Sony Digital Rapids Pixel Power calrec Sony

New rules to protect people in TV and radio shows

30/07/2019

New rules to protect people in TV and radio shows Add to Your Pages

29 July 2019

Ofcom is today proposing new rules to ensure that people who take part in television and radio shows are properly looked after by broadcasters.

We already have rules placing responsibilities on broadcasters around participants in programmes, and specific safeguards for people under-18.[1]

But there has been growing openness and concern in society about mental health and wellbeing in recent years. Ofcom has also seen a steady rise in complaints expressing concern about the welfare and wellbeing of people who take part in programmes.

Against this backdrop, we have been reviewing our existing protections for programme participants.[2]

New safeguardsToday we are proposing to add two new rules to our Broadcasting Code' to protect the welfare and wellbeing of people taking part in programmes on TV and radio.[3] These would include reality shows, documentaries, news and current affairs, phone-ins, quiz shows, talent contests and other forms of factual and entertainment programmes, but not drama, sitcoms or soaps.

The proposed rules are:

Due care must be taken over the welfare, wellbeing and dignity of participants in programmes.

Participants must not be caused unjustified distress or anxiety by taking part in programmes or by the broadcast of those programmes.

These rules reflect the fact that very different forms and levels of care may be appropriate, depending on the person participating, a programme's format and the nature of the participation.

We also wish to ensure that the proposed new rules do not make programmes less likely to feature people with vulnerabilities, as there is a clear public interest in their representation on TV and radio.

Guidance to support the rulesWe're planning to issue guidance to help broadcasters interpret and apply the new rules, and we are consulting today on the principles it should contain.

For example, guidance might include what broadcasters should do to look after participants before, during and after production. It would also consider editorial techniques involving participants, such as the use of lie detectors.

Taken together, the proposed rules and guidance are designed to ensure that broadcasters apply a consistent standard of care to people who take part in shows.

Tony Close, Ofcom's Director of Content Standards, said: People who take part in TV and radio shows must be properly looked after by broadcasters, and these rules would ensure that happens.

These new safeguards must be effective. So we're listening carefully to programme participants, broadcasters, producers and psychologists before we finalise them.

Next stepsWe are inviting feedback on the new rules and guidance by 23 September 2019. We will then issue our final decisions in the winter.

NOTES TO EDITORS

1. What rules already exist to protect people in programmes?

Ofcom's Broadcasting Code currently requires broadcasters to provide due care, and to avoid unnecessary distress or anxiety, for participants who are under 18. This is supported by detailed guidance on the measures broadcasters should take to protect minors before, during and after production.

The Code requires broadcasters to meet generally accepted standards' in their programmes. This includes providing context to minimise or avoid offence that might be caused when programmes feature humiliation, distress, or violation of someone's dignity.

The Code also gives recourse to people appearing in programmes to object to an unfair portrayal, or to an unwarranted infringement of their privacy.

For more, see Rules 1.28, 1.29, 2.3 and Sections Seven and Eight of the Broadcasting Code (PDF, 1.2 MB).

2. Since we began examining these issues, events surrounding the cancellation of ITV's Jeremy Kyle Show in May 2019 and high levels of public concern about aspects of reality and other types of TV programmes have underlined the importance of our review.

3. The proposed new rules would appear in Section Two of the Broadcasting Code which deals with Harm and Offence' appearing as Rules 2.17 and 2.18.

Add to Your Pages
LINK: https://www.ofcom.org.uk/__search/s/redirect?collection=web&url=https:...
See more stories from ofcom

More from OFCOM

07/11/2019

Ofcom appoints Jonathan Oxley as interim Chief Executive

Ofcom appoints Jonathan Oxley as interim Chief Executive Add to Your Pages 06 November 2019 The Ofcom Board has today announced that Jonathan Oxley will...

29/10/2019

Releasing airwaves for mobile services next year

Releasing airwaves for mobile services next year Add to Your Pages 28 October 2019 Ofcom updates on proposals to auction new frequencies Airwaves wil...

25/10/2019

Ofcom welcomes mobile firms' agreement to build a shared rural network'

Ofcom welcomes mobile firms' agreement to build a shared rural network' Add to Your Pages 25 October 2019 Ofcom spokesperson: We warmly welc...

24/10/2019

BBC risking 'lost generation' as younger audience tunes out

BBC risking lost generation as younger audience tunes out Add to Your Pages 24 October 2019 Reach of BBC TV among 16-24 year-olds drops below 50% for ...

14/10/2019

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from October to December 2017

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from October to December 2017 Add to Your Pages 14 October 2019 TalkTalk most complained-about home broadband and landl...

