Members of the Australian Screen Industry Group Submission to the Streaming Services Reporting and Investment Scheme Discussion Paper

6 May, 2022

The Australian Writers' Guild, along with 13 other preeminent screen industry guilds and associations representing the interests of thousands of Australian screen industry practitioners in front of and behind the camera, has responded to the Government's Streaming Services Reporting and Investment Scheme in a joint submission to the discussion paper. 

The Australian Screen Industry Guild's (ASIG) hold significant concerns with the Scheme’s design:

  • We are concerned that the Governments proposal includes an alarming degree of Ministerial discretion which brings with it untenable risk of inadequate and inconsistent regulatory action.
  • We oppose the Scheme’s proposed 5% threshold which will not deliver on well-established cultural public policy objectives. ASIG members remain united in their call for a swift introduction of a 20% Australian commissioned content expenditure requirement on global technology streaming businesses in line with other forward- thinking international jurisdictions.
  • The scheme does not include specific protections for critical genres of drama, documentary, First Nations, and children’s content. We believe this to be a substantial oversight which, in consideration of the Government’s deregulation of Australia’s Commercial Free-To-Air Networks last year, now urgently needs to be addressed
  • We oppose the proposed halving of the subscription television Australian drama obligation. The proposed cut will substantially harm subscription television audiences, who will lose access to high quality Australian narrative content. The proposal is without reasonable policy justification. 
  • We believe that the scheme proposed in this Discussion Paper is weak, lengthy and one that creates an uncertain pathway to regulation. The policy conversation regarding these issues has been in train for a decade, the need for meaningful regulatory action has been clear for many years. We are concerned that further delay in regulation at this late stage is damaging to the industry, exacerbated by the weakness of the scheme proposed.

ASIG Members joined forces in a government submission filed today which addresses these commonly-held concerns. Find the ASIG submission here.

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