Yeah, you’re probably right.
As for the ABC (and SBS) radio channels on DVB-T, I rarely listen to them. But they probably do serve a purpose: Ensuring that ABC/SBS Radio is available to all Australians in some form or another, since not everyone is in the same “metropolitan Australia privilege” position of being able to get stations like Double J & SBS PopAsia on DAB+ and online streaming.
Yeah, that’s correct. Of course early last decade we had the commercial networks passing off home shopping channels as “datacasting” but I don’t think that really counts.
Yes I believe the spare channel is VHF 10 for the main transmitters in metro areas, not so sure about UHF translators and regional areas.
In an ideal world, that 6th multiplex would be used for community television AND other things like State/Federal Parliament which probably wouldn’t ever receive MAFS-like ratings but still provide a valuable public service.
You could even use those lengthy periods of time that Parliament is in recess to fill the blank space (and make some money which helps to keep those Parliament broadcasts on-air) with some special event programming. To drum up all but one example which I might try and spin-off into a mock for the relevant thread at a later date: How good would it be if the team at AFTRS not only had Show Radio on 107.9FM, but also Show TV in Sydney/NSW around Easter each year?!