#1057 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 5 April 2015
Free TV is the public voice of Australia’s commercial free-to-air television industry on a range of issues including content regulation.
Free TV is reviewing the Television Code of Practice which could see M-rated programs – with nudity, sex, violence and swearing – screening at 7.30pm when many children are watching with little or no supervision.
The industry body also wants to abolish all G time zones, allow MA15+ programs to screen from 8.30pm, reclassify extremely violent programs as MA15+, allow alcohol and gambling ads from 7.30pm, and limit the ability of viewers to lodge a complaint.
The changes would make it much harder for busy parents to ensure their children view wholesome programs.
A review in 2009 tried unsuccessfully to abolish all G time slots. Submissions to the current review closed on Good Friday. It remains to be seen to what degree television content standards are shaped by community morals or corporate money.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.