AdultShop.com to appeal X18+ ruling

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AdultShop.com to appeal X18+ ruling

Online retailer AdultShop.com is to continue its fight for the legal sale of X18+ films outside the territories with the lodging of an appeal in the Federal Court of Australia.

Online retailer AdultShop.com is to continue its fight for the legal sale of X18+ films outside the territories with the lodging of an appeal in the Federal Court of Australia.

The appeal, lodged on Friday, seeks judicial review of the decision by the Classification Review Board to give an X18+ classification to the explicit erotic film, Viva Erotica.

Currently X18+ films can only be sold from the Northern Territory and the ACT.

The application follows the upholding of the classification by the Review Board on 4 January. The board first made the classification decision on 7 December.

In its ruling on the film, the Review Board argued that "actual sex" in films offends the reasonable adult and therefore should be classified X18+ and illegal for purchase in the States of Australia.

According to AdultShop, the X18+ classification does not reflect current community standards, and the Review Board in its decision has wrongfully assumed the Classification Guidelines are an accurate reflection of current community standards.

The retailer also claims that the Office of Film and Literature Classification, which supports the Review Board, has not properly consulted the Australian community to determine whether explicit erotic films are likely to offend the average Australian adult.

In defence of the company’s court action, AdultShop managing director, Malcolm Day, said in a statement that the decision by the Review Board was made “despite overwhelming evidence put before it that demonstrated the majority of Australian adults are not offended by films involving actual sex”.

AdultShop has previously cited reports from three independent experts, including feminist academic and Sydney University Associate Professor, Catharine Lumby.

The company also commissioned a national survey that found that 30 percent of Australian adults considered films involving actual sex to be offensive.

The survey also found that 76 percent of Australian adults believe explicit erotic films should be made available on a restricted basis to people over the age of 18 years, who wish to view or purchase them.

“If successful, this appeal should have the effect of bringing classification decisions in Australia in line with Europe, the United States and New Zealand,” Day said.

The appeal will be heard on 1 March at the Federal Court of Australia (NSW).

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