Western Australia Proceeds With R18+ Legislation, Makes Minimal Changes

Western Australia Proceeds With R18+ Legislation, Makes Minimal Changes

With the R18+ rating poised to come into being in January 2013, it has been up to each state and territory to pass its own seperate legislation. Western Australia was one of the first to present its legislation, but worries from Liberal MP Nick Goiran that an R18+ rating would “introduce a level of violence that children and young people weren’t exposed to before” pushed the issue to a committee. We’ve now been informed that the committee has come back, making minimal changes to the legislation, meaning Western Australia’s R18+ legislation will most likely pass without any issues.

The committee’s changes have absolutely no impact on the rating itself, and mainly deal with the timing of the legislation and when it comes into being. The changes can be read here.

Once legislation has gone through a committee it generally manages to make it through unscathed from that point. Looks as though WA will get the legislation through in time, despite the early hitch.

Thanks again Choc


  • As someone who works for one of the major parties (the good one 😉 ) in WA and with a lot of MPs, I am glad I don’t need to go and get angry at any of them.

  • Anthony “the man / choc” Mundine ? Would love to hear the logic behind how an R18+ rating exposes children to more violent content, does he also know about the messed up shit on the net? Seen a few irl beheadings, don’t remember having to provide id before I viewed it..

  • Can someone please explain to me why individual states and territories need to pass their own versions of the legislation? will that not make things a little difficult for digital distribution channels like steam and green man gaming or even XBLA?

    • Nothing has changed in that way with XBLA etc aside from the fact it may be hard to get R18 games onto those services, time will tell as there is no restrictions on the service. Perhaps they may need to put parental controls on the store etc to get R18 in.

      The states control classification under the constitution but the Government controls the borders. Controlling the borders allows the Government to restrict what enters the nation whilst the states have to have their own individual regimes for classification due to the constitution. The Federal Government does not have the power and the only way to get it would be a referendum which would fail as all the states would rail against it.

      Basically the states should hand over classification to the feds because its just stupid that we have this system but when the constitution was drafted, this wasn’t an issue obviously….

      I imagine had we not gone to R18 earlier this year, the Federal Government would have begun steps to remove classification power from the states but it would have been a hard slog. Once the Federal Government passed, the states had to fall into line because we don’t have customs between states

      So if the states don’t pass by January 1 and an R18 game comes out, those states which do not have the law will have the game on shelves and able to be sold to minors. Reason? The current classification legislations have zero mention of R18 games and because they were not RC’d, they are still legal. State legislation only deals with RC games and bans….

      They have a big problem the states if they do not pass by January 1. A very big problem

    • Federal law delegates this stuff to the states. Remember how all of the R18+ thing was dependent on the state Attorney Generals agreeing to it unanimously?

    • The states have their own censorship legislation that has to be changed to bring it into line with the Feds (or so we hope). This two-tiered legislation is why we have a lot of small (and large) discrepancies in the application of media censorship in Australia – why some publications are banned in Queensland, why South Australia has strange limitations on the display (for sale) of R18+ material, why you can buy X18+ material in the territories and not the states, and why it’s illegal to own all RC material in WA, and not just the content contains illegal material.

      Why things are this was is a bit of a long and ugly story, but the Feds actually have limited power to change anything about our censorship/media classifications system because of the way the system is set up. We have a set of federal laws, but they can only really be changed with the unanimous approval of the states (with one controversial exception) , and then they can go ahead and do their own thing anyway.

  • “introduce a level of violence that children and young people weren’t exposed to before”

    I still don’t know what the hell kind of logic this is supposed to be.

    • I have the best possible solution, we should make R18+ for adults only and make it illegal for children to get their hands on materiel rated R18+.

      Than adults can play Video Games and we won’t have to worry about kids being exposed.

    • “… and shall continue to not be exposed to.” See, the problem is no-one ever finishes the sentence for them, leading to more concern over this than is actually necessary.

    • Yes, this really irks me. The introduction of R18+ isn’t going to mean more material gets here, it’s simply a redistribution of so many MA15+ games into their proper category of R18+. If the polticians aren’t aware of the content in these MA15+ games then it’s a huge issue, though that said it’s really the lobby groups that are pulling the pollies strings.

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