Public health advocate Professor Mike Daube writes:
The finals this weekend of the KFC T20 Big Bash could have been better (especially if the Perth Scorchers had won), but the cricket was lively and would have made exciting viewing for many children as they watched all the KFC promos, as well as seeing their sporting idols associate themselves with KFC products in a steady flow of advertisements throughout the game.
But was it necessary for Foxtel to interrupt its telecast of the game for an interview with the Chief Marketing Officer of KFC, so that she could promote the product as an essential feature of the Australian summer, and tell us all about the modest charitable donations KFC makes as part of its promotional program?
Amazingly, the interview ran not only during the periods between play, but while the game itself was on – preventing the commentators from deliveries during the game.
Does money change hands directly or indirectly for this kind of blatant demonstration that promoting junk food is more important than televising sport?
ACMA (the Australian Communications Media Authority) is so dozy on issues like this that there seems little point in complaining to the body that is notionally charged with overseeing broadcasting standards.
What next? Instant replays of the best promotional interview by a sponsor?
• Professor Mike Daube is Director, Public Health Advocacy Institute, Curtin University