Australia Council Submission to the Review ABC and SBS: Towards a Digital Future

On 16 October 2008, the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, announced the release of a discussion paper ABC and SBS: Towards a Digital Future intended to stimulate comments about the future of Australia's two national broadcasters, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and Special Broadcasting Service (SBS).

The Australia Council is the Australian Government’s principal arts funding and advisory body.  Our vision is to enrich the nation by supporting the practice and enjoyment of the arts.  Each year the Australia Council invests more than $150 million in the creation of high quality works by Australian artists and arts organisations, and we are continually looking for ways to access new and bigger audiences for this work.

The public broadcasters have had a major role in building and uniting Australia; and in contributing to a lively national conversation. The arts play a crucial role in this national conversation, because they provide one of the most important ways in which we exchange ideas and explore our creativity and our humanity. They are the means by which the fabric of national culture is sewn together. For decades the public broadcasters have provided one of the most potent means by which art in Australia is experienced.  Therefore, a strong future for public broadcasting in the digital age is vital to the arts.

This submission was made to the Department of Broadcasting, Communications and the Digital Economy on 12 December 2008.

View the submission here.

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