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24th July

 Updated: Government Pests...


Nice 'n' Naughty

Australian game censors ban The Bug Butcher video game
Link Here  full story: Banned Games in Australia...Adult games ban
bug butcher Bug Butcher is a fun shoot 'em up computer game from Awfully Nice Studios.

It has just been banned by the Australian Censor Board for reasons which are not yet apparent. The censors have provided just an uninformative stock statement on the website noting the game as 'Refused Classification'.

The description of the game does not really make the game sound very bannable:

You play Harry, an exterminator who gets tasked with slaughtering bugs in a futuristic research facility, in order to buy the surviving scientists time until the total decontamination process is complete. It's a simple game where you face wave after wave of enemies, picking up new weapons and power-ups in order to enhance your slaying skills.

Update: Censored whilst claiming to be uncensored

24th July 2016. See  article from refused-classification.com

Awfully Nice Studios explained a little more about the ban:

We have been in the age rating process for our upcoming console release in Australia. Seem like this triggered the ban from Steam as well. The reasoning behind is, is sad but at the same point also funny. We have a powerup called Speed powerup where Harry injects himself a syringe. Looks like the combination of the injection with the word Speed someone could assume that it's a drug. We are shocked but are trying to get in touch with Australia to see if we can fix this.

 

21st July

 Update: An expensive joke...


Nice 'n' Naughty

Queensland resorts to making up a new law just to deal with supposedly offensive slogans on Wicked Campervans
Link Here  full story: Wicked Campervans...Un polictically correct adverts wind up Australian and New Zealand authorities
queensland government logo The Palaszczuka? government has found an expensive way to get Wicked camper vans' offensive slogans off Queensland roads. Make up a new law.

Yvette D'Ath, Queensland's Attorney-General, will introduce legislation which will see commercial registration holders who fail to comply with determinations by the Advertising Standards Bureau face having the registration of those vehicles cancelled. D'Ath said:

I understand clearly the level of community concern about the vulgar, crass and offensive slogans that have been displayed on some commercial vehicles in Queensland and other parts of Australia.

They have been subject to frequent complaints to the Advertising Standards Board. When the ASB has deemed those slogans to be offensive, the typical response from the holders of those commercial vehicle registrations has been deafening silence.

Now if they refuse to remove the offensive slogans, their vehicles will be off the road.

Working in conjunction with the Department of Transport and the ASB, D'Ath said the solution allowed the advertising watchdog to maintain its power, but gave any adverse finding teeth.

The government hopes to have the legislation in front of the parliament by the end of the year.

 

20th July

 Updated: Protruding labias...


Nice 'n' Naughty

Body image campaigners call for a PG-15 rating for close up nudity
Link Here
embrace taryn brumfitt Embrace is a documentary that sets out to raise awareness of the female body. It has been given an MA 15+ rating by the Australian film censors with consumer advice of strong nudity. The censors noted that some of the genital detail included protruding labia in a sequence showing different women's vaginas in close up

However body image campaigner and the film's director, Taryn Brumfitt, is not impressed. She claims that the restricted age rating reinforces the message that women's bodies are shameful. She added:

It puts my film in the same category as Fifty Shades of Grey. t's wrong on so many levels. I am outraged.

The Board of Directors have got their heads in the sand if they think that's offensive. These images are not crude. We don't need to be ashamed of how our bodies look.

An M rating [PG-15] (stipulates) that nudity must be justified by context. The nudity in my film is completely in context. The only way these images can be harmful is if they continue to be censored.

Andrew Mackie added for the film's producers, Transmission Films:

This is a very disappointing decision. The whole point of this entertaining and educative film is the message that all bodies are different ... and that girls and women should be encouraged to love themselves exactly as they are.

This is a message that needs to be heard by girls under the age of 15.

[One can't help wondering if the filmmakers would be so keen on young boys oggling the 'message'].

Transmission Films also confirmed today that Facebook would not allow a post of the film's poster to be boosted to reach an additional audience because the image has excessive skin.

After screening at this year's Sydney Film Festival, Embrace is to be released in cinemas nationally on August 4.

Update: New Zealand ruled by Australian censorship

17th July 2016. See  article from stuff.co.nz

nziff logo The Australian film censor's decision to give Taryn Brumfitt's Embrace a 15 rating has had a knock on effect in New Zealand.

Before the Australian decision, Embrace was exempt from classification in New Zealand on the grounds it was an educational documentary. Now the 15 rating has caused major problems for the New Zealand International Film Festival (NZIFF), which plans to show the documentary later in July. E

New Zealand's censorship laws mean that if a film is restricted in Australia, it needs to be classified for New Zealand audiences by the Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC). While the film is being classified the festival is not allowed to sell tickets to anyone under the age of 18. A decision on its rating is expected by July 26, but that is just three days before the documentary is scheduled to screen in Auckland.

