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Sep 13, 2010

The day Free TV Australia didn’t like a bit of free speech

Last week Free TV Australia banned an advertisement calling for euthanasia reform made by Exit International on the basis that ad “promoted suicide”. In fact, the ad contrasts the strong levels of public support for euthanasia with its lack of support by the government.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

Last week the advertising vetting arm of the commercial television oligopoly’s peak body, Free TV Australia, banned an advertisement calling for euthanasia reform made by Exit International on the basis that ad “promoted suicide”. In fact, the ad contrasts the strong levels of public support for euthanasia with its lack of support by the government.

28 comments

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28 thoughts on “The day Free TV Australia didn’t like a bit of free speech

  1. Delerious

    I’m not sure what Free TV is but having some group arbitrarily ban adds because of some personal agenda and which looks to be attacking free speech is interesting. Would like to hear more about this group and who they think they are.

  2. twobob

    The irony is that many of these people who block euthanasia laws will die painful lingering deaths. How smart must a person be to realise that on issues such as this many of their own loved ones and even themselves will suffer needlessly.
    Not that the law will stop me when my turn comes.

  3. sickofitall

    Surely the solution to this would have been to offer the other side an ad at approximately the same time (at their expense, of course).

    Too many idiots run the idiot box. Church attendance in Australia is paltry – yes it grew by 50% over the last decade, but as that took total church attendance to about 2%, and that more than 50% of those churches are of the ‘liberal’ or ‘left wing’ variety, we’re talking about so few people as to not matter.

    I’m not saying euthanasia is a cut and dried issue. I’m not saying it’s easy. I’m not saying I have the answer, or even that I necessarily agree with Philip Nitschke. But I believe that these issues need discussion in open and fair environments.

  4. Syd Walker

    Each of these cases that Bernard mentions in this article is quite outrageous.

    Free TV is apparently another bunch of tax-payer funded control freakery that needs root and branch reform.

    Perhaps that could begin with its Orwellian name?

  5. John

    Free TV Australia is an industry body which represents all of Australias commercial free-to-air television licencees.

  6. David Allen

    Righto! I will never, ever, ever make a purchase of anything from Harvey Norman, Joyce Mayne or The Good Guys until voluntary euthanasia laws are passed in Queensland.

    You can believe me, I’m not a politician.

  7. Salamander

    Can’t have people in extremis making rational decisions – it will wreck the advertising industry. God, next thing the plebs will simply be deciding to give up junk food and unsafe levels of drinking.

  8. guytaur

    A preview of what would happen if the internet filter passes.
    Political Advertising which this is should have legal protections against censorship.

  9. freecountry

    What was the reason given for banning the Timor Sea ad?

  10. nicolino

    Free TV Australia is much the same as having the police investigate themselves.You can fool some of the people some of the time but….

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