On Aunty by Jonathan Holmes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I make no secret of the fact that I am a fan of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and am an avid consumer of many of its products. I don’t always agree with some of the reporting that comes from the ABC – and in fact some of it I’ve been quite outraged by mistakes, errors, and proffered analysis.
That being said, however, I believe that the ABC is increasingly necessary for contemporary Australian society in light of the increasing polarisation of other media organisations. Though there have been mistakes, not just in the last few years, the ABC remains overwhelmingly impartial in the way it reports, in the way it structures its various offerings, and the array of presenters, reporters, and external commentators it regulars places before the Australian public.
In this short book (more a long essay than anything else), Jonathan Holmes, himself a long-term employee of the ABC, takes an honest look at the recent turmoils of Australia’s public broadcaster. It is a sympathetic yet honest assessment that Holmes produces, not being afraid to acknowledge mistakes as he sees them while also calling out some of the obvious threats from outside the organisation that present a challenge to the very existence of the ABC.
Written in a style that is easily accessible and very entertaining. It is the style of writing and presentation that one has come to expect from Holmes, and fans of his will not be disappointed by what they read here. It is well researched, well referenced, and well written – which when combined make this a volume that should be read by a wide audience.
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