- THE ABC's foreign correspondents in uproar last night.
Management has decided to sack some of their translators, researchers and fixers and close down their stand-alone bureaus to save costs.
Correspondents will have to work out of rented space in Associated Press Television News offices and share the agency's support staff.
"They will be shoved in a corner in a commercial news agency."
"How does this fit with the ABC charter and its demand for independence?"
Kate Torney the ABC's director of news, head of news policy Steven Alward, and John Turener none of them having been foreign correspondents, went on what could be called "assassination tour" of the targeted foreign bureaus to sack the correspondents' support staff.
With the arrival of ABC News 24, correspondents have been expected to do more with less, filing around the clock for a 24-hour platform as well as traditional TV, radio and online commitments.
This has fuelled fears they will become "desk D" who do "rip and reads" of the newspapers instead of gathering original material in the field.
The ABC could easily slip into a second rate news gathering organisation if they are not careful.
Even worse they could become hostage to the likes of the Australian Newspaper(News) once they have to rely on commercial media partners and even have to share office space, with others looking over their shoulder.
This looks very much like the accountants have been let off their leash, with no allowances for the high reputation built up this group within the ABC.
FUTURE REPORTING STAFF, WILL CHECK STORIES AGAINST
THE ABOVE RELIABLE INFORMATION WHICH IS ALWAYS INFALLIBLE
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