Ethics and Regulations for Communication Practice (ACG5100) considers a range of ethical, regulatory and legal issues surrounding the 'new media' and 'old media' and telecommunications and the internet; in an age of convergence, globalisation and deregulation. The unit also considers Australian consumer laws, industry and market trends, the role of industry peak bodies and codes of practice, as well as the role of the Commonwealth government and its super-regulator the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), as well as the role of other key authorities including the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), and the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO). The unit also focuses on laws related to media ownership rules, defamation, reputation management and protection, copyright and other aspects of intellectual property, deceptive conduct and false representation, privacy protection, censorship and whistleblower protection.

Unit details

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Discuss and articulate the interconnections of ethical, regulatory and legal issues relevant to professional practice in communication industries or other work and community settings impacted upon by communication practice;  
  2. Critically apply ethical principles to public relations and communications practice;  
  3. Evaluate the roles of Codes of Ethics or Codes of Practice as they apply in different industry settings; and  
  4. Extrapolate the key legal concepts relevant to communications practices to contemporary cases, including media law as it relates to issues of defamation, reputation protection, copyright and intellectual property, negligence and contracts, deceptive conduct and false representation sections of Australian Consumer Law.  


Assessment type Description Grade
Journal Produce a short reflection on the required reading/s and class discussion, submitting a folio of 5 preferred journal entries. 30%
Presentation Class presentation from a set list of topics, including: ethical behaviour in organisational settings, codes of ethics and ‘ethics literacy'. 30%
Essay Research and produce an essay (specific questions provided) on one of the inter-related themes. 40%
Minimum effective word limit 5000 words.

Required reading

Legal and Ethical Issues in the Media 1st
Dwyer, T 2012
Pagrave Macmillan

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