Films and Publications Amendment Act

Link to law: http://www.gov.za/documents/films-and-publications-amendment-act
Published: 2004-11-02

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Films and Publications Amendment Act [No. 18 of 2004]


Government Gazette
REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA

Vol. 473 Cape Town 2 November 2004 No. 26950
THE PRESIDENCY No. 1296 2 November 2004
It is hereby notified that the President has assented to the following Act, which is hereby published for general information:–
No. 18 of 2004: Films and Publications Amendment Act, 2004.

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Act No. 18,2004 FILMS AND PUBLICATIONS AMENDMENT ACT, 2004
GENERAL EXPLANATORY NOTE:
r ] Words in bold type in square brackets indicate omissions from existing enactments. Words underlined with a solid line indicate insertions in existing enactments.
. . .
(English text signed by the President.) (Assented to 28 October 2004.)
ACT To amend the Films and Publications Act, 1996, so as to make further provision for the prohibition of child pornography; to provide anew for the designation of the Chairperson of the Review Board; to make certain textual alterations; to make further provision regarding the classification of films and publications; to provide for the registration of internet service providers; to provide for an obligation to report offences involving child pornography; and to increase penalties for offences involving child pornography; and to provide for matters connected therewith.
B E IT ENACTED by the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa, as follows:- Amendment of section 1 of Act 65 of 1996, as amended by section 1 of Act 34 of 1999
1. Section 1 of the Films and Publications Act, 1996 (hereinafter referred to as the “principal Act”) is hereby amended- 5
(a) by the substitution for the definition of “child pornography” of the following
“‘child pornography’ includes any image, however created, or any description of a person, real or simulated, who is, or who is depicted or described as being, under the age of 18 years- 10
definition:
(i) engaged in sexual conduct; (ii) participating in, or assisting another person to participate in,
sexual conduct; or (iii) showing or describing the body, or parts of the body, of such a
person in a manner or in circumstances which, within context, 15 amounts to sexual exploitation, or in such a manner that it is capable of being used for the purposes of sexual exploitation;”;
(b) by the deletion of the definition of “degrade”; ( c ) by the substitution for the definition of “distribute” of the following
“‘distribute’, in relation to a film or a publication, without derogating from the ordinary meaning of that word, includes to sell, hire out or offer or keep for sale or hire and, for purposes of sections 25(a), ( b ) and (c), 26( l)(n) and (b) and 28( 1) and (2), includes to hand or exhibit a film or a publication to a person under the age of 18 years, and also the failure to take reasonable steps to prevent access thereto by such a person;”;
definition: 20
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Act No. 18,2004 FILMS AND PUBLICATIONS AMENDMENT ACT, 2004
(d) by the insertion after the definition of “film” of the following definitions: “ ‘Internet address’ means a website, a bulletin board service, an Internet chat-room or newsgroup or any other Internet or shared network protocol address; ‘Internet service provider’ means any person who carries on the business 5 of providing access to the Internet by any means;”;
(e ) by the insertion, after the definition of “Minister” of the following definition: “‘possession’, in relation to a film or publication, without derogating from its ordinary meaning, includes keeping or storing in or on a computer or computer system or computer data storage medicm and also having custody, control or supervision on behalf of another person;”;
(f) by the insertion after the definition of “Review Board” of the following definition:
“ ‘sexual conduct’ includes- (i) male genitals in a state of arousal or stimulation; (ii) the undue display of genitals or of the anal region;
(iii) masturbation; (iv) bestiality; (v) sexual intercourse, whether real or simulated, including anal
sexual intercourse; (vi) sexual contact involving the direct or indirect fondling or
touching of the intimate parts of a body, including the breasts, with or without any object;
(vii) the penetration of a vagina or anus with any object; (viii) oral genital contact; or (ix) oral anal contact;”.
