UPDATE: May 28th 2020 9pm A Council spokesperson has advised the following: "The livestream and supply of the meeting recording is managed entirely by a third-party. Part of the contractor’s role is to index the recording to make it more user-friendly. While conducting that work, the contractor removed parts of the recording where nothing was seen or heard. "We have requested these edits be reinstated to the recording, and instructed our contractor not to do this in future. Council staff did not delete anything from the recording, nor did they instruct anyone to do so." The response above came following a request to Council to answer the following communication from The Beagle: For your information it appears that four minutes and forty seconds of last Tuesday's video record of the Council meeting have been deleted. There is no statement that accompanies the video to warn residents and ratepayers that it is NOT a true and accurate recording.
Can you please advise why instruction has been given to edit the footage and under whose authority did the instruction come. Were the Councillors advised that the footage would be edited before being made publicly available?
In light of the find can you please advise if any previous Council meeting footage has been edited and can you advise if this is now a practice that we can come to expect of Council. Original article prior to the above Council response of May 28th 2020: We have come to expect less and less of our Council meetings but this week we discover that they have trimmed off four minutes and forty eight seconds from their live-stream video archive of the Tuesday May 26th meeting. One might have expected, if there was to be any editing, that there would be a removal of the Mayor saying "Ohhhh Shiiiit" at the 45:16 minute mark but the edits happened around what staff might have considered 'dead time". The first edit was during the wait for Clr Brown to renter the meeting after excusing himself on an issue of declaration of interest. The next two sections that were edited were most likely done to remove the "dead camera time" being the time it took for the Mayor to seek guidance on how to deal with a point of order against Clr Mayne. What can be heard on the video below is the audio of the missing video feed where, after the second time, they pause for clarification. What is deleted from Council's official record is where Councilor Brown says "He shuts up", to which Clr Mayne responds "Well that's helpful" and laughs. While it is not of great import the fact is that the Council video record has been tampered with. It is not a true and accurate record. Under who's authority and with what justification? The General Manager, Catherine Dale, is in charge of Communications so most likely this comes under her watch. For the sake of four minutes and forty eight seconds of video that shows councillors milling about waiting for an outcome it is now considered that Council has crossed a line with these edits where anyone watching any archival Council meeting records might wonder exactly what has been edited out. There is NO statement on the video to say that it has been edited and that it is NOT a true account of the meeting. UPDATE: May 28th 2020 9pm NOTE THAT THIS VIDEO IS TEMPORARILY UNAVAILABLE WHILST THE FULL VIDEO RECORD OF COUNCILS MEETING IS RESTORED TO THEIR ARCHIVES.
VIDEO: Ordinary Meeting of Eurobodalla Council Date: May 26th 2020
CCS20/022 Sale of Council Land - Surfside
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NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Australia licence.
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