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General.
General
Suitable for everyone.
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Parental Guidance.
Parental Guidance
Not recommended for children under 15; may contain material which some children find confusing or upsetting.
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Mature.
Mature
Not recommended for children under 15; may include moderate levels of violence, language or themes.
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Mature Audiences.
Mature Audiences
Restricted - unsuitable for persons under 15; may contain strong content.
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Restricted (R).
Restricted (R)
Restricted to adults.
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Restricted (X).
Restricted (X)
Restricted to adults – contains sexually explicit content.
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Public
Public
Information for the general public.
Industry
Industry
Information for the media industry.
Compliance
Compliance
Classification compliance information.
How it all works
How it all works
How it all works.

Appendices

APPENDICES

APPENDIX NATIONAL CLASSIFICATION CODE

NATIONAL CLASSIFICATION CODE

  1. Classification decisions are to give effect, as far as possible, to the following principles:
    1. adults should be able to read, hear and see what they want;
    2. minors should be protected from material likely to harm or disturb them;
    3. everyone should be protected from exposure to unsolicited material that they find offensive;
    4. the need to take account of community concerns about:
      1. depictions that condone or incite violence, particularly sexual violence; and
      2. the portrayal of persons in a demeaning manner.

Publications

2. Publications are to be classified in accordance with the following table:

Item
Description of publication
Classification
1 Publications that:
  1. describe, depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified; or
  2. describe or depict in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult, a person who is, or appears to be, a child under 18 (whether the person is engaged in sexual activity or not); or
  3. promote, incite or instruct in matters of crime or violence
RC
2 Publications (except RC publications) that:
  1. explicitly depict sexual or sexually related activity between consenting adults in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult; or
  2. depict, describe or express revolting or abhorrent phenomena in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult and are unsuitable for a minor to see or read
Category 2 restricted
3 Publications (except RC publications and Category 2 restricted publications) that:
  1. explicitly depict nudity, or describe or impliedly depict sexual or sexually related activity between consenting adults, in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult; or
  2. describe or express in detail violence or sexual activity between consenting adults in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult; or
  3. are unsuitable for a minor to see or read
Category 1 restricted
4 All other publications
Unrestricted

Films

3. Films are to be classified in accordance with the following table:

Item
Description of film
Classification
1 Films that:
  1. depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified; or
  2. describe or depict in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult, a person who is, or appears to be, a child under 18 (whether the person is engaged in sexual activity or not); or
  3. promote, incite or instruct in matters of crime or violence
RC
2 Films (except RC films) that:
  1. contain real depictions of actual sexual activity between consenting adults in which there is no violence, sexual violence, sexualised violence, coercion, sexually assaultive language, or fetishes or depictions which purposefully demean anyone involved in that activity for the enjoyment of viewers, in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult; and
  2. are unsuitable for a minor to see
X 18+
3 Films (except RC films and X 18+ films) that are unsuitable for a minor to see
R 18+
4 Films (except RC films, X 18+ films and R 18+ films) that depict, express or otherwise deal with sex, violence or coarse language in such a manner as to be unsuitable for viewing by persons under 15
MA 15+
5 Films (except RC films, X 18+ films, R 18+ films and MA 15+ films) that cannot be recommended for viewing by persons who are under 15
M
6 Films (except RC films, X 18+ films, R 18+ films, MA 15+ films and M films) that cannot be recommended for viewing by persons who are under 15 without the guidance of their parents or guardians
PG
7 All other films
G

Computer Games

4. Computer games are to be classified in accordance with the following table:

Item
Description of computer game
Classification
1 Computer games that:
  1. depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified; or
  2. describe or depict in a way that is likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult, a person who is, or appears to be, a child under 18 (whether the person is engaged in sexual activity or not); or
  3. promote, incite or instruct in matters of crime or violence
RC
2 Computer games (except RC computer games) that are unsuitable for viewing or playing by a minor
R 18+
3 Computer games (except RC and R 18+ computer games) that depict, express or otherwise deal with sex, violence or coarse language in such a manner as to be unsuitable for viewing or playing by persons under 15
MA 15+
4 Computer games (except RC, R 18+ and MA 15+ computer games) that cannot be recommended for viewing or playing by persons who are under 15
M
5 Computer games (except RC, R 18+, MA 15+ and M computer games) that cannot be recommended for viewing or playing by persons who are under 15 without the guidance of their parents or guardians
PG
6 All other computer games
G

GLOSSARY

Term/ abbreviation
Explanation
2D Two dimensional
3D Three dimensional
ACMA Australian Communications and Media Authority
ACA Scheme Additional Content Assessor Scheme
Advertising Scheme The Advertising of Unclassified Films and Computer Games Scheme
APS Australian Public Service
ATSA Scheme Authorised Television Series Assessor Scheme
BSA Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (Cth)
Call in The Director of the Classification Board may call in publications if he/she has reasonable grounds to believe they are submittable publications and that they are being published in an Australian state or territory

 

The Director of the Classification Board may also call in films and computer games if he/she has reasonable grounds to believe they are not exempt and that they are being published in an Australian state or territory

