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ABC’s loss is RiotACT’s gain: Genevieve Jacobs to join writing team

Ian Bushnell 13 April 2018 110
Genevieve Jacobs

Genevieve Jacobs will be writing for the RiotACT on local issues. Photo: Supplied.

Former ABC radio Mornings presenter Genevieve Jacobs is to join The RiotACT team, developing a series of in-depth articles on key local issues.

Jacobs, who was unceremoniously dumped from the ABC’s line-up last year, said she was looking forward to developing the series of stories with The RiotACT about the issues that she knew connected directly with Canberrans.

“So, the development changes we’re facing, the amount of green space, what kind of say we’ve all got in the direction of our city, issues like the arts versus sport, the kind of pressures we see on regional communities as a result of Canberra’s growth, they’re stories I’ve been enmeshed with through my whole career as journalist in Canberra and in surrounding NSW. And I just want to continue that community conversation,” she said.

Jacobs said The RiotACT offered the opportunity for it to be a genuine conversation and she looked forward to energising the discussion among the readers and asking people for opinions and ideas so it became a true fulcrum for discussion.

“Online provides a really unique opportunity for that to happen, and The RiotACT is such a strongly dedicated local Canberra voice that it is the perfect place to have those conversations,” she said.

Jacobs detected a lot of concern about where Canberra was heading and whether the city was going to do it well.

“People are uncertain about the future, they’re concerned about the level of development, they’re concerned about what of kind of parameters there is around that development and there’s a real need for us all to be consulted and listened to as changes take place and to question what kind of values are being applied to this process, whether we get a better, more sustainable, more livable city out of it at the end,” she said.

But Jacobs said the Government had a fair point that the debate couldn’t be limited to the same voices all the time.

“That’s a particular characteristic of this town. We’ve got a very well informed community who are willing to step up on community issues but we do have to find a way to talk to everybody,” she said.

“The Government is right to a certain degree that it is only the loudest voices that get heard and that’s not true consultation, so it is challenging to find a way to give everyone a voice.

“I hope that what we’re doing here at The RiotACT can be part of that voice because it’s an open forum, people have just got the keyboard in front of them and that’s the fastest way to engage but it’s a worthwhile thing to try to find different ways to communicate.”

With the traditional media fragmenting, Jacob sees a great opportunity for local news.

“Undoubtedly the future is digital, and I think there is a strong opportunity in really localised content,” she said.

“I think what we see less and less of across the old mainstream media outlets, is strong local content as staffing and resources are stripped away – it’s the same stories around the country rather than stories that are strongly connected to local communities. I just think there’s a big chunk of that and that’s where The RiotACT can play a strong role.”

In the latest survey covering the period February 4 to March 31, ABC Radio Canberra lost listeners across all timeslots and fell from the No.1 to No.3 station with a 12.9 per cent share, a drop of 4 percentage points.

“It’s a matter of real regret that the ABC, which has always been so closely entwined with the Canberra community, is going through a period of turbulence and change, perhaps risking a loss of engagement with the Canberra community and Canberra local issues,” she said.

Mornings without Jacobs, fell 2.1 percentage points, while Breakfast, anchored by Dan Bourchier, suffered the biggest drop in the ratings, losing 5.6 percentage points since the previous survey last September.

The deployment of Mornings presenter Adam Shirley to the last half hour of breakfast failed to boost the program.

MIX 106.3, is the new number one station, leading across all time slots with a share of 18.1 per cent, followed by with Hit 104.7 (15.1 per cent).

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110 Responses to ABC’s loss is RiotACT’s gain: Genevieve Jacobs to join writing team
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Jan Gulliver Jan Gulliver 7:33 pm 13 Apr 18

Great news. Miss Genevieve so much on the radio

Deborah Jane Deborah Jane 7:33 pm 13 Apr 18

Fantastic news!!

Christina Cook Christina Cook 7:31 pm 13 Apr 18

Fantastic news Genevieve! ❤️

Robyn Hammond Robyn Hammond 7:10 pm 13 Apr 18

This is just wonderful. Have really missed her.

Amanda Evans Amanda Evans 7:05 pm 13 Apr 18

Fantastic news. I was just wondering about Genevieve today.

Sandra Marie Fisk Sandra Marie Fisk 7:05 pm 13 Apr 18

Great to know Canberra will still benefit from your deep knowledge of Canberra and the community

Mereana Otene Waaka Mereana Otene Waaka 6:45 pm 13 Apr 18

Good. Come and talk about the woeful shortfall in the mental health community and where it intersects with the new family violence laws whereby vulnerable people with issues are put at risk of incarceration rather than given the help they need. You heard here folks and this has been going in for over 20 yrs in the ACT. Time .for this to end.

Linda Charnock Linda Charnock 6:42 pm 13 Apr 18

Excellent😊 miss you on the radio but look forward to reading your stories😊

Theresa MG Theresa MG 6:12 pm 13 Apr 18

Congratulations Genevieve, miss you as do many.

Elizabeth Warren Elizabeth Warren 6:05 pm 13 Apr 18

Yay, we've missed you Genevieve.

Anthony Trump Anthony Trump 5:56 pm 13 Apr 18

That’s brilliant news. Such a trusted and respected journalist- a real asset to the team. Congratulations to all.

Leisha Lister Leisha Lister 5:51 pm 13 Apr 18


Simon Mitchell Simon Mitchell 5:22 pm 13 Apr 18


Petrea Salter Petrea Salter 5:05 pm 13 Apr 18

Exciting times for RiotACT. Maybe you guys should diversify into radio - we need a good station - ABC Canberra has lost their way.

Karen Abbott Karen Abbott 4:53 pm 13 Apr 18

Nice to see GJ back. ABC Canberra shot themselves in the foot with the new lineup. Doesn't work for me and unfortunately the Breakfast just doesn't measure up.

Kristen Davo Kristen Davo 4:36 pm 13 Apr 18

Congratulations Genevieve! You are one talented woman - look forward to reading your pieces.

Yvette Dethridge Yvette Dethridge 3:19 pm 13 Apr 18

Yay! Great news

Janet Ilchef Janet Ilchef 2:40 pm 13 Apr 18

I'm with Pam! I miss Genevieve in the mornings, and look forward to reading her articles. Still miss her on the radio though...

Pam Faulks Pam Faulks 2:39 pm 13 Apr 18

Fantastic! So miss hearing her on the radio.

Mark Parton Mark Parton 1:50 pm 13 Apr 18

That's great news. I look forward to reading her posts.

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