The ACMA has imposed new standards for subscription and narrowcast television services with the aim of preventing terrorist activity.
The standards prohibit programs that directly recruit participants or solicit donations for terrorist organisations, regardless of a narrowcaster’s intention or knowledge about the program content.
Previously a narrowcaster only committed an offence and breach of relevant class licence conditions if it intend to use a broadcasting service to commit the offence or are reckless in their knowledge of whether the service is being used to commit the offence.
Program content that is part of a bona fide report, comment on a matter of public interest or political opinion is not prohibited in order to ensure that freedom of expression was not unduly restricted, the ACMA claimed.
ACMA Chairman, Chris Chapman, said in a statement that the new standards reflected existing Commonwealth anti-terrorism laws and would ensure that the ACMA could act more effectively if inappropriate material was broadcast.
The ACMA said it had opted for standards instead of seeking an amendment to the existing codes as it believed a standard enabled a stronger, more expeditious enforcement mechanism to be used in the event of a breach and did not require the complainant to complain to the broadcaster first.
NSW Council for Civil Liberties president Cameron Murphy could not be reached.
ACMA to combat TV terrorism
By Staff Writers on Mar 27, 2006 2:39PM