After Radio Birdman and the director of their documentary, Descent into the Maelstrom – The Radio Birdman Story, called for support after the ABC declined to acquire the film, the broadcaster has spoken to The Music regarding their decision.
A spokesperson for the ABC acknowledged that "the ABC did opt to pass on the documentary" before saying that "as a responsible public broadcaster, we don’t acquire content that we do not have a need for".
"In this case, it didn’t make sense to spend money on a 110-minute documentary that did not meet our criteria for either audience appeal or our quality standards," the statement reads.
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The comment comes after Radio Birdman posted a statement on Facebook last month saying they are "disappointed but not really surprised" by the ABC's decision and encouraged fans to lodge complaints with the broadcaster.
Labour MP, Anthony Albanese, also joined in the campaign confirming his support for the cause.
Read the full statement from the ABC below.
The ABC did opt to pass on the documentary. As a responsible public broadcaster, we don’t acquire content that we do not have a need for. In this case, it didn’t make sense to spend money on a 110-minute documentary that did not meet our criteria for either audience appeal or our quality standards. We regularly make such decisions in line with our budget and our priority of commissioning new and distinctive content for audiences.
Radio Birdman played an important role in Australia’s music history and the development of our independent music scene. Credit to them for their high energy, uncompromising attitude and, as one prominent fan put it, “outlaw reputation”. But there are so many significant Australian bands and only so much time in the day. Our slate for Ausmusic Month is already filled with programs celebrating Australian music and artists, including a new music show, live performances, drama series and documentaries about Australian artists past and present, plus our unrivalled commitment to emerging and established Australian musicians on triple j, Double J and triple j Unearthed. We will also offer new children’s content aimed at inspiring Australia’s next generations of musicians and music lovers.
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Manning Bar, Camperdown