Getting a ticket to the world party: televising soccer in Australia

David Rowe, Callum Gilmour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Australia currently has the world's most restrictive legislation designed to protect sports content of national and cultural significance from subscription television exclusivity. Despite this powerful 'anti-siphoning' regime, association football (soccer) has been systematically removed from Australian free-to-air television screens through a combination of regulatory neglect and influence peddling; a lingering ethnocentric disdain for the sport; an increasingly under-funded public broadcasting sector, and the encroachment of a global media conglomerate promoting an internationally ascendant model of 'user-pays' audience aggregation. In addressing the position of televised soccer in Australia, this article analyses the country's peculiar ensemble of social, cultural, political and economic influences that is retarding the long-term development of the sport within a highly competitive national 'landscape'. We argue that, for it to become a full player in the 'world game' and even in its 'own backyard', soccer in Australia requires proper representation within the still powerful sphere of free-to-air television.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-26
Number of pages18
JournalSoccer and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes

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