The New Zealand government has decided to legislate to require Internet TV services to provide age ratings using a self rating scheme overseen by the country's film censor.
Movies and shows available through internet television services such as
Netflix and Lightbox will need to display content classifications in a similar way to films and shows released to cinemas and on DVD, Internal Affairs Minister Tracey Martin has announced.
The law change, which the Government plans to introduce to
Parliament in November, would also apply to other companies that sell videos on demand, including Stuff Pix.
The tighter rules won't apply to websites designed to let people upload and share videos, so videos on YouTube's main site won't need to
display classifications, but videos that YouTube sells through its rental service will.
In a compromise, internet television and video companies will be able to self-classify their content using a rating tool being developed by the Chief Censor,
or use their own systems to do that if they first have them accredited by the Classification Office.
The Film and Literature Board of Review will be able to review classifications, as they do now for cinema movies and DVDs.
decided against requiring companies to instead submit videos to the film censor for classification, heeding a Cabinet paper warning that this would result in hold-ups.