Screen Producers Australia and APRA AMCOS have united to push for a change in Australian content rules. They are asking for the rules to be adapted to fit the digital environment.

The push is hoping to see more support for Australian work on streaming services such as Netflix. SPA and APRA AMCOS have given a joint submission to the senate inquiry into Australian content on broadcast, radio and streaming services.

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They showed their united support for maintaining the Australian content broadcast on television and radio, as well as new changes to promote Australian work on streaming services. “Regardless of the technology or the platform, continually exposing Australian audiences to the wealth and quality of Australian music and screen content fosters a sustainable Australian industry” said Dean Ormston, CEO of APRA AMCOS.

The joint submission to the senate outlines that there are many opportunities to promote Australian content through streaming services. the submission also showcases several ways in which this can be achieved.

What needs to change?

There are currently no obligations surrounding Australian content on streaming services in Australia. The submission to the senate enquiry shows that there is more Australian content on US Netflix than Australian Netflix.

Currently only 2-2.5%  of the content on Netflix Australia is made here according to the statement. There is also a loophole in the rules that means New Zealand content broadcast on television for it’s first time here counts as Australian.

“In 2017, New Zealand content accounted for 25 per cent of Nine Network’s drama, 25 per cent of the Ten Network’s documentaries and the Seven Network broadcast 290 hours of New Zealand content.” reads the submission. A previous committee inquiry into the growth of the Australian film and television industry recommended that the rules be adjusted to stop the loophole “The committee recommends that first-release be redefined to mean first broadcast anywhere in the world.”

To adapt to the new markets in streaming, SPA and APRA gave two recommendations to the senate inquiry. Surrounding promotion and Australian content quotas, the ideas promise to offer more opportunities and exposure for Australians in the respective industries.

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