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Wednesday, 25 June 2003
Page: 12472


Senator MURPHY (12:41 PM) —Under part 11 of the Broadcasting Services Act, `Complaints to the ABA', section 147 deals with the grounds for a person to lodge a complaint against a commercial broadcast licence holder, but you then have to refer to section 150 for complaints relating to national broadcasting services or datacasting services provided by the ABC and SBS. I also draw the minister's attention to sections 151, 152 and even 153, but most importantly section 152, which says:

(1) If, having investigated a complaint, the ABA is satisfied that:

(a) the complaint was justified; and

(b) the ABA should take action under this section to encourage the Australian Broadcasting Corporation or the Special Broadcasting Service Corporation to comply with the relevant code of practice;

the ABA may, by notice in writing given to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation or the Special Broadcasting Service Corporation, recommend that it take action to comply with the relevant code of practice and take such other action in relation to the complaint as is specified in the notice.

(2) That other action may include broadcasting or otherwise publishing an apology or retraction.

(3) The ABA must notify the complainant of the results of such an investigation.

I go back to Senator Lees's question: shouldn't the rules that apply to the public broadcasters in this respect also apply to the commercial broadcasters?