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Action on broadcasting matters: April to June 2019

Valid-complaints png 56 valid complaints assessed

commenced-investigations png 18 investigations commenced

finalised-investigations png 26 investigations finalised

Breach png 6 investigations with breach findings

 

Breach pngSix investigations with breach findings

Quarterly highlights

The ACMA commenced 10 investigations into coverage of the March 2019 terrorist attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, by Australian television broadcasters. The investigations considered news and current affairs programs broadcast over the weekend of 15–17 March 2019 against relevant provisions of the various codes of practice. The investigations included the review of more than 200 hours of broadcast footage as well as analysis of the detailed information provided by broadcasters about the editorial decisions they made in relation to that footage.

The ACMA considered that there was some material and treatment of that material that raised questions about whether there was compliance with the broadcasting codes of practice. However, given the level of responsibility shown by the broadcasters and the unique circumstances of this incident, the ACMA did not make compliance findings about individual broadcasts.

A report consolidating our investigation findings was published in July 2019.

Broadcasting matters and investigations

The ACMA considers every complaint it receives and assesses whether to investigate the complaint.

Number of broadcasting matters/investigations

Number of broadcasting matters-investigations 

Investigations commenced or declined by broadcast sector

Investigations commenced or declined by broadcast sector

Investigations finalised

Investigations finalised

* Note: These ten investigations related to broadcasts about the Christchurch terrorist attack that occurred on Friday 15 March 2019.

Investigations finalised by broadcast sector 

Investigations finalised by broadcast sector

Broadcasting: Average time taken to finalise closed investigations as at 30 March 2019

Broadcasting Average time taken to finalise closed investigations as at 30 March 2019

Provisions investigated

The ACMA receives and investigates complaints about a variety of licence conditions, program standards and codes of practice. Broadcasting codes of practice investigations usually assess a broadcast against more than one provision of the relevant code.

The following table shows finalised investigations and the relevant provisions. Breaches found during this period are shown in bold.

Investigation number Broadcaster Program / issue  Provisions investigated

Provisions of the Commercial Television Industry Code of Practice 2015 (revised 2018)

BI-462 Ten/Network Ten (Sydney) Pty Limited Territory Cops
  • 2.1.1: classification
  • 2.6.2: material not suitable for broadcast   
BI-456

Seven/Channel Seven Melbourne Pty Ltd 

Seven News
  • 3.3.1: present material facts accurately
  • 3.4.1: present news fairly and impartially
BI-444 Prime 7/Prime Television (Southern) Pty Limited

Allegations that the commercials for cinema films Halloween and Hunter Killer did not meet PG classification criteria

  • Halloween 
  • 2.1.1: classification
  • 2.4.1: special care requirements for non-program material
  • 1.1.4(b): exception—reasonable reliance on another person
  • Hunter Killer
  • 2.1.1: classification
  • 2.4.1: special care requirements for non-program material
BI-443  Seven/Channel Seven Adelaide Pty Limited

Allegation that a commercial for Venom, a cinema film, did not meet PG classification criteria

  • 2.1.1: classification
  • 1.1.4(b): exception—reasonable reliance on another person
Provisions of the national broadcaster (ABC and SBS) codes 
BI-442 Australian Broadcasting Corporation Catalyst
  • 2.1: Accuracy
  • 2.2: Materially mislead audiences
  • 4.1: Impartiality

Provisions of Part 9D of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992

BI-482 Channel Seven Sydney Pty Ltd Captioning in My Kitchen Rules and Instant Hotel
  • ss130ZR(1)—provide captioning service
  • paragraph 7(1)(o) of Schedule 2
BI-493  Channel Seven Adelaide Pty Ltd  Captioning in AFL Collingwood vs Geelong game
  • ss130ZR(1) – provide captioning service
  • Paragraph 7(1)(o) of Schedule 2
Provisions of Schedule 2 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992
BI-472 NBN/NBN Pty Ltd Political advertisement—broadcast of required particulars
  • Subclause 4(2) [identification of certain political matter]
  • Paragraph 7(1)(j) [comply with subclause 4(2)] of Schedule 2 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992
BI-447 Yarra Valley FM Inc Complaint about a community broadcaster providing political matter without required particulars and broadcast of election material during blackout period
  • Subclause 4(2): licensee must announce required particulars
  • Subclause 3A(2): licensee must not broadcast election advertisements during the blackout period
BI-449 Clarence Valley Christian Broadcasters Inc Complaint about a community broadcaster not representing the Christian community interest, not encouraging participation in the operations of the service and not providing the service for community purposes
  • Subclause 9(2)(b): representing community interest
  • Subclause 9(2)I(i): encouraging participation
  • Subclause 9(2)(d): providing the service for community purposes
BI-452 Tweed Coast Community Radio Inc Complaint about a community broadcaster not providing the service for community purposes
  • Subclause 9(2)(d): providing the service for community purposes
BI-455 Port Stephens FM Radio Inc Complaint about a community licensee broadcasting advertisements and exceeding the sponsorship limit
  • Subclause 9(1)(b): will not broadcast advertisement
  • Subclause 9(3)(b): will not exceed 5 minutes per hour of sponsorship announcements
BI-459 Tatiara Community FM Broadcasters Inc Complaint about a community licensee broadcasting advertisements
  • Subclause 9(1)(b): will not broadcast advertisements
BI-463 Yarra Valley FM Inc  Complaint about a community licensee exceeding the sponsorship limit
  • Subclause 9(3)(b): will not exceed 5 minutes per hour of sponsorship announcements
BI-470 Memphis Mayhem FM Radio Inc Complaint about a community broadcaster not providing the service for community purposes
  • Subclause 9(2)(d): providing the service for community purposes
BI-490 Fresh Broadcasters Inc Complaint about a community licensee broadcasting a tobacco advertisement
  • Subclause 9(1)(a): licensee will not broadcast a tobacco advertisement.

 

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