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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 7

(Question No. 3966)

Mr Wright asked the Minister for Communications, upon notice, on 8 May 1986:

(1) How many federal (a) Government and (b) Opposition members have been interviewed on the A.B.C. (i) A.M. program and (ii) P.M. program since 1 January 1985.

(2) What was the time given to (a) Government and (b) Opposition members.

(3) How many interviews other than with federal parliamentarians were conducted which were in their tenor (a) anti-federal Government and (b) pro-federal Government.

Mr Duffy —The following answer to the honourable member's question is based upon information provided by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation:

(1) Although the A.B.C. records the names of all interviewees who appear on A.M. and P.M., it would be an unreasonable strain on limited A.B.C. resources to go back through the Corporation's records to provide the A.B.C. information sought.

(2) The same considerations apply as in (1). However, it would be expected that members of the Government are interviewed or reported more frequently than are members of the Opposition.

(3) Again the same considerations as in (1) apply. Because the A.B.C. destroys tapes of interviews 6 weeks after the date of broadcast, in accordance with 117a (2) of the Broadcasting Act 1942, they are not in a position to make judgments necessary to answer the question.