Several organisations take complaints about issues not in Ad Standards' jurisdiction.

Truth and accuracy

Issues about:

  • advertisements that do not comply with Commonwealth law or the relevant State/Territory law
  • misleading or deceptive advertising
  • misrepresentation in advertising, which is likely to cause damage to the business or goodwill of the competitor
  • the exploitation of community concerns in relation to portraying a product or service as benefiting the environment, if it does not
  • advertisements which make claims about the Australian origin or content of products in a manner which is misleading

should be directed to your State/Territory consumer protection agency or the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

Fair trading and consumer protection agencies:

If you are an advertiser and wish to complain about the conduct of a competitor, you may wish to contact the Ad Standards Industry Jury.

Television programming or program content

Issues about: 

  • content of a program or promotion eg sex, nudity, violence, coarse language
  • content of news and current affairs eg accuracy, fairness, invasion of privacy, objections to presenters/personalities
  • content in general eg repeats, amount of sport or other program types, general scheduling complaints or other comments/enquiries in relation to a program
  • the number of commercials shown in a program
  • the placement of a commercial (the time and the program the commercial was shown)
  • television show promotion eg advertisement for a television program on that station

Commercial television - please direct your complaint to the broadcaster in writing.

ABC or SBS Content - please direct your complaint to the ABC or the SBS in writing.

Subscription Television and Radio content - please direct your complaint to the Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association (ASTRA) after first contacting the station or broadcaster.

If you are unhappy with the broadcaster's response, or the station does not answer your complaint in 60 days, you may wish to contact the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). You must contact the station or broadcaster first.

Loudness and frequency of ads

Ad Standards does not consider complaints about the loudness or the frequency of advertisements being broadcast. Complaints of this nature should be referred to the particular broadcaster and/or FreeTV Australia.

Radio programming or program content

Please direct your complaint to the station first. 

If you are unhappy with the broadcaster's response or the station does not answer your complaint in 60 days, you may wish to contact the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).

Program classification

Please direct your complaint to FreeTV Australia if your concern is about:

  • accuracy, fairness and respect for privacy in news and current affairs
  • non-program time on television
  • placement of commercials and program promotions in regard to commercial free-to-air television.

Classifications of films, publications or computer games

The Classification Board is an agency within the Commonwealth Attorney-General's portfolio which processes applications, provides services to clients and the community, offers classification training programs, and is involved in developing classification policy.

Magazine or newspaper content

If your complaint concerns the content of material published in magazines, newspapers or associated digital outlets such as a website, you may wish to direct your complaint to the Australian Press Council.

The Australian Press Council is a self regulatory body set up by the print media industry, and acts as a forum for complaints about the press.

Human rights and equal opportunity issues

If your complaint is about discrimination on the grounds of race, colour or ethnic origin, racial vilification, sex, sexual harassment, marital status, pregnancy or disability, you may wish to direct your complaint to the Australian Human Rights Commission

Internet issues

If you wish to support or find out more information about internet regulation and initiatives in Australia, you may wish to visit the Communications Alliance website.

Telemarketing

The Australian Direct Marketing Association (ADMA) looks after direct marketing in Australia and issues such as privacy, telecommunications regulation, postal affairs, consumer satisfaction, fair trading and e-marketing.

You may wish to contact Australian Direct Marketing Association (ADMA) to remove your name from marketing lists which use your name, phone numbers and email details. The contact phone number is 1800 676 136.

You can register your number on the Do not call register or by phoning 1300 792 958.

Telephone and internet disputes

The Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) is a free and independent alternative dispute resolution scheme for small business and residential consumers in Australia with unresolved complaints about their telephone or internet services.

Before contacting the TIO, you must have tried to resolve your complaint with your provider. The TIO has the jurisdiction to deal with complaints about:

  • standard telephone service
  • mobile services
  • internet access
  • pay-phones
  • delays in telephone connections
  • printed and electronic White Pages
  • fault repair
  • privacy
  • land access
  • breaches of the Customer Service Guarantee and industry Codes of Practice.

Therapeutic goods

Advertisements for therapeutic goods in Australia are subject to the requirements of the Therapeutic Goods Act and Regulations, the Trade Practices Act and other relevant laws. Advertisements directed to consumers must also comply with the Therapeutic Goods Advertising Code. For further information, go to the Therapeutic Goods Administration.