The Australian Law Reform Commission have just announced
that they have released a discussion paper
outlining 43 proposals for reforms in the classification system. The summary is extremely encouraging:
The proposed new framework envisages:
- a greater role for industry in classifying content—allowing government regulators to focus on the content that generates the most community concern, and ensure access to adult content is properly restricted;
- content will be classified using the same categories, guidelines and markings whether viewed on television, at the cinema, on DVD or online;
- changes to classification categories, with age references—PG 8+ and T 13+ (Teen)—to help parents choose content for their children; and
- the Commonwealth taking on full responsibility for administering and enforcing the new scheme.
The paper weighs in at a hefty 247 pages and we're still digesting, but there is also this great quote from ALRC President Professor Rosalind Croucher:
ALRC President Professor Rosalind Croucher said, “The ALRC has heard loud and clear that the current system is broken and no longer fits with how people are consuming media content. It is poorly equipped to deal with the challenges of media convergence, and the case for reform is strong. The ALRC is proposing reform that can be phased in to allow time for industry and the community to adapt to the new scheme.
(Emphasis mine.) There's nothing specifically mentioned about video games that we can see at first glance, other than to state pretty clearly that the jury is still out when it comes to violent video games being bad for people.