ABC (Australia)

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Not to be confused with the American Broadcasting Company

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation, shortened to ABC is the state-owned public broadcaster in Australia. The ABC is operated on a budget of over $1 Billion (Australian) [1] and has been criticized for its left-leaning bias by conservative figureheads in Australia.[2]


The ABC originally started out as a commercial radio network called the Australian Broadcasting Company in 1923. In 1932, the company was nationalized under the Australian Broadcasting Commission Act.[3][4] It started broadcasting as a television service in 1956 and in the 2000s digital channels were added such as ABC2.


The ABC is completely funded by the Federal Government except for a small percentage which is generated through the profit of items sold in the ABC shop such as DVD's. The operating budget for the ABC is slightly over $1 Billion according to the latest Government budget data.[5]

Ratings and programs

As it is not a commercial network it does not necessarily go for high rating programs but concentrates much of its air time on news and current affair programs such as 7:30, Four Corners, Lateline and the ABC News as well as many local programs such as children's programs from 6am to 10am every weekday.[6] It consistently polls around 15 – 20% of the overall population share every day.[7][8]

Politics and allegations of bias

The ABC been accused by Australian conservatives over allegations of left-wing bias in its journalism, especially when it over represents leftist issues in Australia such as immigration, republicanism, multiculturalism, reconciliation and its support for the centre-left Australian Labor Party over the conservative Liberal Party of Australia.[9][10] Conservative commentators in Australia such as Andrew Bolt as well as Coalition members have stated that they believe the ABC to contain bias from the Left.[11] John Howard who was the Liberal Party Prime Minister of Australia from 1996 – 2007 had cut the funding to the ABC by close to 10% for what he believed to be left-wing bias. In a 2004 poll of journalists the ABC came in second to the question of "the most politically biased media organisation in Australia".[12]