On demand, online, personal to you: that’s the challenge for the ABC, like all broadcasters, as Australian media navigates the end of schedule broadcasting. It’s the tension that underlies the day-to-day dramas of personality changes, board appointments and funding cuts.
Sounds great, except it involves shattering the habits of linear destination programming that the ABC has spent decades building up, replacing it with a world of on-demand streaming, podcasts and news online. Even more challenging: the audience isn’t there yet -- or at least much (maybe most) aren’t.
Every step is inherently tentative. Every change contested. Take the 15-minute 7.45am state-based local radio bulletin set to be axed this month. For opponents of the change it’s still the news anchor it was built to be: where audiences come to the linear program for the news that starts the day. It’s that predictability, the destinationists say, that brings authority and trust.