Classification of Films, Videos, Publications and Computer Games - Australian Government

Service summary

You will be required to apply for a classification if you intend to produce a film, publication or computer game for release or sale to the general public.All films, videos, computer games and bluray or Digital Versatile Discs (DVDs)  for public exhibition offered for sale or hire or made available in amusement arcades are required to be classified for their primary content and any additional advertising material.

Any publication that is likely to exceed the guidelines for unrestricted publications or is considered to lie on the unrestricted / restricted border is required to be submitted for classification. This classification remains with the item regardless of ownership.

The following are taken into consideration when making a decision on a classification of a publication, film or computer game

  • Standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults
  • The literary, artistic or educational merit (if any)
  • The general character of the publication, film or computer game

        and

  • The target audience.

These requirements apply to all material intended for distribution in Australia.

Please be aware that certain exemptions are available from the Agency, please consult the Contact Officer for more information.

Service type

Licence

A licence defines the need to obtain recognition / certification and registration to undertake a certain business activity.

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible to receive a classification you must:

  • Apply in writing, including a signature by or on behalf of the applicant;
  • If applying for classification of a film, provide a written synopsis of the film in English including a summary of the plot and any incidents depicted by the film;
  • If applying for classification of a television series, provide an assessment of the television series prepared by an authorised television series assessor;
  • If applying for classification of a computer game, provide a copy of the game if it is practical to do so;
  • If applying for classification of a computer game, provide the title of the game, the year of production, the name of the publisher, a description of game play and the country of origin; and
  • Provide with your application a copy of the publication, computer game, film or video.

Please consult the Contact Officer for more information regarding eligibility requirements.

Duration

Variable depending on the item to be classified.

Fees

 TypeDescription
ApplyApplication

Please consult the Contact Officer for information on fees to be submitted.

Administering agency

Department of Communications and the Arts

Act(s) name

Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 (Australian Government)

Regulation(s) name

Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Regulations 2005 (Australian Government)

Contact details

General Enquiries
Department of Communications and the Arts

Operating address:
38 Sydney Avenue
Forrest
Australian Capital Territory 2603
Mailing address:
General Post Office Box 2154
Canberra,Australian Capital Territory,2601
Australia

Phone:

1800254649

Phone:

02 62711000

Supporting information

Disclaimer

The information contained on the Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) web site, or via packages or other sources is intended for general guidance only.

To the full extent permitted by law, the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments make no representations or warranties (expressed or implied) in relation to the information, including its accuracy, currency or completeness.

The business information provided does not constitute professional or legal advice, nor is the use of any third party resource an endorsement of the information contained, the associated organisation, product or service. It is recommended that you obtain appropriate professional and /or independent legal advice to ensure that the material provided here is relevant to your particular circumstances.

To the full extent permitted by law the Federal, State, Territory and Local Governments, their employees and agents do not accept any liability for any reason, including without limitation, liability in negligence, to any person for the general information which is provided herein, or in respect of anything, including the consequences of anything done, or not done, by any such person in whole or partial reliance upon the information.