Currently in Australia television networks are limited to 14 to 15 mins of ad’s every hour, but channels 7 and 9 are looking to change this and increase the advertising time to 20 minutes per hour. Both of these networks are currently lobbying the federal government to implement this increase of an extra 5 mins of advertising time. Channel 10 is currently strongly opposing the move. A spokesman for Channel 10 has stated that, “Seven and Nine would opportunistically like to do this, but Ten won’t agree. There’s zero chance Ten will agree to it.”

If channel’s 7 and 9 are successful, Australia will have the highest ratio of advertising on TV compared to any other Western country. In the UK they are limited to 12 minutes per hour, whereas in the USA, they have 17 – 18 mins per hour.

Currently networks have been known to breach the rule on more popular programs, airing up to 20 minutes of ads during their most popular programs, which they currently balance out by running fewer ads on the programs that run directly after the popular program.

Harold Mitchell, Free TV chairman, told The Australian the industry was looking at a model that would take into account not upsetting viewers. He said: “We’re always very aware there can be too much ad content from time to time, and the viewers are very conscious of it, so there needs to be a balance. It’s under careful review.”

What do you think of the idea of an extra 5 – 6 minutes of advertising? What are your thoughts about this?