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Media and Communications Industry Regulation - LAWS8054
 Law Books

Faculty: Faculty of Law
School:  Faculty of Law
Course Outline: See below
Campus: Kensington Campus
Career: Postgraduate
Units of Credit: 6
EFTSL: 0.12500 (more info)
Indicative Contact Hours per Week: 2
Enrolment Requirements:
Academic Program must be 9231 or 5231 or 9220 or 5750 or 9200 or 5740 or 9210 or 9230 or 9214 or 5214.
CSS Contribution Charge:Band 3 (more info)
Further Information: See Class Timetable


The Media and Communications industry players operate in a network of direct, co-, and self regulation which continues to change rapidly in response to technological, structural and social change. This course will look in detail at that regulation, particularly in the telecommunications and broadcasting industries and seek to answer the hard question of where it's all going.

LLM Specialisation

Recommended Prior Knowledge

Study of media and communications law at undergraduate level.

Course Objectives

The course proposes to teach law students about the network of regulation that affects the media and communications industries in Australia, particularly the broadcasting and telecommunications industries. The course aims to identify regulation that is legislative, co-regulatory and self regulatory and contrast these different approaches. The specific knowledge will be taught against the backdrop of key values, issues and concepts such as free speech, the need for a plurality of views in a democratic society, media power and influence, digitization and the rapid technological and structural convergence thus challenging students to ask and develop answers to the questions of why, who, what and how we regulate these industries.

Main Topics

Carriage Regulation
  • Intro to key technical concepts and systems in telecommunications
  • Access to infrastructure, services and spectrum.
  • Interconnection issues and pricing
  • Anti-Competitive conduct
  • Consumer Protection mechanisms
Content Regulation
  • Role and powers of ACMA
  • Digitally delivered television, radio and new services
  • Media Ownership and Control policy, rules and regulations
  • Models of content regulation across delivery platforms
  • Classification systems, codes, standards and licence conditions
  • Non-broadcasting services and cracks in the regulatory system


Class participation Preparation and engagement in class 20%
Class presentation 40%
Research essay 3,000 words 40%

Course Texts

Australian Telecommunications Regulation: Communications Law Centre Guide, UNSW Press, 2004 ,3rd edition.

  • Lexis Nexus, Communications Law and Policy In Australia, Leonard P, Henderson A (loose leaf) 1987.
  • Oxford University Press, Connect and Converge: Australian Media and Communications Law, 2007, Scott Beatie and Elizabeth Beale, 1st edition: Chapters 1 and 2
  • There will also be a pack of photocopied materials which have to be purchased from the UNSW Law Faculty.


There will also be a pack of photocopied materials which have to be purchased from the UNSW Law Faculty.

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© The University of New South Wales (CRICOS Provider No.: 00098G), 2004-2011. The information contained in this Handbook is indicative only. While every effort is made to keep this information up-to-date, the University reserves the right to discontinue or vary arrangements, programs and courses at any time without notice and at its discretion. While the University will try to avoid or minimise any inconvenience, changes may also be made to programs, courses and staff after enrolment. The University may also set limits on the number of students in a course.