turn-off sparks protest, by Sunanda Creagh - 19th
The Sydney Morning Herald)
only community TV station will be forced to switch
off for good at midnight - even though its rival won't
be able to take over until next year.
31, which gets around 1.3 million viewers a month,
has been running under temporary licences for 10 years,
showing ethnic programming, activist news and seniors'
yesterday's meeting of the Australian Broadcasting
Authority (ABA) handed Sydney's first permanent community
TV licence to newcomers TV Sydney, a consortium of
universities and youth groups. But they won't be able
to get up and running until next year.
decision sparked a small protest by Channel 31 workers
outside The Sydney Morning Herald's office this afternoon.
Reynold, vice president of the CTS board, the volunteer
group which runs Channel 31, says he's outraged by
the ABA's decision.
have no real background or experience in community
TV, or supported the development of it over the last
ten years," he said. "It's theft."
said his Channel 31's application was backed by NSW
Premier Bob Carr and Opposition Leader John Brogden.
31 is now seeking a Temporary Spectrum Licence to
allow it to stay on air until TVS starts up.
is threatening to seek an injunction in the Federal
Court if the ABA refuses the request, which is backed
no point having a blank screen for nine months,"
said TVS spokesman James Black, adding that he hoped
many CTS volunteers would jump ship to join TVS, which
includes includes the media school of University of
Western Sydney and the Australian Film Television
and Radio School.
ABA spokesman Donald Robertson said the request for
Channel 31 to keep going until TVS starts has been
unfortunate that there'll be this gap but once a permanent
licence has been allocated, under the broadcasting
act, we can't let someone else broadcast on that channel,''
31 is found by manually tuning your TV set to SBS
on the UHF band, then adjusting the tuning up just
Sydney Morning Herald: Entertainment - TV & Radio
Man Australia: Channel 31 profile