Less than half of young Australians believe having local screen industry is ‘very important’

The younger Australians are, the less likely they are to believe that having a local screen industry is very important, a poll carried out for Screen Australia suggests.

According to the survey, less than half of all 14 to 29-year-olds felt that it was very important for Australia to have a local film and TV industry producing Australian stories.

In every other age group, well above half of thsoe surveyed said it was very important.

The survey, compiled by Auspoll on behalf of Screen Australia and released today, was taken last month of 1000 Australians aged 14 years and older.

The survey arrives as the argument over Australia’s local content quota and its contribution to Australian culture and economy is building in the face of the media convergence review currently being carried out bythe Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy.

Broadcast media companies and organisations want the local content regulation eased, as Screen Australia and content creators look to uphold the quota. Both parties are using the current strength of local content and local TV ratings as the backbone of their argument.

Ruth Harley, Screen Australia’s chief executive, said: “This new research demonstrates the value Australians place on Australian content and how important our stories are to the cultural fabric of our society. While we acknowledge the tangible economic benefits of the screen industry, we must also acknowledge the myriad of ways that Australian stories contribute to our social belonging and sense of national identity.”

The respondents were also asked to cite the most important benefit of a local screen industry.

The highest proportion of respondents, 21%, selected the statement “to make sure Australian culture isn’t overwhelmed by American culture”.

In equal second place, scoring 13% was “the employment opportunities that the Australian film and TV industry brings” and “making sure that Australian stories and important events from the past are told and recorded”.

Only 7% selected “the contribution that the Australian film and TV industry makes to the economy”.


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