Censorship ministers Commonwealth, state and territory ministers with responsibility for classification
Classification Act Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 (Cth)
Classification Board Statutory body established under the Classification Act. The Classification Board classifies computer games, films and certain publications
Classification Board member A statutory appointee to the Classification Board established under the Classification Act
Classification Branch The Classification Branch of the Attorney-General's Department. Classification Branch officers provide administrative support to the Classification Board and Classification Review Board
Classification guidelines Guidelines on the application of the National Classification Code, approved by ministers with responsibility for classification. There are the Guidelines for the Classification of Films, the Guidelines for the Classification of Computer Games and the Guidelines for the Classification of Publications
Classification Review Board Statutory body established under the Classification Act. The Classification Review Board is a part-time statutory body convened, as required, to review decisions made by the Classification Board
Classification Review Board member Statutory appointee to the Classification Review Board under the Classification Act
Classification Liaison Scheme (CLS) A scheme that assists retailers and distributors of publications, films and computer games to comply with their legal obligations under the National Classification Scheme
Code, the The National Classification Code
Computer games classifications
G General

 

PG Parental guidance recommended
M Recommended for mature audiences
MA 15+ Not suitable for people under 15. Under 15s must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian
R 18+ Restricted to 18 years and over
RC  
Consumer advice The Classification Board and Classification Review Board determine consumer advice for films, computer games and certain publications. Films classified PG, M, MA 15+, R 18+ and X 18+, and computer games classified PG, M, MA 15+ and R 18+, must be assigned consumer advice. Consumer advice gives the principal elements that contributed to the classification of the product and indicates the intensity and/or frequency of those elements. The Classification Board and the Classification Review Board may also provide consumer advice to films and computer games classified G, and publications classified Unrestricted
Convenor Member of the Classification Review Board who is responsible for the management of the Classification Review Board's business
Customs Australian Customs and Border Protection Service
Deputy Convenor Member of the Classification Review Board who may exercise some of the Convenor's powers in the Convenor's absence
Deputy Director Full-time member of the Classification Board who may exercise some of the Director's powers in the Director's absence
Determined markings Classification symbols, descriptions and consumer advice lines, as determined by the Director as set out in the Classifications (Markings for Publications) Determination 2007, the Classification (Markings for Films and Computer Games) Determination 2007, and the Classification (Markings for Certified Exempt Films and Computer Games) Determination 2007
Director Full-time member of the Classification Board responsible for the management of the Classification Board
Exemptions to show an unclassified film at an event An organisation may apply to the Director of the Classification Board for exemption from state and territory classification enforcement legislation to screen an unclassified film at an event. A person may also apply for an exemption
Exempt computer game A computer game exempt from classification requirements as defined by section 5B of the Classification Act
Exempt film A film exempt from classification requirements as defined by section 5B of the Classification Act
Fee waiver The waiving of classification application fees by the Director in specific circumstances, as provided by the Classification Act
Film (including video, DVD and other media storage devices) classifications
G General
PG Parental guidance recommended
M Recommended for mature audiences
MA 15+ Not suitable for people under 15. Under 15s must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian
R 18+ Restricted to 18 years and over
X 18+ Restricted to 18 years and over
RC Refused Classification
FOI Act Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth)
FOI Freedom of information
Guidelines Legislative instruments which provide direction on the application of the National Classification Code, approved by ministers with responsibility for classification. Separate guidelines exist for the classification of films, computer games and publications
Industry assessors Persons authorised by the Director to make recommendations to the Classification Board on the classification and consumer advice for:
  • computer games that are likely to be classified G, PG or M; or
  • additional content accompanying previously classified or exempt film/s on DVD or other media storage devices; or
  • certain television series released on DVD or other media storage devices.
There are also industry assessors who are authorised to assess the likely classification of unclassified films and/or computer games for advertising purposes
National Classification Scheme A cooperative Commonwealth, state and territory regulatory Scheme for classification of films, computer games and certain publications
National Classification Code (the Code) A code that sets out how films, computer games and certain publications are to be classified
Prohibited Exports Regulations Customs (Prohibited Exports) Regulations 1958 (Cth)
Prohibited Imports Regulations Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 made under section 50 of the Customs Act 1901 (Cth); Regulation 4A relates to the importation of publications (including films and computer games and other goods)
Publications classifications
Unrestricted Unrestricted
Category 1 restricted Not available to persons under 18 years
Category 2 restricted Not available to persons under 18 years
RC Refused Classification
Senior Classifier Full-time senior member of the Classification Board
Serial classification declaration A declaration issued by the Classification Board on the classification and any conditions that apply to issues of a periodical for a specified period
Law, Crime and Community Safety Council (LCCSC) Committee comprising Commonwealth, state and territory Ministers with responsibility for classification. In most jurisdictions this is the Attorney-General, except in the Commonwealth where the Minister is the Minister for Justice.
Submittable publication An unclassified publication that is unsuitable for a minor to see or read, and likely to cause offence to a reasonable adult to the extent that the publication should not be sold or displayed as an unrestricted publication