ABC buckles to monarchist pressure
Written by ACM   
Tuesday, 29 May 2012

ABC has buckled  to monarchist pressure and will now  screen Live coverage of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee River Pageant on Sunday night in the Eastern States on ABC1 with Live coverage across Australia on ABC News 24, according to a report by  David Knox in TV Tonight , 28 May 2012.  The Herald Sun's Colin Vickery described it as a backflip.

The ABC had been forced into an "about-face" after it was slammed for shunning the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations, reported Colin Vickery in the Herald Sun (“ABC backflip on Queen celebrations”, 29/5). 

This followed his report on the day before (“No joy over ABC's Diamond Jubilee coverage” 28/5)
This stated that the  ABC had been slammed for shunning the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations this weekend.  

The snub, it said , had  come in spite of the fact that last year’s wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton was one of the biggest TV events of the past decade. 

Reporting that ABC TV viewers will miss the spectacular Diamond Jubilee Pageant – with 1000 boats travelling down the Thames River, including  a contingent of Australian Surf Lifesavers.

Instead the ABC planned  a repeat of raunchy Warren Beatty movie Shampoo instead.

...appalled, astounded....


The newspaper reported Australians for Constitutional Monarchy head, Professor David Flint, had  “savaged” the ABC for the snub. “I think it is absolutely appalling and astounding,” Professor Flint told the Herald Sun. 

“I assumed the ABC was going to at least broadcast the central events, as you would expect them to do a royal wedding or a coronation.” 


[ The Daily Mail's portrayal of the Royal Barge ] it began...

This affair began when we learned last Friday that the crucial events of the Diamond Jubilee Central Weekend were not to be broadcast live on ABCTV. We were informed that news reports would be shown on ABC News 24, which many people cannot see. We were told it would not be a continuous live transmission.

We immediately prepared a detailed letter recalling the ABC’s obligations to the nation, and requesting this decision be reversed. This was sent by mail, fax and email to the Chairman, the Managing Director and the ABC Board.

We have heard nothing from the ABC. Accordingly we used the considerable internet resources of ACM  to mount a challenge, relying on traditional media outlets beginning wiht the press. A report by Tim Barlass first appeared in the Sun Herald  and then in interstate newspapers. The story was taken up by talk back radio. The pressure on the ABC increased. We were preparing to intensify the campaignif the ABC did not relent.   

David Knox says most media articles had “neglected to acknowledge ABC was always going to have coverage via ABC News 24.” It was not, or at least, this is not what we were told before we were diverted, protesting,  to a message bank. In fact we were told not to expect a Live transmission, but reports during the news. That was made very clear to us. There is a world of difference between these and in in any event many, if not most, Australians cannot receive ABC News 24. 

The ABC has now decided that ABC1′s previously scheduled 1975 movie Shampoo is to be replaced by Live coverage of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee River Pageant. The following is apparently from the ABC announcement. Surprisingly, it was not sent to us.

in the ABC’s own words…


On Sunday night (June 3) we will have the River Pageant on ABC1 from 22.30pm to 3.00 am – live coverage in the Eastern States- live/delayed in other states.

On ABC News 24 it will run live from 22.30pm to 3am.On Monday night (June 4) on ABC1 we will have the Highlights package from 6-7pm as already announced. (The rights to the concert are not available)

On Tuesday night (June 5) we will have coverage of arrivals at St Paul’s Cathedral on ABC1 from 6-7pm – Live in Eastern states, delayed in other states.

On ABC1 from 22.30pm to 00.45am the coverage will include the carriage procession, gun salute, the palace balcony appearance etc. Live in Eastern States, delayed in other states.

On ABC News 24 the live coverage will run from 7pm including the Thanksgiving Service, through to 00.45am.

On Wednesday night (June 6) – ABC1 will have the highlights package from 6-7pm as already announced.

On Thursday night (June 7) – ABC1 will have a repeat of The Diamond Queen Ep 1 at 6:00pmOn Friday night (June 8 ) – ABC1 will have a repeat of The Diamond Queen Ep 2 at 6:00pm

On Saturday night (June 9) – ABC1 will have a repeat of The Diamond Queen Ep 3 at 5:30pm


…thank you..

This conclusion is not perfect. We do not understand why the broadcast of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee River Pageant should be delayed in such states as Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory. That said, it is obviously better than no broadcast.

We would have preferred the Thanksgiving service to be shown on ABC 1. Of course, those who do not have access to ABC News 24 can watch this on the A-PAC channel either on Foxtel or on the Internet. While we once again compliment Sky Television for ensuring that all the relevant events will be broadcast on the A-Pac channel, it has to be remembered that not everyone has access to either the subscription service or to the internet.

When we became aware of the ABC's original decision we realised that we had to have the active support of our considerable support base. This consists of more than 20,000 members and our more than 35,000 Facebook fans or “likes”. By using the resources of the Internet, we were able to place text, images and videos on our site, Facebook and in an e-newsletter to subscribers. It is fortunate indeed that we have such a strong presence on the Internet, probably the strongest of any constitutional monarchist organization in the world.

We thank the significant number of members and fans who rose to the occasion, or were planning to do so.

In many ways these events recall the time when ACM organised the referendum campaign. This was run in many ways along military lines. Above all, the affair was a reminder of the need to proceed on the basis of sound principles, and to maintain a strong and sophisticated organisational structure, supported by the latest technology, so that we are always ready to provide effective opposition to any attempt to reduce the role and influence of the Crown in the constitutional system, or to shred our Flag.