Media release 32/2011
After finding that Nine Network stations TCN and NBN breached their licence
conditions by failing to provide a captioning service, Nine has agreed to put
in place an independent audit system to prevent future breaches. It is the
first time an investigation by the ACMA has received this voluntary undertaking for a captions-related
Under the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (the Act), it is a
condition that commercial television licensees provide a captioning service for
all news and current affairs programs.
However, since 2005, TCN and NBN have breached the captioning requirements
on several occasions. In this case, NBN failed to provide a captioning service
for NBN Evening
News for four broadcasts between 24 June 2010 and 28 July 2010; and
TCN for a segment of A Current
Affair on 28 July 2010.
'Given Nine's patchy track record in providing this essential service, the
ACMA considers that the introduction of outside auditors reflects an
appropriate measure of independence and oversight,' said ACMA Chairman, Chris
Chapman. 'We welcome Nine's initiative in resolving this matter, however, the
ACMA will naturally continue to closely monitor any complaints received about
caption delivery in the broadcasting sector.
The captioning process and delivery at TCN and NBN will be independently
audited. six monthly over a period of two years, and began from 14 March
In addition, the ACMA is working with industry, consumers and government in
the development of indicators for the assessment of caption quality. Quality is
a primary concern of consumers and the captioning working committee is aiming
to develop meaningful, measureable and deliverable quality indicators that are
acceptable to all stakeholders.
To this end, the committee has met regularly following the ACMA captioning
forum in September 2010 with the most recent meeting taking place on 21 March
For more information or to arrange an interview please contact: Emma Rossi,
Media Manager, on (02) 9334 7980, 0434 652 063 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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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