Amendment of section 4 of Act 65 of 1996
2. Section 4 of the principal Act is hereby amended-
“( 1) The Board shall consist of- (a) by the substitution for subsection (1) of the following subsection:
(a) a [chief executive officer] chairperson and a deputy chairperson, appointed by the Minister as non-executive members; and
(b) the chief executive officer and such number of senior personnel, chief examiners and examiners as the Minister may determine having regard to the likely volume of applications and complaints which will be submitted to the Board in terms of this Act.”;
“(2) [The chief executive officer shall be the chairperson of the Board] (b) by the substitution for subsection (2) of the following subsection:
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In the absence of the chairperson the deputy chairperson shall act as 40 chairperson.”;
(c ) by the insertion after subsection (2) of the following subsection: “(2A) The chairperson or deputy chairperson and such number of the
persons contemplated in subsection (l)(b) as is equal to one half of the total number of such persons shall constitute a quorum of the Board.”; and 45
“(4) Decisions of the Board and the xecutive committee shall be taken by a majority of votes, and in the case of an equality of votes the chairperson of the [Board] meeting shall have a casting vote.”.
(d) by the substitution for subsection (4) of the following subsection:
Amendment of section 5 of Act 65 of 1996 50
3. Section 5 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the substitution for subsection
“(2 ) A member of the Review Board designated by the [President] Minister shall act as chairperson of the Review Board during the chairperson’s absence.”.
(2) of the following subsection:
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Act No. 18,2004 FILMS AND PUBLICATIONS AMENDMENT ACT, 2004
Amendment of section 14 of Act 65 of 1996
4. Section 14 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the substitution for subsection
“( 1) As soon as practicable after the end of each financial year the chairperson of the Board shall, from information supplied to [it] the Board by the chief 5 executive officer and the chairperson of the Review Board, compile a report on all the activities of the Board and Review Board during that financial year, and on the financial position of the Board and Review Board as at the end of that financial year.”.
(1) of the following subsection:
Amendment of section 15 of Act 65 of 1996 10
5. Section 15 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the substitution for paragraph
“(a) shall, whenever it becomes necessary for the performance of the functions [the exercise of the powers or the carrying out of the duties] of the Board or the executive committee, convene a meeting of the Board or the executive committee, 15 as the case may be: Provided that a meeting of the Board may only be convened at the request of, or in consultation with, the chairperson of the Board.”.
(a) of the following paragraph:
Substitution of section 17 of Act 65 of 1996
6. The following section is hereby substituted for section 17 of the principal Act:
“Classification of publications 20
or with reference to Schedule 10- (a) (i) classify the publication as-
(aa) XX, if it falls within either Schedule 1 or 10; or (bb) X18, if it falls within Schedule 2; or
(ii) where it is necessary to protect children from disturbing or harmful materials, determine that the publication only be distributed to persons of, or above, a specified age and may impose the condition that it only be distributed in a sealed and opaque wrapper which bears a distinct notice of the specified age restriction; and
(b) inform the chief executive officer of- (i) its decision;
(ii) the reasons therefor; (iii) the classification, if any; (iv) in the case of an XX classification based on Schedule 1, of the
particular item of Schedule 1 upon which that decision is based; and
(v) in the case of an age restriction, of the conditions imposed. (2) The chief executive officer shall-
(a) where a publication submitted in terms of section 16(1) has been classified as X18 or XX in terms of a decision of the Board, cause that decision to be published in the Gazette;
(b) where a publication submitted in terms of section 16(2) has been reclassified as X18 or XX or freed from all restrictive conditions, including an X18 or XX classification, which was published in the Gazette, cause the latest classification to be published in the Gazette and, with reference to the previous classification, indicate that it has been substituted or withdrawn, as the case may be.
( 3 ) Where a particular issue of a periodical publication has been classified as X 18 and subsequent issues are likely to contain material which would, upon submission, cause such issues to be classified as X18, the chief executive officer shall, with the consent of the publisher, classify such subsequent issues as X18.
17. (1) A classification committee shall examine a publication referred to it and shall, with reference to Schedules 1, 2, 3 or 4, read with Schedule 5,
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(4) Any person who intends to publish, distribute or exhibit in public any publication containing a visual presentation or description referred to in Schedule 1 or 2, shall submit such publication for classification, in the manner prescribed by regulations made under section 31(2), prior to its distribution or exhibition.”.
