HomeAFLAFL Faces Pressure To Keep Games Free-To-Air

AFL Faces Pressure To Keep Games Free-To-Air

AFL Collingwood

AFL Faces Pressure To Keep Games Free-To-Air

The Australian Government has applied pressure to the Australian Football League (AFL), with the aim of keeping live games on free-to-air channels.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the AFL was considering delaying two matches a week by up to two hours, as they aim to give Foxtel more exclusivity with their streaming platform, Kayo Sports.

Additionally, if the plan goes ahead, Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia and Western Australia could see a 30-40% decrease in live-matches on free-to-air TV.

Commenting on the media rights, Federal Communications Minister, Michelle Rowland, said: “I note reports AFL media rights negotiations have entered their final stages.”

“I encourage the AFL Commission and its broadcast and streaming partners to ensure there is no diminution in the availability of AFL matches on free-to-air television under the new deal.

“Free-to-air television is universally available and accessible, and it is an important source of information, education and entertainment for all Australians, regardless of their means or location.

“The broadcasting of key sports competitions like the AFL premiership helps to create shared experiences, foster a collective Australian identity, and contributes to grassroots community-based sports participation.

“All Australians should have the chance to enjoy iconic sporting events live and free, rather than those events being behind paywalls,” she said.

The AFL is also targeting a record fee for its new broadcast deal, with talks said to be entering the final stages, where Foxtel and Seven are reportedly leading the race to keep the rights.

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