Publication Details

McLelland, MJ, Australia's proposed internet filtering system : its implications for animation, comic and gaming (ACG) and slash fan communities, Media international Australia, incorporating Culture & policy, 134, 2010, 7-19. Copyright School of Journalism and Communication, The University of Queensland 2010. Original journal article available here


This paper investigates the implications of the Australian Government’s proposed Internet filtering system in the light of Australia’s blanket prohibition of ‘child pornography’ (including cartoons, animation, drawings, digitally manipulated photographs, and text) for Australian fan communities of ACG and slash. ACG/slash fan groups in Australia and elsewhere routinely consume, produce and disseminate material containing ‘prohibited content’ (i.e. featuring fictitious ‘under-age’ characters in violent and sexual scenarios). Moreover, a large portion of the fans producing and trading in these images are themselves ‘under age’. Focusing specifically upon the overwhelmingly female fandom surrounding Japanese ‘Boys’ Love’ (BL) manga, the paper argues that legislators have misrecognised the nature and scope of these online communities. It is also argued that the sheer scale of this kind of material, and the fact that it is legal for download and purchase in jurisdictions such as the US and Japan, make attempts to prohibit access to these purely fictional depictions in Australia unworkable.

Link to publisher version (URL)

University of Queensland