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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Sir FREDERICK STEWART (Parramatta) (3:33 AM) . - The circumstances were not exactly as they were stated by the Minister in charge of the bill (Mr. Beasley). I direct his attention to the text of the clause which says: -

The licensee of a commercial broadcasting station shall not relay or broadcast any part of the programme of another broadcasting station. . . . without the consent of the owner or licensee of the originating station.

To that the Minister would add the words " and the approval of the Minister ". The clause is not limited in its application to the relaying of news picked up from another station, which, admittedly, it should secure through the instrumentality of the Postmaster-General's Department. This will prevent two stations, without the prior consent of the Minister, from co-operating, as is done every hour of the day and every day of the week, in an advertisement which has nothing whatever to do with the transmission of news. I should have no objection to a clause which precluded a station from picking up news items from some other station, because that would be in consonance with another clause to which I took exception, but of which the committee approved. I ask the Minister to realize that, if the verbiage of the original clause be restored, the Macquarie network, for instance, would not be able to arrange a combined relay of an advertisement of Colgate's soap without first submitting it to the Minister for approval. I am sure that the Minister does not want to be bothered with that sort of thing.

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