Peak industry body Commercial Radio Australia has recommended that disclosure requirements should be reviewed and modernised in line with the Government’s aim to move to a more platform-neutral regulatory framework across media.
In its submission to the Australian Communication and Media Authority’s discussion paper on “Impartiality and Commercial Influence in Broadcast News”, CRA says a review of the disclosure obligations that apply to radio was warranted given changes in the media landscape.
CRA chief executive officer Joan Warner said radio had onerous obligations under the Disclosure Standard and the Commercial Radio Code of Practice, which do not apply to other platforms.
“We support the disclosure of commercial interests which affect current affairs programs, but commercial radio is the only medium with such prescriptive and disproportionate disclosure obligations,” she said.
“CRA does not support the extension of such onerous obligations to other platforms, but believes the gap between commercial radio and other media should be narrowed.
“In the interests of moving towards a more harmonised, platform-neutral regulatory framework, it’s time for the Disclosure Standard to be reviewed.
“The principles enshrined in the Standard are now commonly accepted and applied, and the industry has an exceptionally good compliance record.”
CRA’s submission says no further regulation is needed and recommends the Disclosure Standard should be simplified and modernised to enable the disclosure of relevant commercial arrangements in a more straight-forward way.