20 October 2011
Digital Australians: content more important than delivery platform
The majority of Australians expect that similar standards should apply to content produced by traditional media organisations, whether print, broadcast or online, according to research released today by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
The new research Digital Australians—Expectations about media content in a converging media environment, examined the impact of the increasing use of digital media on attitudes and expectations about media content.
‘Regardless of delivery platform, familiar media brands are expected by most consumers to meet community standards for taste and decency,’ said ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman. ‘They also expect news stories from reputable news organisations to meet the same journalistic standards for accuracy and fairness, whether in print, broadcast, or online.’
Participants in the research had additional concerns for children using digital media and placed a high priority on protecting children. Parents were more concerned about the internet than were other adults.
Consumer advice and information about the nature of content was considered important whether the content was broadcast or online.
At the same time, Australians are pragmatic about the limited capacity to regulate content distributed over the internet and, with the exception of illegal content, focus group participants expected that much of the content available online would not be regulated.
‘Australians have a high awareness of the ongoing changes in media and communications and regard the developments positively,’ said Mr Chapman. ‘While traditional media like television and radio are still dominant for most, the internet is expanding the media experience for Australians.’
The research found high levels of online news use by all age groups—mostly Australian news sites—and younger adults were leading their older counterparts in general social networking use and watching online video content, mainly from YouTube, and through social networking sites like Facebook.
Keeping up with technology emerged as a possible difficulty for wider use of digital media. Many survey respondents were also not confident about managing the privacy and security risks of being online.
The findings of this community research will contribute to the ACMA’s understanding of what convergence of media and communications means for Australians and the possible implications for regulation and provision of advice to consumers and citizens.
The research was conducted for the ACMA by GfK Bluemoon and comprised 13 focus groups held in metropolitan and regional areas across three states between 20 April and 11 May 2011, followed by an online survey of 1,250 Australians aged 18 years and over between 8 and 22 July
For more information or to arrange an interview please contact: Emma Rossi, Media Manager, on (02) 9334 7719, 0434 652 063 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
# # #
The ACMA is Australia’s regulator for broadcasting, the internet, radiocommunications and telecommunications. The ACMA’s strategic intent is to make communications and media work in Australia’s public interest. For more information: www.acma.gov.au.