REVISED ONLINE SAFETY CODES
Under the Online Safety Act, industry associations must develop codes of practice to protect Australians from Class 1 content under Australia’s classification scheme. Once in effect, these codes will create industry-wide protections for Australians in relation to materials such as child sexual exploitation material, pro-terror content, and extreme crime and violence.
Industry associations released a revised draft of the codes for a second round of public consultation. Views were sought from 9 to 23 March 2023. The consultation period has now closed. Submissions (where consent has been given to publish) will be published here shortly.
The associations are now considering the feedback received through submissions and preparing final drafts of the codes together with an updated request for registration and submissions log, for the Office of eSafety Commissioner.
The codes will be enforceable by the Office of the eSafety Commissioner for eight sections of the online industry, including social media services, providers of relevant electronic services (includes any services with messaging, and gaming), providers of designated internet services (includes all websites in Australia), providers of internet search engine services, providers of app distribution services, providers of hosting services, providers of internet carriage services, and persons who manufacture, supply, maintain or install certain equipment (includes retailers).
2022 Consumer research
The eSafety Position Paper notes that appropriate forms of consultation may include working groups, focus groups, surveys or web forums. In addition to submissions, DIGI and Communications Alliance commissioned independent research, undertaken by Resolve Strategic, to provide an evidence-base of the expectations of the general Australian public. A nationally representative study on issues relevant to the codes was undertaken during the consultation period from September 13 –18 , 2022.
2022 Expert roundtable
On September 13, 2022, DIGI and Communications Alliance hosted an expert stakeholder roundtable, focused on key issues related to the codes. The roundtable was held under Chatham House Rules, and we have published a high level summary of the input received.
2022 Submission log
In 2022, industry associations ran a longer public consultation process to draft development, proactively contacting over 200 expert stakeholders and closely considering input from 88 submissions that informed updates to the draft codes.
Industry associations created a log that extracts the key feedback from each submission received (where the submitter has given permission to publish) with notes on how this feedback has been considered in the finalisation of the codes.
In 2022, 88 submissions from organisations and members of the public were received. Submissions from this consultation period, where the submitter has granted permission to publish are available for download below.