Welcome to our website full of information and resources for teachers and students investigating censorship as part of Level 1 Media Studies. We've pulled together some links from around the site, as well as created some new resources, to help you if you are studying standard 1.7: Demonstrate an understanding of the rules that govern the media in New Zealand.
In the Classification Law section of this website you'll find a page called Censorship Law in New Zealand. This page gives an overview of the Films, Videos, and Publications Classification Act 1993, the legislation which governs the classification of films, books, video games and other publications.
Remember our office does not deal with TV or radio. You should visit the Broadcasting Standards Authority site for information on how these are governed.
The censorship system works differently for different publications – for example, not all films are examined by the Classification Office, and we generally only deal with music when someone makes a complaint. This section of our website also has information on books and magazines, games, cellphones and the Internet.
Sometimes the best way to learn about censorship in New Zealand is to see examples of how the law has been applied to different publications. Our Resources section has case studies on films, video games and graphic novels, as well as case studies on animation and the genre of horror.
This page has answers to some of the questions students send us, including:
The Advertising Standards Authority deals with what advertisers are and aren’t allowed to show in ads. It is industry run and not a government agency. Go to the ASA's website
The New Zealand Federation Against Copyright Theft was established in 2005 by the Motion Picture Association to protect the film industry in New Zealand from copyright theft. To find out more about film copyright issues contact NZFACT. Go to NZFACT's website
The New Zealand Press Council was established in 1972 as an industry self-regulatory body. Its role is to provide an independent forum for resolving complaints involving the press. Go to the Press Council's website
The Telecommunications Carriers Forum is an industry group that works on the development of key industry standards and codes of practice. Most major internet service providers are members. Go to the TCF's website