• Sun. Apr 30th, 2023

ABC: Aunty ditches three big Twitter accounts

ByGurinderbir Singh

Feb 15, 2023

The ABC is shutting down three of its Twitter accounts in favour of Facebook pages.

The accounts for Sunday political chat show Insiders, as well as ABC Politics, will be deactivated on Sunday, while the account for News Breakfast will be shut down on Monday.

Both Insiders and News Breakfast’s Facebook pages will continue to run.

A statement from the ABC said activity from the defunct accounts will instead be consolidated and handled by their more popular Twitter account, ABC News.

“We’re closing some of the ABC News program accounts and consolidating our activity in our main Twitter account, @abcnews, which has by far the most activity, followers and engagement with audiences.” said an ABC spokesperson.

 “This is a better use of resources while still serving audiences on this platform.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, the Insiders account @InsidersABC had 146,400 followers, @BreakfastNews 134,800 followers, and @politicsabc 43,500 followers.

While the ABC News account, @abcnews, trumps all three with 2.1m followers.

Unlike Twitter, Facebook allows for page administrators to have greater control of the content in comment sections under posts.

Some Twitter users are unhappy at a lack of clarity as to exactly why the national broadcaster is appearing to favour Facebook.

“Wow. A big call to disregard your followers on Twitter. Perhaps you‘re hearing a few too many home truths about the program’s direction,” said one user on the News Breakfast Twitter page.

Replies were similar to a post about the page closure on the Insiders account, one user writing “How does a program, that purports to cover the news and politics from the perspective of ‘insiders’ decide that the social media platform where politics is most discussed is not a place it should have a presence?”

But not all comments have been negative.

“Good idea. Get the hits and eyeballs for all key news programs on one account,” said a reply on the Insiders account.

Another said “To be fair, pushing up numbers on their main account is probably the smart thing to do.”

Insiders has been running on Sunday mornings since 2001, while News Breakfast has graced television screens across the country since 2008.

Insiders was hosted by veteran journalist Barrie Cassidy until 2019 when he was replaced with former Sky News anchor David Speers.

Michael Rowland and Lisa Millar are the current hosts of News Breakfast on weekdays, while Johanna Nicholson and Fauziah Ibrahim take the helm for Weekend Breakfast on Saturdays and Sundays.

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