Classification of Audiovisual Programmes
Audiovisual Programmes supplied in Finland must be classified unless exempt from classification.
Act on Audiovisual Programmes (NB: Unofficial translation, Legally binding only in Finnish and Swedish Ministry of Education and Culture, Finland August 17, 2011)
Right to classify audiovisual programmes
An audiovisual programme may only be classified by an audiovisual programme classifier trained and approved by the Department for Media Education and Audiovisual Media (MEKU) as well as by an official of the Department for Media Education and Audiovisual Media whose duties include classification. List of certified classifiers here.
Audiovisual programmes detrimental to the development of children
Audiovisual programmes are considered to be detrimental to the development of children if they by virtue of violent or sexual content or properties causing anxiety or any other comparable features, are likely to detrimentally affect children’s development.
When assessing the detrimental nature of an audiovisual programme, the context and manner in which the programme’s events are described must be taken into consideration.
Classification of audiovisual programmes
If an audiovisual programme is detrimental to the development of children, it shall be classified with an age limit of 7, 12, 16 or 18, depending on the programme’s content, and be given a symbol that describes the detrimental content of the programme. If there is no reason to consider the programme to be detrimental to the development of children, it shall be classified as suitable for all ages.
Programmes that are unambiguously produced for people aged 18 or more are not classified. Programmes of this type may only be provided if a label indicating an age limit of 18 is clearly displayed on or in connection with the programmes.
The Department for Media Education and Audiovisual Media approves an age limit and a symbol describing digital game content given by PEGI for use in Finland, without the programme being classified in Finland.
Online classification system and registry of classifiers
The Department for Media Education and Audiovisual Media maintains and develops an online classification system for audiovisual programmes. MEKU supervises operations of the independent classifiers, and keeps a registry of all the classifiers.