Amendment of section 18 of Act 65 of 1996
7. Section 18 of the principal Act is hereby amended- (a ) by the insertion, after subsection ( I ) , of the following subsection:
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10 “(1A) Any person who intends to distribute or exhibit any film- ( a ) shall register with the Board as a distributor or exhibitor, or a
distributor and exhibitor, of films: and (b) shall submit for classification any film which is intended for
distribution or exhibition in the Republic and which has not 15 been classified or approved in terms of this Act or in terms of the Publications Act, 1974 (Act No. 42 of 1974),
in the manner prescribed by regulations made in terms of section 31(2).”; and
(b) by the substitution in subsection (4) for paragraph (a ) of the following 20 paragraph:
“(a) The classification committee shall examine a film referred to it in terms of subsection (2) and shall, with reference to Schedules 6 ,7 and 8, read with Schedules 9 and 10, classify that film-
(i) as XX, if it falls under Schedule 6 or 10;
(iii) by imposing any restriction in accordance with Schedule 8; (ii) as X18, if it falls under Schedule 7;
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(iv) as a film which may be distributed or exhibited only after the prescribed age restriction and consumer information, where applicable, have been clearly and conspicuously displayed 30 on all materials advertising that film or, in the case of a home entertainment product, on the cover or packaging of that film; or
(v) as a film without any restrictions if suitable for all ages.”.
Amendment of section 20 of Act 65 of 1996, as amended by section 6 of Act 34 of 35 1999
8. Section 20 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the deletion, in subsection (3) , of the proviso.
Amendment of section 25 of Act 65 of 1996
9. Section 25 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the substitution for paragraph 40
“(c) distributes any publication in conflict with any condition imposed on such a (c) of the following paragraph:
publication in terms of section 17;”.
Amendment of section 26 of Act 65 of 1996
10. Section 26 of the principal Act is hereby amended- 45 (a ) by the substitution in subsection (1) for paragraph ( a ) of the following
“(a) exhibits in public or distributes any film which has not been classified by the Board [, or which has been classified as XX in terms of a decision of the Board which has been published in SO the Gazette]:”;
paragraph:
(6 ) by the insertion in subsection ( 1 ) after paragraph ( a ) of the following
“(nA) exhibits in public or distributes or broadcasts any t i l m which has paragraph:
been classified as XX in accordance with Schedule 6 or 10;”: 5.5
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(c) by the substitution in subsection (1) for paragraph (b) of the following paragraph:
“(b) exhibits in public or distributes or broadcasts any film which has been classified as X18 contrary to the provisions of section 24;”; and
(d) by the substitution in subsection (1) for paragraph (e) of the following
“(e) without the approval of the chief executive officer, exhibits in public during the same screening session, or distributes on the same film, an advertisement or a trailer of a film with a more restrictive classification than the featured film;”.
paragraph:
Amendment of section 27 of Act 65 of 1996, as amended by section 8 of Act 34 of 1999
11. Section 27 of the Principal Act is hereby amended- (a) by the substitution for subsection (1) of the following subsection:
“(1) (a) Any person shall be guilty of an offence if he or she- (i) is in possession of;
(ii) creates or produces or in any way contributes to, or assists in, the
(iii) imports or in any way takes steps to procure, obtain or access; or (iv) knowingly exports, broadcasts or in any way distributes or causes
a film or publication which contains child pornography or which advocates, advertises or promotes child pornography or the sexual exploitation of children.
(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to a person who is in possession of a film or publication containing child pornography if such possession is necessary for the performance of any function in terms of this Act.”;
creation or production of;
to be exported, broadcast or distributed,
(b) by the substitution for subsection (2) of the following subsection: “(2) (a) A person shall be guilty of an offence if he or she, having
knowledge of the commission of an offence under subsection (1) or having reason to suspect that such an offence has been or is being committed-
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(i) fails to report such knowledge or suspicion as soon as possible to
(ii) fails to furnish, at the request of an official of the South African
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(b) No prosecution under this subsection shall be instituted without the
a police official of the South African Police Service; or
Police Service, all particulars of such knowledge or suspicion.
written authority of the National Director of Public Prosecutions.”; 40 (c) by the substitution for subsection (3) of the following subsection:
“(3) Any person who has under her or his control any material referred to in Schedule 1, 2, 6 or 7 and who fails to take all reasonable steps to prevent access to such materials by a person under the age of 18 years shall be guilty of an offence.”; and
(d) by the addition of the following subsection: “(4) Subject to Schedule 5 or 9, as the case may be, the Board shall
refer to the South African Police Service for prosecution any film or publication submitted to it in terms of this Act if it contains child pornography. ” .
