Press Release 17/2014
Consultation Document on the
Code for the Protection of Minors in Broadcasting
The Broadcasting Authority has launched another consultation document with the proposed amendments to the Legal Notice on the Protection of Minors. This is considered to be one of the most important themes in broadcasting legislation and is an ever present topic for discussion during international fora.
This consultation document seeks to elicit feedback from all interested parties on amendments which the Broadcasting Authority believes should be incorporated under the Broadcasting Act to ensure that such an important topic as the protection of minors is adequately addressed.
The current legal notice tends to focus extensively on the impact of advertising on children but does not address other equally important aspects of programming in general including the actual participation of children on various programmes.
Pierre Cassar, the Chief Executive of the Broadcasting Authority stressed that there is an urgent need for the legislative framework to be amended to address the ever changing scenario of the broadcasting sector. The amendments being put forward for discussion include provisions focusing on the social, physical and psychological well being of minors. This would ensure that minors are adequately protected from potentially unsuitable content which they may encounter from time to time. In addition, these amendments will further assist broadcasting channels as they establish benchmarks which all radio and television stations would be expected to follow.
Given the overarching concepts that are being proposed, the new title for this Legal Notice will become: “Code for the Protection, Welfare and Development of Minors on the Broadcasting Media”.
This is the second consultation document which the Authority has published following the one on the correct use of the Maltese language. This is yet another opportunity for stakeholders to submit their feedback on the topic.
The deadline for submission is October 15th 2014 and the Authority is hopeful that it will receive adequate feedback on the proposed changes to the Broadcasting Act from all parties concerned.
Head Research & Communications
5th September 2014