12/10/2019

Fairer prices for broadband customers

Fairer prices for broadband customers Add to Your Pages 11 October 2019 New measures to protect vulnerable customers from high prices and ensure they ...

10/10/2019

You'll never talk alone: Liverpool stakes claim as Britain's chattiest city

Youll never talk alone: Liverpool stakes claim as Britains chattiest city Add ...

07/10/2019

Ofcom's assessment of BBC Breakfast, BBC One, 17 July 2019

Ofcoms assessment of BBC Breakfast, BBC One, 17 July 2019 Add to Your Pages 07 October 2019 Ofcom has today published its assessment of BBC Breakfast ...

31/08/2019

London calling: Ofcom to release new '(020) 4' phone numbers

London calling: Ofcom to release new (020) 4 phone numbers Add to Your Pages 30 August 2019 10 million new London phone numbers to be made available t...

10/08/2019

Reappointment of Iain Stephen Morrison to MG ALBA board

Reappointment of Iain Stephen Morrison to MG ALBA board Add to Your Pages 09 August 2019 Ofcom has today announced the reappointment of Iain Stephen Mor...

07/08/2019

UK becomes a nation of streamers... but traditional broadcast TV leads the way on UK content

UK becomes a nation of streamers... but traditional broadcast TV leads the way o...

07/08/2019

Wales becomes a nation of streamers

Wales becomes a nation of streamers Add to Your Pages 07 August 2019 Almost half of homes in Wales now take Netflix, Amazon, Now TV or Disney Life Tr...

01/08/2019

Airwaves opened up to support wireless revolution

Airwaves opened up to support wireless revolution Add to Your Pages 25 July 2019 Start-ups and small businesses to get easier access to airwaves for n...

01/08/2019

Radio industry makes progress on diversity, but much further to go

Radio industry makes progress on diversity, but much further to go Add to Your Pages 31 July 2019 Ethnic minorities, disabled people and women in seni...

30/07/2019

Giffgaff fined 1.4m for overcharging customers

Giffgaff fined 1.4m for overcharging customers Add to Your Pages 30 July 2019 Ofcom has today fined the mobile company Giffgaff 1.4m, for overchargi...

30/07/2019

New rules to protect people in TV and radio shows

New rules to protect people in TV and radio shows Add to Your Pages 29 July 2019 Ofcom is today proposing new rules to ensure that people who take par...

26/07/2019

Ofcom fines RT 200,000

Ofcom fines RT 200,000 Add to Your Pages 26 July 2019 Ofcom has today fined the news channel RT 200,000 for serious failures to comply with our broa...

22/07/2019

New measures to increase fairness for mobile customers

New measures to increase fairness for mobile customers Add to Your Pages 22 July 2019 Mobile customers must be told cost of buying handsets and airtim...

19/07/2019

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from July to September 2017

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from July to September 2017 Add to Your Pages 18 July 2019 Ofcom has today published data on the volume of consumer com...

05/07/2019

Hundreds of new digital radio stations for local listeners

Hundreds of new digital radio stations for local listeners Add to Your Pages 05 July 2019 Hundreds of new local digital radio stations could start bro...

28/06/2019

End it with a text: easy mobile switching from Monday

End it with a text: easy mobile switching from Monday Add to Your Pages 28 June 2019 Mobile users can leave current network with a simple text message...

28/06/2019

Ofcom confirms new rules for business networks

Ofcom confirms new rules for business networks Add to Your Pages 28 June 2019 Ofcom has today confirmed final decisions on our reviews of: the physic...

25/06/2019

Ofcom appoints new Chair and members to Advisory Committee for England

Ofcom appoints new Chair and members to Advisory Committee for England Add to Your Pages 25 June 2019 Ofcom today announced the appointment of three n...

18/06/2019

Stamping out unfair practices in telecoms and TV

Stamping out unfair practices in telecoms and TV Add to Your Pages 17 June 2019 New guidelines to help ensure telecoms and TV companies treat customer...

10/06/2019

Rem Noormohamed appointed to Ofcom's Advisory Committee for Wales

Rem Noormohamed appointed to Ofcom's Advisory Committee for Wales Add to Your Pages 10 June 2019 Ofcom today announced the appointment of Rem Noor...

07/06/2019

Countdown to the new broadband safety net

Countdown to the new broadband safety net Add to Your Pages 06 June 2019 Ofcom appoints BT and KCOM to deliver the UKs broadband universal service fro...

07/06/2019

Sharon White to step down as Ofcom Chief Executive

Sharon White to step down as Ofcom Chief Executive Add to Your Pages 06 June 2019 The Ofcom Board has today announced that Sharon White is to step dow...

