An announcement this morning by ABC Radio National presenter, Stephen Crittenden at the beginning of his Religion Report program, about
cuts to ABC Radio National programming
has caused an absolute furore within, and without, the ABC.
Plaudits to Crittenden for doing what he did, to his own detriment, no doubt. Otherwise, we who treasure the informative and stimulating nature of Radio National programming would have been completely unaware of the axing of many content-rich programs until the changes happened on January 26, 2009.
Crittenden was absolutely scathing in his criticism, and rightly so. It’s doubtful he’ll retain employment for his outburst, but what was said, had to be said. The dumbing down of the ABC is clearly under way, and purely for the sake of creating a broader online presence. Here’s a news flash for Mark Scott, Sue Howard and Jane Connors. The internet cannot be listened to whilst driving, and I for one do the majority of my RN listening whilst driving to & from work. I may be an atheist, but I find the Religion Report one of the most informative radio programs of it’s ilk, without once venturing into ecclesiastical God-bothering. Robyn William’s ‘In Conversation’, the ‘Media Report’, ‘Sports Factor’, ‘Radio Eye’ and numerous other documentary or magazine format programs are slated to go. How these programs can be adequately replaced by some re-vamped online presence, completely escapes me.
Time those of us who appreciate Radio National for what it is, start making it known that we prefer being informed, rather than surprised, and rather rich content with personality to bland web pages and scrappy text.