Insertion of section 27A in Act 65 of 1996
12. The following section is hereby inserted in the principal Act after section 27:
“Registration and other obligations of Internet service providers
27A. (1) Every Internet service provider shall- (a) register with the Board in the manner prescribed by regulations made
(b) take all reasonable steps to prevent the use of their services for the under this Act; and
hosting or distribution of child pornography.
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Act No. 18,2004 FILMS AND PUBLICATIONS AMENDMENT ACT, 2004
(2) If an Internet service provider has knowledge that its services are being used for the hosting or distribution of child pornography, such Internet service provider shall- (a) take all reasonable steps to prevent access to the child pornography by
any person; (b) report the presence thereof, as well as the particulars of the person
maintaining or hosting or distributing or in any manner contributing to such Internet address, to a police official of the South African Police Service; and
(c) take all reasonable steps to preserve such evidence for purposes of investigation and prosecution by the relevant authorities.
(3) An Internet service provider shall, upon request by the South African Police Service, furnish the particulars of users who gained or attempted to gain access to an Internet address that contains child pornography.
(4) Any person who fails to comply with the provisions of this section shall be guilty of an offence.”.
Amendment of section 28 of Act 65 of 1996
13. Section 28 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the deletion of subsection (3).
Amendment of section 29 of Act 65 of 1996 20
14. Section 29 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the substitution in subsection
“Any person who knowingly broadcasts or distributes a publication which, judged within context-”.
(1) for the words preceding paragraph (a) of the following words:
Amendment of section 30 of Act 65 of 1996 25
15. Section 30 of the principal Act is hereby amended- (a) by the substitution for subsection (1) of the following subsection:
“( 1) Any person found guiity of a contraventFon of section 25(a), (b) or (c), 26( l)(a), (aA), (6) or If), 26(4), 27(2) or ( 3 ) , 27A, 28( 1) or (2) or 29 may be sentenced to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not 30 exceeding five years or to both a fine and such imprisonment.”;
(b) by the insertion after subsection (1) of the following subsection: “( 1A) Any person found guilty of a contravention of section 27(1)
may be sentenced to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding ten years o to both a fine a d such imprisonment.”; 35
(c) by the substitution for subsection (3) of the following subsection: “(3) Any person found guilty of a contravention of any other section
of this Act may be sentenced to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months.”; and
(d) by the addition of the following subsection: 40 “(4) (a) If any person who has contravened or failed to comply with
section 26( l)(a), (aA), (b), (c), (d), (2) or ( 3 ) or 27A( 1) agrees to abide by a decision of the executive committee of the Board and deposits with the Board such sum as the executive committee of the Board may determine but not exceeding the greater of two thousand rand or twice the prescribed classification costs on each such contravention or failure
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an enquiry, determine the matter summarily and may, without legal to comply, the executive committee of the Board may, after conducting
proceedings, order forfeiture by way of penalty of the whole or any part 50 of the amount so deposited.
(6) There shall be a right of appeal to the Minister from any determination or order of the executive committee of the Board under paragraph (a), as long as that right is exercised within a period of three months from the date of such determination or order.
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(c) The imposition of a penalty under paragraph (a) shall not be regarded as a conviction in respect of a criminal offence but no prosecution for that offence shall thereafter be competent.”.
Insertion of sections 30A and 30B in Act 65 of 1996
16. The following sections are hereby inserted in the principal Act after section 30: 5
“Extra-territorial jurisdiction
30A. (a) Any citizen or permanent resident of the Republic who commits any act outside the Republic which would have constituted an offence under I this Act had it been committed within the Republic, shall be guilty of the offence which would have been so constituted and liable to the penalty prescribed for such offence in this Act.
(b) No prosecution under this section shall be instituted without the written consent of a Director of Public Prosecutions.
(c) For the purpose of this section, any court in the Republic and any Director of Public Prosecutions shall have jurisdiction.