03/06/2019

Britain's biggest broadband and phone firms to put fairness first

Britains biggest broadband and phone firms to put fairness first Add to Your Pages 03 June 2019 UKs major broadband, mobile, pay-TV and home phone fir...

30/05/2019

People's online experiences revealed

Peoples online experiences revealed Add to Your Pages 29 May 2019 Adults now spend almost 50 days of their year online Increased internet concern, th...

24/05/2019

Further Ofcom rules to support fibre investment

Further Ofcom rules to support fibre investment Add to Your Pages 24 May 2019 New rules give rival firms better access to Openreachs infrastructure M...

16/05/2019

Broadband, phone and pay TV firms must tell customers about their best deals

Broadband, phone and pay TV firms must tell customers about their best deals Add to Your Pages 15 May 2019 New Ofcom rules will help people get the be...

16/05/2019

Ofcom statement on care of programme participants

Ofcom statement on care of programme participants Add to Your Pages 15 May 2019 It's vital that people taking part in reality and factual shows ar...

10/05/2019

Marion Sinclair appointed to MG ALBA board

Marion Sinclair appointed to MG ALBA board Add to Your Pages 09 May 2019 Ofcom has today announced the appointment of Marion Sinclair to the board of ...

09/05/2019

Broadband speeds boost for UK homes

Broadband speeds boost for UK homes Add to Your Pages 08 May 2019 Average broadband speeds rise by a fifth in a year Superfast customers can stream iPl...

04/05/2019

Ofcom appoints two new members to the Advisory Committee for Scotland

Ofcom appoints two new members to the Advisory Committee for Scotland Add to Your Pages 02 May 2019 Ofcom today announced the appointment of two new m...

01/05/2019

Best and worst telecoms customer service revealed

Best and worst telecoms customer service revealed Add to Your Pages 30 April 2019 Ofcom shines a light on major broadband and phone companies performa...

01/04/2019

Money back for broadband and landline customers when things go wrong

Money back for broadband and landline customers when things go wrong Add to Your Pages 31 March 2019 Automatic compensation from 1 April to ensure fai...

11/03/2019

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from April to June 2018

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from April to June 2018 Add to Your Pages 11 March 2019 Complaints about communications providers decline to record low...

09/03/2019

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from July to September 2018

Telecoms and pay-TV complaints from July to September 2018 Add to Your Pages 30 January 2019 Ofcom has today published the latest league tables on the...

28/02/2019

Clear, honest information before you buy broadband

Clear, honest information before you buy broadband Add to Your Pages 28 February 2019 New protections are part of Ofcom's work to ensure Fairness ...

29/01/2019

Why children spend time online

Why children spend time online Add to Your Pages 29 January 2019 New research explains how YouTube taps into kids' interests Live' TV remain...

06/01/2019

Ringing the changes: do phone numbers still matter?

Ringing the changes: do phone numbers still matter? Add to Your Pages 05 January 2019 Britons spend half as much time on the landline but use ten ti...

27/12/2018

Most complained about TV programmes of 2018

Most complained about TV programmes of 2018 Add to Your Pages 27 December 2018 Celebrity Big Brother was the television programme that attracted most ...

20/12/2018

Update on investigations into the RT news channel

Update on investigations into the RT news channel Add to Your Pages 20 December 2018 Ofcom has today found that the RT news channel broke broadcasting...

19/12/2018

Ofcom response to the CMA's super-complaint report

Ofcom response to the CMA's super-complaint report Add to Your Pages 19 December 2018 Lindsey Fussell, Ofcom's Consumer Group Director, said: ...

18/12/2018

Getting rural areas connected in Wales

Getting rural areas connected in Wales Add to Your Pages 18 December 2018 Mobile and broadband coverage improve, but more progress needed in rural are...

18/12/2018

Getting rural areas connected

Getting rural areas connected Add to Your Pages 18 December 2018 Mobile and broadband coverage improve, but more progress needed in rural areas New O...

14/12/2018

Half of homes could boost their broadband

Half of homes could boost their broadband Add to Your Pages 14 December 2018 Millions could get faster internet today without paying more, research re...

10/12/2018

Ofcom appoints new Content Board member

Ofcom appoints new Content Board member Add to Your Pages 10 December 2018 Ofcom has appointed Stephen Nuttall to its Content Board. Ofcoms Content B...

03/12/2018

Ofcom sets out work programme for 2019/20

Ofcom sets out work programme for 2019/20 Add to Your Pages 03 December 2018 Ofcom has today set out its planned programme of work for the next financ...