Agencies stop coverage in repeat accreditation row

Reuters and the Associated Press and other international news agencies have suspended coverage of matches and events organised by Cricket Australia because of a dispute over Draconian accreditation terms. The row comes just a year after the same agencies and other media companies boycotted the opening of the previous Australian Test cricket season over similar issues.

The agencies said they would not provide any coverage of the upcoming Test series against New Zealand across text, pictures or TV due to the terms set by the Australian governing body.

The agencies are opposed to Cricket Australia’s policy of imposing limits on the number of updates allowed on the internet and further rules limiting distribution to websites not owned or attached to newspapers or sports magazines.

The agencies also have problems with the terms of the accreditation, saying it does not safeguard the rights for media organisations to editorially criticise or comment on the sport.

“Reuters is regrettably unable to cover the upcoming cricket events in Australia, following unacceptable accreditation terms for journalists imposed by Cricket Australia” said Christoph Pleitgen, Global Head of News Agency for Thomson Reuters.

“As in previous instances, this decision compromises our ability to report independently and objectively, and comes at the expense of global fans and sponsors.

“We would like to resume our timely, premium coverage as quickly as possible, pending a solution to the current situation.”

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