Presumptions and proof
30B. (1) If in any prosecution in terms of this Act it is proved that- (a) any message or communication, including a visual presentation, was
placed on any distributed network, including the Intemet, by means of the access provided or granted to a registered subscriber or user, it shall be presumed, in the absence of evidence to the contrary which raises reasonable doubt, that it was so placed by the registered subscriber or user;
(b) access was gained or attempted to be gained to child pornography on a distributed network, including the Internet, by means of the access provided or granted to a registered subscriber or user, it shall be presumed, in the absence of evidence to the contrary which raises reasonable doubt, that such access was gained or attempted to be gained by the registered subscriber or user.
(2) If in any prosecution it is necessary to prove that- (a) any application for registration or classification in terms of this Act has
or has not been made to the Board; or (b) any publication or film has or has not been submitted to the Board in
terms of this Act; or (c) any decision or classification has or has not been made or that any
restriction or condition has or has not been imposed by the Board in terms of this Act; or
(d) a certificate of exemption has or has not been issued, granted, withdrawn, cancelled or suspended by the Board; or
(e) a decision or classification of the Board has or has not been suspended by the Review Board,
a certificate, issued under the authority of the executive committee of the Board, shall, upon its mere production, be prima facie proof of such fact.”.
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Amendment of Schedule 1 to Act 65 of 1996 45
17. Schedule 1 to the principal Act is hereby amended- (a) by the deletion of items (l)(a) and (2); (b) by the substitution for item (l)(c) of the following subitem:
(c) by the the substitution for item (l)(d) of the following subitem: “fc) bestiality, incest or rape;”.
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“(d) explicit sexual conduct which violates or shows disrespect for the right to human dignity of any person or which degrades a person or which constitutes incitement to cause harm; or”.
Amendment of Schedule 2 to Act 65 of 1996
18. Schedule 2 to the principal Act is hereby amended by the substitution for item ( 2 ) of the following item:
“(5) it describes predominantly and explicitly any or all of the acts mentioned in Schedule 1 or item (l).”
Substitution of Schedule 3 to Act 65 of 1996
19. The following Schedule is hereby substituted for Schedule 3 to the principal Act:
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“SCHEDULE 3
AGE RESTRICTIONS FOR PUBLICATIONS
A classification committee or the Review Board may impose any or both of the following conditions on the distribution of a publication if, judged within context, it is necessary to protect children in the relevant age
(a) That it shall only be distributed to persons older than 18 years of age, group against harmful or disturbing material in the publication:
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or older than a specified younger age, and that the publication shall bear a distinct notice of such restriction;
(b) that it shall only be distributed in a sealed and, if necessary, opaque 20 wrapper which shall also, if applicable, bear the notice referred to in paragraph (a).”.
Amendment of Schedule 6 to Act 65 of 1996
20. Schedule 6 to the principal Act is hereby amended- (a) by the deletion of item (1); (b) by the substitution for item ( 2 ) of the following item:
“ ( 2 ) bestiality, incest or rape;”; (c) by the substitution for item (3) of the following item:
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“(3) explicit sexual conduct which violates or shows disrespect for the right to human dignity of any person or which degrades a person or 30 which constitutes incitement to cause harm;”; and
(d ) by the deletion of item (4).
Substitution of Schedule 10 to Act 65 of 1996
21. The following Schedule is hereby substituted for Schedule 10 to the principal Act:
“SCHEDULE 10 35
PROMOTION OF HATRED
(1) A film or publication which, judged within context, advocates hatred that is based on race, ethnicity, gender or religion and constitutes incitement to cause harm, shall be classified XX.
(aj a bona $de scientific, documentary, artistic, dramatic, literary or religious film or publication, or any part thereof which, judged within context, is of such a nature;
(b) a film or publication which amounts to a bona $de discussion, argument or opinion on a matter pertaining to religion, belief or 45 conscience; or
argument or opinion on a matter of public interest.”.
(2) Item (1) shall not apply to- 40
(c) a film or publication which amounts to a bona jide discussion,
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Repeal of Schedule 11 to Act 65 of 1996
22. Schedule 11 to the principal Act is hereby repealed.
Short title
23. This Act is called the Films and Publications Amendment Act, 2004.