ABC News is a national news service produced by the News and Current Affairs division of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation - the division is responsible for all newsgathering and production of news output for ABC television, radio and online services. Although the ABC is funded by the Australian Government, the editorial independence of the ABC is ensured through law. .
The flagship radio news programs, AM and PM are broadcast over various ABC radio outlets. The division also runs ABC NewsRadio, Australia's only 24-hour continuous news radio channel.
ABC television news bulletins are broadcast throughout the day - including the flagship nightly 7pm state-based bulletins. Bulletins focus strongly on issues of state relevance, with a greater inclusion of national and international news items than are found in the news bulletins of commercial broadcasters.
ABC News Breakfast is broadcast each weekday from 6am - 9am on ABC2, presented by Virginia Trioli and Joe O'Brien, with sports presenter Paul Kennedy and weather presenter Vanessa O'Hanlon. The programme, broadcast from the ABC's Melbourne studios, is also simulcast online and on the Australia Network in the Asia Pacific region.
The Midday Report is broadcast each weekday at 12pm on ABC1, presented by Ros Childs. The bulletin airs live from the ABC's main national news studios at Ultimo in Sydney to eastern states and on tape delay to central states. A separate live bulletin is produced for Western Australia two hours after the original broadcast, as the delay was deemed too long to remain up-to-date.
Nicole Chettle is the main fill in newsreader for the Midday Report.
The bulletin was launched in February 2005 to replace the less succesful Midday News and Business, proceeded in turn by the long-running World at Noon. The Midday Report features a daily financial report presented by a rotating team of reporters including Rebecca Hyam, Sue Lannin, Melissa Hamilton, Alicia Barry, Brigid Glanville and Simon Palan.
Regular dedicated news bulletins are produced and broadcast for Australia Network in the Asia Pacific region. Bulletins are presented from Melbourne by Beverley O'Connor and feature reports from ABC correspondents based in and around the area.
National news updates are presented on ABC1 throughout the day with evening updates presented live in most states by the respective state news anchors. National updates are also broadcast on ABC2 and are available on demand via ABC News Online.
ABC News' flagship 7pm bulletin is produced and presented every night from the capital city of each state and territory, and feature national financial and sport bulletins presented on weeknights by Alan Kohler in Melbourne and Peter Wilkins in Sydney respectively.
ABC News Canberra is presented from the ABC's Dickson studios by Virginia Hausegger on weeknights. Weekend bulletins are presented by Craig Allen with sports presenter Chris Kimball. Weekday weather forecasts are presented by Mark Carmody.
ABC News New South Wales is presented from the ABC's Ultimo studios by Juanita Phillips on weeknights and Jeremy Fernandez on weekends (the regular weekend anchor, Felicity Davey, is currently on maternity leave). Weekday weather forecasts are presented by Graham Creed. Fill-in anchors for the 7pm bulletin include Tamara Oudyn and Deborah Rice.
ABC News Northern Territory is presented from ABC Northern's Darwin studios by either Laetitia Lemke or Louisa Rebgetz. Fill-in presenters for the 7pm bulletin include Adrienne Francis and Margie Smithurst.
ABC News Queensland is presented from the ABC studio at Network Ten's Mount Coot-tha facilities by David Curnow on weeknights and Anne Kreuger at weekends. Weekday weather forecasts are presented by Jenny Woodward.
ABC News South Australia is presented from the ABC's Collinswood studios by Dominique Schwartz on weeknights. Weekend bulletins are presented by Jessica Schacht with sports presenter Neil Cross.
Previous anchors of the Adelaide-based bulletin have included Michael Smyth, Jane Doyle, Clive Hale, Kelly Nestor, Rebecca Morse, Glenn Taylor, Maxine McKew, Virginia Hausegger, Janice Peterson and John Lombard.
ABC News Tasmania is presented from the ABC's Hobart studios by Peter Gee on weeknights and Barbara Cox on weekends. Weekday weather forecasts are presented by Simon McCulloch.
ABC News Victoria is presented from ABC Victoria's Southbank studios by Ian Henderson on weeknights and Susie Reines on weekends (regular weekend anchor Tamara Oudyn is currently on maternity leave). Weekday weather forecasts are presented by Paul Higgins.
ABC News Western Australia is presented from ABC WA's East Perth studios by Karina Carvalho on weeknights and Craig Smart at weekends. Weekday weather forecasts are presented by Russell Woolf while Trevor Jenkins presents local sports news at weekends.
The news theme used from 1956 to 1985 was "Majestic Fanfare", composed by Charles Williams. From 1956 until the early '80s the version used was abridged version performed by the Queen's Hall Light Orchestra, from a recording made in 1943. Each bulletin opened with a clip from the top story of the day, with the title "ABC News" superimposed over the footage. Later, this onscreen approach was replaced by a generic graphic title sequence. In 1982, to celebrate the ABC's 50th anniversary, a new version of the theme was commissioned, which incorporated both orchestral and new electronic elements. With the exception of a period in the mid-'80s, during which several synthesised themes were trialled in succession, this was used on radio until August 1988, and on television until early 1985. A reworking of "Majestic Fanfare" was written by Richard Mills and recorded in 1988 by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra.
The 1988 orchestration is still used exclusively for ABC's radio news bulletins across all stations, except Triple J, which uses a 1991 remix of the original "Majestic Fanfare", and NewsRadio, which has always used specially-composed themes since its inception.
The ABC refreshed its structure and look in 1985 when the 7 o'clock news and the following current affairs programme (at that time, Nationwide) were combined to form ABC National (usually known as "The National"). The news theme used was "Best Endeavours", written by Alan Hawkshaw. This piece of music was at that time, and is still, the theme for Channel 4 News in the UK.
After The National was deemed unsuccessful, that same year the news was refreshed again with a new set, graphics, and theme, composed by Tony Ansell & Peter Wall. This theme was used for almost 20 years. In 1997, the set was updated and the theme was re-recorded; nothing else was changed, however.
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The current theme, changed on Australia Day (26 January) 2005, was written by Martin Armiger and bears a slight resemblance to the original Majestic Fanfare. Two orange blocks come in from either side of a globe and the title descends from under the globe. At the same time the set and graphics received a major overhaul, and the current package has been used to the present.
In January 2010 the ABC announced that a dedicated 24-hour digital television news channel will be launched later in the year. It will broadcast on the current ABC HD channel. The ABC states that it will be "Australia's first free-to-air 24-hour television news channel", and will also feature a number of new news and current affairs programs.