Online material more concerning to Australians than what’s shown on TV | ACMA

Online material more concerning to Australians than what’s shown on TV

Digital Australians, our recently released report on how online Australians feel about the ever-increasing use of digital media, shows that more people are concerned about content available on the internet than on television.

Pass me the remote-concerns about what is shown on television

Those surveyed for the report were asked whether they had any concerns about what is shown on television. More than half-56 per cent-didn't have any concerns at all.

The 44 per cent who did have concerns about television content were asked to select up to three issues that they had concerns about.

Overall, online Australians were most concerned about excessive advertising (20 per cent), violence (19 per cent), too many reality programs (16 per cent) and sexual content (14 per cent).

Figure 1: Concerns about what is shown on television, 2011
Figure 1: Concerns about what is shown on television, 2011

Specific concerns about television content
(Proportion of total sample)
%
Too many advertising breaks 20
Violence 19
Too many reality programs 16
Sexual content 14
Coarse language 10
Programs where people are made fun of or tricked 8
Themes like racism, suicide and euthanasia 7
Drug use/drug references 7
Too much sport 7
Not enough program choice 6
Nudity 6
Too many American/British programs 3
Other 3

Source: ACMA, Digital Australians online survey, 2011. Do you have any concerns about what is shown on TV?
Base: Total sample, n=1,250.
Which of the following are you concerned about on TV? Please select the three issues that you are most concerned about (you may pick less than three if appropriate).
Base: Total sample, n=1,250.

Demographic differences

Older respondents were more likely to have concerns about television content than were younger respondents.

Figure 2: Have concerns about what is shown on television by age, 2011

Figure 2: Have concerns about what is shown on television by age, 2011
Source: ACMA, Digital Australians online survey, 2011. Do you have any concerns about what is shown on TV?
Base: Total sample, n=1,250.
Note: Blue numbers represent differences that are significantly higher and red numbers significantly lower.

Women (50 per cent) were also more likely to have concerns about television content than were men (38 per cent), especially about:

  • violence on television (25 per cent, compared with 13 per cent of men)
  • sexual content on television (19 per cent, compared with nine per cent of men).

Men were more likely than women to be concerned about:

  • too many American/British programs on television (five per cent, compared with one per cent of women).

While parents with children under 18 were no more likely to have concerns about television than other respondents, they were more likely than other adults to be concerned about:

  • sexual content on television (19 per cent, compared with 12 per cent of other adults)
  • nudity on television (10 per cent, compared with four per cent of other adults).

A tangled web-concerns about what is on the internet

Online Australians generally reported a greater level of concern about content on the internet than on television (56 per cent, compared with 44 per cent for television).

Respondents who did have concerns about internet content were asked to select up to three issues that they had concerns about.

Overall, online Australians were most concerned about identity fraud/others getting access to personal details (31 per cent), websites showing abuse of children (27 per cent), and computer viruses/security (21 per cent).

Figure 3: Concerns about what is on the internet, 2011

Concerns about what is on the internet, 2011

Specific concerns about television content
(Proportion of total sample)
%
Identity fraud/others getting access to my personal details 31
Websites showing abuse of children 27
Computer viruses/security 21
Personal information that companies/governments may hold about me 11
Sexual content 11
Websites instructing on committing crimes 11
Websites instructing how to commit suicide/self-harm 10
Gambling on the internet 8
Violence 7
Themes like racism, suicide and euthanasia 5
Nudity 5
Too much advertising 5
Content where people are made fun of or tricked 4
Poor quality content 3
Drug use/drug references 3
Coarse language 2
Other 1

Source: ACMA, Digital Australians online survey, 2011.
Do you have any concerns about what is on the internet?
Base: Total sample, n=1,250.

Which of the following are you concerned about on the internet? Please select the three issues that you are most concerned about (you may pick less than three if appropriate).
Base: Total sample, n=1,250

Demographic differences

Women (67 per cent) were more likely to have concerns about what is on the internet than men (44 per cent), although there were no significant differences for the types of concerns identified.

Parents with children under 18 (63 per cent) were also more likely to be concerned than other adults (53 per cent). Similar to the concerns with television, parents with children under 18 were more likely than other adults to report concerns about:

  • sexual content on the internet (17 per cent, compared with eight per cent of other adults)
  • nudity on the internet (eight per cent, compared with four per cent of other adults).

Like adults generally, the top concerns for parents about the internet were identity fraud, websites showing abuse of children and computer security. There were no significant differences by age.

You can access the full Digital Australians report here.

Last updated: 25 May 2017