When we were in Vietnam, we became a bit hungry for Australian news. Vietnam's internet then was painfully slow dial up and checking an Australian media site was not worth trying. Bringing up an email page was as best as could be managed, and that took time. I expect Vietnam has moved on.
But hey, satellite or cable tv brought us Australia TV to our hotel rooms. Maybe we received some news headlines, but hour after hour, day after day, were repeats of the Australian soap tv show A Country Practice. It became such a laughing point.
That was when a private company, the Channel 7 network, had the rights to broadcast Australian tv to Asia/Pacific countries. I can't recall if subsequently the ABC was awarded the broadcasting contract or won it in a tender. Regardless, the ABC has been broadcasting tv of a high standard to the Asia/Pacific for many years now.
Then it came up for tender and the publicly owned Australian Broadcasting Corporation must tender against Rupert Murdoch's Sky TV. It appears to be a very divisive matter within our Federal government, seeming that our foreign minister KRudd supports Sky TV. But leaks from the government have become so bad, the whole process has been cancelled and ABC has the rights to broadcast for the next six months.
Why on earth would one of Rupert's propaganda machines be considered for broadcasting Australian tv to immediate world? Could anyone accuse the ABC of not doing a good job with the Australia Network? Here is a link to today's programme guide. Note the diverse range of programmes with something for everyone.
I'd expect the Liberal Party to want a big business to run the Australia Network, but why is the Labor Party pushing it? Odd business indeed.