Conroy declines Nine Perth request for Origin on multichannel

Senator Conroy’s office has denied an exemption request from WIN-owned Channel Nine Perth to play the third State of Origin on one of its multichannels such as GEM.

Channel Nine Perth could have played the match at a friendlier timeslot if the Minister’s office had given his approval.

Until the new-look anti-siphoning list has been legislated some broadcasters have applied for sports exemptions, many of which have been approved including Wimbledon‘s men’s and women’s singles quarter-finals, semi-finals and finals, scheduled on 7TWO.

But not all events are as lucky.

A spokesperson for Channel Nine Perth told TV Tonight, “We inquired of the Minister’s office but his hands are tied by the legislation, State of Origin is a Tier A sport and until Perth switches off the analog service, the broadcaster is required to simulcast in analog and digital on the main channel.”

Earlier this month Nine trialled the State of Origin at a 9:30pm timeslot to see how it would fare with the audience.

“When Perth delivers audience numbers that warrants a live broadcast of the State of Origin, Ch9 Perth will schedule to suit audience demand,” the spokesperson said.

“The broadcast of Origin II at 9.30pm WAST has given our Network Head of Programming the confidence to bring Origin III back to 8.30pm to see whether the Perth audience support the time slot.

“When the antisiphoning legislation changes, there may be more flexibility but until the analog services switch off, broadcasters are required to ensure that those viewers who do not have access to digital services do have access to the sports on the Antisiphoning list.”

So it’s a no from Conroy’s office, but a better time of 8:30pm nonetheless.


  1. Try putting it on before people have watched it on Fox or live at the pub and you might get a true relection of interest!
    As MJL says SOO has been classified as a B tier event so this story is a fabrication!

  2. Hmmmm, Origin in native HD on Foxtel @ 8.30pm or blurry SD full of ads on 9 @ 8.30pm… it’s no contest. FTA channels need to pick up their game, quickly. Others are right though – something isn’t right here. My money is on 9 doing the lying to cover up their continual poor programming decisions. And lets not even start with the constant on-air problems coming out of their playout centre !

  3. Isn’t GEM HD? So the people of Perth would be able to see the game in High Definition. Come on Senator Conroy, do the right thing.

  4. Despite the fuss, why blame the Govt, there is nothing stopping WIN owned STW9 showing it earlier on the main channel. This smells of WIN trying to get viewers to blame the Govt instead of WIN. If Nine direclty owned STW9 it would easily be on at 7.30pm on the main channel (albeit on a 2 hour delay) much the same as Nine owned GTV9 screens it live in Melbourne. And as to when analogue gets switched off, there would be nothing stopping whoever owns STW9 then from screening it at 5.30pm live Perth time, thats if Nine still have the rights then?

  5. Secret Squïrrel

    Someone at either the Minister’s office or WIN Perth is telling fibs. SOO is in the same category as the Wimbledon finals matches. If an exemption was able to be granted for 14 tennis matches it could also be given for one RL game.

    That said, I’m actually surprised that WIN are giving the SOO tree another shake as the ratings weren’t that great last time. Hopefully the earlier slot will encourage a few more to hold off and watch the game on TV.

  6. This game is one that would attract viewers who may not follow the sport. People who love sport are going to watch any type of sport to avoid watching the news. There are plenty of options to have a telecast of this game. I can not believe no one has the common sense to realise Perth isnt what it was 10 years ago there are people in WA from all over the world icluding alot from the eastern states who have followed league all their lives. I cant see how playing Skippy on a sunday instead of the match of the round can be good marketing while 7 and ten have AFL on let alone not telecasting the biggest NRL game of the year Live. Some one needs the sack and bring in someone with vision and change.T

    They say they dont get the ratings there are a few reasons for that:
    1. Most people are on their way to bed by the time they get it on
    2. they dont advertise the the time slot enough
    3. keen supporters listen to it live and go to bed and record the game

    I hope channel nine loses the rights let fox have all the games because channel at least you would have a chice to watch it or not

  7. A stupid decision from a stupid government with no clue about good policy. The only winner here is, umm, hmmm, no one. What harm would it do in letting nine show it on GEM? Unbelievable.

  8. @ Bella and every other ignoramus that has no idea about the correct name for the most watched football code on Australian television…. Rugby is short for Rugby Union. Rugby Union was referred to as just ‘rugby’ for 50 odd years before League was even invented.

    The NRL – National Rugby League or ARL’s State of Origin is called League FFS!

    Rugby League is one of two ‘rugby’ codes but it is never referred to as just ‘rugby’.

  9. @Angus Kidman

    Becuase Origin is a proposed future Tier B event then 9 would not need to simulcast it on their main channel. They could show it exclsively live on GO or GEM.

    The list I posted earler is accurate as I checked with the department to make sure Origin wasn’t changed to Tier A since it was published in November last year..

    The senator has been giving exemptions to proposed future Tier B events a lot this year like Wimbledon, V8’s and AFL. EG: 7 are showing AFL exclusively live on 7MATE in Sydney and Brisbane on Friday night.

    I wouldn’t be too quick to blame Senator Conroy either as some are doing. To blame him you would need proof a request was actually made.

  10. Whilst I wouldn’t watch NRL or AFL if it was the only thing on, one would think that the gov’t would be wanting to promote & push digital as much as possible. No?
    What better way than to have it “live” or earlier on a digital channel and whenever on the analog channel?
    3D? What a scam.

  11. Should Conroy put the fans/viewers first. People who want to watch it live on GEM should be allowed to. Make teh ruling, yes you can show it this year on GEM, but you still have to go ahead with plans to air it at 8:30 on 9. Who does this decision help, it only hurts viewers who want to watch it.

  12. billy ray valentine

    angus – this permission is just a notice in the gazette – very easy to be done if they wanted to.
    something does not add up in this story..

  13. Angus Kidman

    @MJL — true re Tier B, but until the legislation actually passes Tier B sports still require permission if they’re not going to be simulcast on analog and digital.

  14. Bizarre….how does this help FTA viewers? Surely they should be allowed to show it live on GEM and then later (8:30 or 9:30) on nine.

    The Origin is Tier B!!!

    Hopefullty Ten/One get the NRL rights next….

  15. It would have been even more wierd that the State of Origin could have been in HD in Perth but standard definition in its prime markets?

  16. David @ Green Point

    We’ve just upgraded to a 3D wide screen with internet facilities… what happened to the 3D telecasts of the State of O?

    Just a oncer so Gerry could get some money via Samsung?????

  17. I forgot to add that all events the minister has been giving exemptions to are Tier B which is clearly what Origin is according to the site and list in PDF.

    So someone isn’t telling the truth. But who and why?

  18. Origin is not Tier A.

    It is Tier B according to the ministers site

  19. I don’t follow rugby. But it does prove popular with quite a few people here in Perth. Last Friday 15000 people sat pouring rain to watch Brisbane and South Sydney play a game in Perth.

  20. 8:30? 9:30? Hardly matters too much. STW9 seemingly has so few viewers across the board. News, ACA, The Block etc., etc., often less than half the number watching 7 or 10. Even ABC News beat The Block.

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