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Sky News denies targeting Victorian minister in WIN campaign

Sky News owner, the Australian News Channel, has rejected concerns the advertising campaign launched in regional Victoria today is aimed at the state government minister responsible for banning the station across Melbourne’s railway network.

The Bendigo Advertiser this morning reported the advertisements for Sky News appearing on regional TV network WIN had appeared only in the newspaper which covers the regional electorate of Victorian transport minister, Jacinta Allen.

A Sky News spokesperson rejected suggestions the advert was aimed at Allen, telling Mumbrella: “Today’s advertisement in the Bendigo Advertiser is a part of a media campaign across a number of regional markets ahead of the launch of Sky News on WIN.”

Mumbrella understands the campaign promoting Sky News will run across print, digital and out of home in all of WIN’s markets ahead of the news channel’s regional free to air launch on September 2.

Choosing Bendigo as the launch market for the new campaign may have unfortunate as Blair Cottrell, who triggered the government ban after his appearance on Sky News, was prominent in the 2015 campaign to halt the construction of a mosque in the Victorian regional city.

Earlier this year, Cottrell and an associate were convicted and fined $2,000 for staging a mock beheading outside the Bendigo City Council offices during the protests.

Allen, who is the state minister for Bendigo East, said at the time of imposing the Sky News ban that Cottrell “drove a wedge through our community.

Sky News on Win will launch on channel 83 on WIN’s regional network and channel 53 in Northern NSW and will give regional areas access to both live and time-shifted Sky News programs.

The WIN coverage will be the first time Sky News Australia, which has been running since 1996, will be available without a paywall.

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