Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
Censorship Your Rights Online

AU Classification Board To Censor Mobile Apps 129

bennyboy64 writes "The Australian Classification Board is seeking to censor mobile phone applications under its National Classification Scheme. 'I recently wrote to the minister [Minister McDonald] regarding my concern that some so-called mobile phone applications, which can be purchased online or either downloaded to mobile phones or played online via mobile phone access, are not being submitted to the board for classification,' Australia's Classification Board director Donald McDonald told a Senate Estimates committee. I wonder if they know that there are over 80,000 applications on the iPhone platform alone?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

AU Classification Board To Censor Mobile Apps

Comments Filter:
  • Re:Go censorship! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by LordAndrewSama ( 1216602 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @05:36AM (#29833081)
    My thoughts exactly. I wonder if they will just trust Apples review process? probably not... they don't trust ESRB ratings do they?
  • This is bad, how? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by wvmarle ( 1070040 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @05:36AM (#29833087)

    This is not censorship: this is rating, like done with movies and so already. And this kind of rating can be a great help for parents to rate suitability of some game/movie for their kids. So I don't see this as a bad thing, and it is definitely not censorship as the content in question remains available.

    Now how they are going to process and rate the tens of thousands of games available (tfa talks about games, not all applications) that is another matter. They may need to hire some extra staff.

    Still I think it is basically a good thing, as long as it is just rating, allowing the buyer to get a better idea what they want to buy. Just like going to the movies, the rating gives you an extra clue on the kind of movie you are going to watch, or in this case what application you are going to buy. Or which you may want to pass on.

  • by atomicstrawberry ( 955148 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @05:42AM (#29833121)

    As far as I know, to release a game on a medium regulated by the Australian classification board, you have to have the game in question classified. This costs a minimum of $1000 AUD.

    This will spell the end of any small-scale iPhone game development by individuals or indie developers in Australia. The only games we'll see will be from big publishers, if we see them at all - even a big-name game is going to struggle to recoup $1000+ from Australian sales alone.

  • Politicians (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Dorsai65 ( 804760 ) <dkmerriman@g m a i l . c om> on Thursday October 22, 2009 @05:47AM (#29833155) Homepage Journal

    I wonder if they know that there are over 80,000 applications on the iPhone platform alone?

    Feh. Politicians typically lose track of numbers once they get past however many fingers and/or toes they happen to have. I pity the poor staffers that are going to have to do the actual work...

    When I visited Oz (ca. 1976), it seemed like a pretty decent country. Too bad the government there has opted to go the way of England.

  • Re:Go censorship! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @07:27AM (#29833565) Journal
    The current trend in digital distribution options might actually make things harder to circumvent, not easier.

    With brick and mortar boxed software sales, stopping commercial-scale imports at the border is pretty easy; but there is pretty much nothing stopping you from having friends/family overseas mail you a disk in generic wrapping. The wide availability of warez makes importation even easier. Once you have a copy, it'll run on your computer as well as anywhere else.

    By contrast, with an iPhone, the app store is your only option(short of cracking the device, and that isn't getting any easier). It would be pretty trivial for Apple, if put under legal pressure, to implement geographic restrictions there. Other smartphones aren't quite as dire, since they have other ways of loading applications; but the level of carrier control is still far higher than equivalent vendor control on the PC side.
  • Re:This is bad, how? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by copiedright ( 1357445 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @07:44AM (#29833619) Homepage
    No its not banned, it just cannot be sold in any state. However the territories do sell unclassified materials. Thats why everyone goes to Canberra for porn. Also with section 92 of the constitution regarding internal free trade. Nothing stops you buying this electronic material from a server in the territories. Except for the cost of classification,
  • Re:This is bad, how? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Siridar ( 85255 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @07:45AM (#29833627)

    You fail to understand how the ratings board works in Australia - certainly, the ratings board says they're not "censors" but anything that is "RC" - refused classification - cannot be legally distributed. In that context, it cannot be called anything else *but* censorship.

  • by sukotto ( 122876 ) on Thursday October 22, 2009 @09:13AM (#29834293)

    Why don't we ever hear any GOOD news out of Australia? Is it just the media companies (and here I include /. ) only talking about the shitty stuff they're doing ... or is it really that shitty there now?

    Australia used to be cool.

"I shall expect a chemical cure for psychopathic behavior by 10 A.M. tomorrow, or I'll have your guts for spaghetti." -- a comic panel by Cotham