Under the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (Cth), the primary responsibility for ensuring that programs broadcast on subscription television (STV) reflect community standards rests with STV licensees and their channel provider partners under codes of practice developed by ASTRA in consultation with the federal government regulator, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).
Under the Subscription Broadcast Television and Subscription Narrowcast Television Codes of Practice, STV licensees are required to classify films, drama programs, documentaries and reality television programs applying the program classification system contained in the Guidelines for the Classification of Films 2012. Classifications, together with appropriate consumer advice, must be provided to ensure adequate warning regarding program content.
STV licensees must use their best endeavours to ensure that, where other programs are classified, this classification will have particular regard to the protection of children and will take into account relevant aspects of the Guidelines.
Classification markings are the coloured classification symbols and words that represent each of the classifications: G, PG, M, MA 15+ and R 18+.