(From an opinion piece published on ABC Online).
Before it came along, we were served by a revolving series of moral panics, changing censorship ministers and a patchwork of different state systems. Many books and films were banned that today would hardly warrant a mention - I wonder how many high schools would not allow "The Trial of Lady Chatterley" a place in their libraries? In the sordid history of censorship in Australia, the creation of a national system under the Hawke government in 1984 at least gave us something that was uniform and understandable, and led to a slight loosening of a system that was much more puritanical than the citizens it served.
Our classification code has done its duty for these last 30 years or so. As a reward, it deserves to be given a nice cup of hot chocolate, and wheeled outside to enjoy the sunshine of its retirement.
Recent debates over the classification of computer games and internet content have revolved around the edges of the classification scheme - what content goes into which rating. But these sorts of debates are missing the bigger picture. The future of classification itself must now be doubted.