The Australian Communications and Media Authority has begun a formal investigation into whether Australian television broadcasters breached content rules in their coverage of the Christchurch terrorist attacks last Friday.
“The ACMA’s investigation will focus on any content of the perpetrator-filmed, live-streamed footage of the shootings that was broadcast on Australian television,” ACMA said in a statement.
“ACMA is also concerned about content made available or linked to on broadcasters’ websites. While this is currently beyond its regulatory remit, the ACMA is in close contact with the Australian Press Council as it reviews its members’ coverage of the attack.”
ACMA chairman Nerida O’Loughlin is writing to the chief executives of commercial, national and subscription broadcasters “requesting urgent information on the nature, extent and timing of the broadcast of content relating to the shootings, in particular from the day of the attack”.
“The ACMA will also request urgent meetings with the peak industry organisations – Free TV Australia and the Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association – to discuss whether current rules are providing adequate protections for Australian audiences.”