NZIFF communications manager Rebecca McMillan said the age restriction could prevent mothers taking their daughters to see the film, limiting potentially important conversations about body image. She hoped the New Zealand OFLC would give the film a more lenient rating than its Australian counterpart. McMillan said the NZIFF wanted girls as young as 12 to be able to see Embrace . That's the most vulnerable audience with body messaging, she said.

Update: M rated in New Zealand

20th July 2016. See  article from stuff.co.nz

new zealand m Before the Australian Classification Board's decision to award an MA 15+ rating, Embrace was exempt from classification in New Zealand on the grounds it was an educational documentary.

Nudity depicted in a documentary about positive body image was deemed too much for young Australians, but New Zealand censors have decided the film is for all Kiwis.

New Zealand film censors of the OFLC have decided  to award the film an M rating, with a descriptive note for offensive language and nudity .

The mature M rating is an advisory rating recommending that the film is suitable for over 16s. However there are no restrictions  but a person of any age may see the film.

The OFLC said in its official decision that Embrace was a well-made, thought-provoking and uplifting examination of body positivity, self-worth and diversity of representation. It also said it would likely be an educational resource for younger and older viewers alike, and facilitate discussion.

Embrace director Taryn Brumfitt says New Zealand's censors have made the right decision not to restrict her film. She said:

Embrace is an entertaining, life-affirming film that leaves audiences feeling inspired. The decision of the New Zealand Classification Office can give New Zealand audiences confidence that Embrace is a film for everyone.

Rebecca McMillan, the NZIFF's communications manager, said they were thrilled at the change: she said:

The NZ classification decision means that this educational documentary can reach the people who need to see and hear body positive messages the most. New Zealanders of all ages can decide for themselves whether they are mature enough to see the film and understand the themes that it raises: themes of body positivity and representation of women in the media.

We're encouraged that the Classification Office considers New Zealanders more culturally aware and willing to have these conversations with our children by allowing an unrestricted rating for the film.

Taryn Brumfitt will be in attendance at the Auckland and Wellington screenings of Embrace to participate in a Q&A session.

 

8th July

 Offsite Article: Top adverts in Australia...

Link Here
we love our lamb advert Australian advert censor reveals its most complained about ads

See article from smartcompany.com.au

 

4th July

 Update: Australian Censors Overreach...

When banning video games. By Matthew Sainsbury
Link Here  full story: Banned Games in Australia...Adult games ban
meiq labyrinth of death
Australian Film Classification Board

Australia

The Film Classification Board

The Australian state censor has responsibility for cinema, home video, video games, books and magazines.

Appeals about censorship decisions are heard by the Classification Review Board.

Film & Game Classifications

- G: (General Exhibition) These films and computer games are for general viewing.

- PG: (Parental Guidance) Contains material which some children find confusing or upsetting, and may require the guidance of parents or guardians. It is not recommended for viewing or playing by persons under 15 without guidance from parents or guardians.

- M:  (Recommended for mature audiences) Contains material that is not recommended for persons under 15 years of age.

- MA15+ (Mature Accompanied) The content is considered unsuitable for exhibition by persons under the age of 15. Persons under this age may only legally purchase or exhibit MA15+ rated content under the supervision of an adult guardian.

- R18+ (Restricted) People under 18 may not buy, rent or exhibit these films

- X18+ (Restricted) People under 18 may not buy, rent or exhibit these films. This rating applies to real sex content only

- RC (Refused Classification)Banned

Note that there is no R18+ X18+ available for games so adult games often end up getting banned much to the annoyance of gamers.

Note also that films classified as X18+ (Restricted) are banned from sale or rent in most of Australia. They can only be sold from Northern Territory and ACT (Canberra). Mail order and imports are allowed though and possession of X18+ material is legal

Publication Classifications

 - Unrestricted

- Unrestricted Mature: Not recommended for readers under 15.

- Restricted Category 1: Not available to persons under 18 years. Softcore

- Restricted Category 2 : Not available to persons under 18 years. Only to be sold in adults only shops: Hardcore

- RC: Refused Classification. Banned

Only publications that would be restricted 1 & 2 need to be submitted for censorship. There is also a scheme that magazines only need to be submitted once. Subsequent issues inherit the same rating. However later issues can be 'called in' for reassessment if anything crops up to alert the censors of changes.

Websites:
Classification Board

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