhere in Australia. ABC TV wants to alert its viewers to these changes and provide them with information on which ABC personalities have been nominated, thereby giving them the opportunity to support the ABC TV talent they watch and love.

Unlike China and Tibet, the quest for Gold sees Aunty and the Nine Network united in a common goal.

*Voice call costs may be higher from pay/mobile phones.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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