Ofcom Watch

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  Ofcom Slaps Down ATVOD's Grasping Hands...

Ofcom overrules ATVOD and confirms that the VOD censor has successfully driven Playboy TV's website offshore to Canada


Link Here 29th September 2013
playboy tv logoAfter getting in trouble for not following ATVOD's overly restrictive and unviable child protection rules, Playboy TV decided to move the Playboy TV website (and Demand Adult website) offshore to Canada.

However ATVOD would not accept that Playboy had actually moved the editorial control of the website to Canada and felt that it should there continue to be subject to ATVOD rules.

ATVOD's reasons cited for their refusal to accept the move seem particularly spurious. From the Ofcom adjudication:

In particular, ATVOD noted the following features of the website as evidence that the Service remained within UK jurisdiction:

  • a. The contact information (as at 14 September 2012) on the Service was for the UK address of the company Playboy TV UK / Benelux Ltd .
  • b. Terms and Conditions on the Service refer to being governed by English Law .
  • c. Domain registration data suggested that the Service is not registered in Canada, but in America.
  • d. The overall design and layout of the Service had not changed since the apparent transfer to Canada.

ATVOD also noted an email of 10 September 2012, provided by the Service Provider, from the Head of Digital and New Media at Playboy TV UK / Benelux Limited to the Canadian Product Manager. ATVOD argued this email suggested that the UK Service Provider retained editorial responsibility for the Service.

Playboy decided to appeal to Ofcom about ATVOD's claim. Playboy responded to ATVOD's points:

In particular, Playboy noted that:

  • a. The fact that the Services' Terms and Conditions referred to are bound by UK Law and payments taken by a UK company had no bearing on editorial control .
  • b. The Services' American Domain registration, again, had no bearing on editorial control .
  • c. The Montreal-based company had decided the current design of the Service was sufficient and the redesign of a website is a lengthy process.

In relation to the email of 10 September 2012 cited by ATVOD, the Appellant stated that ATVOD had misrepresented its position and that, in fact, it uploaded videos to the Service as they become available and, as such, no editorial decisions are taken in the UK.

Ofcom made a few enquiries about staff responsibilities and accepted that editorial responsibility had been transferred to Canada:

In relation to the points cited by ATVOD, Ofcom broadly accepts the Appellant's explanations for the features noted by ATVOD. In particular, although the features noted could be indicative, cumulatively, of a service editorial responsibility for which has not changed, it is not determinative and evidence that there had been a genuine reorganisation including redundancies in the UK and the taking on of responsibilities by staff in Montreal is persuasive.

Ofcom upholds the Playboy's appeal and substitutes ATVOD's decision with Ofcom's Decision, that the Playboy TV did not fulfil the criterion in section 368A(1)(c) of the Act as at 24 July 2012 and therefore was not the provider of an online video service subject to ATVOD regulation.

ATVOD whined:

The success of their appeal means that they [Playboy TV] can continue providing hard-core internet porn to UK consumers beyond the reach of British regulation.

 

  Same Old Arrogant Censorship...

Ofcom release Annual Plan for 2013-14


Link Here 27th September 2013
Ofcom logoOfcom seem to be under the delusion that they are somehow working for citizen interests. They introduce their Annual Plan:

Ofcom's main priority is to ensure that UK communications markets work to support consumer and citizen interests. Ofcom's strategic purposes are to:

  • maintain audience confidence in broadcast content;

  • protect consumers from harm;

  • promote opportunities to participate;

  • promote effective competition and informed choice;

  • contribute to and implement public policy defined by Parliament; and

  • secure optimal use of spectrum.

I didn't spot anything specific about TV censorship beyond looking to encroach on internet censorship. Ofcom seems set on exploiting David Cameron's claim that viewers somehow expect Internet TV to be as repressively controlled as broadcast TV because they are now watching it on the same device, ie an internet connected TV.

Ofcom is inviting comments about the plans until 24th October 2013.

 

 Update: Imaginary Doorman...

Ofcom has a whinge at Playboy TV Chat for being too sexy at midnight


Link Here 25th September 2013  full story: Babe Channels...Ofcom have it in for free to air babe channels

playboy tv chat logoPlayboy TV Chat
28 May 2013, 00:00

Playboy TV Chat is a free to air babe channel. Viewers are invited to contact on-screen presenters via premium rate telephony services ( PRS ). The female presenters dress and behave in a sexually provocative way while encouraging viewers to contact the PRS numbers.

The licence for this channel is owned by Playboy TV UK/Benelux Ltd.

Ofcom received a complaint that a female presenter was simulating sex on the channel between 00:00 and 00:30.

Ofcom noted that during this time a sequence was shown in which the left hand side of the screen was filled by a door. The right hand side showed a table and a female presenter, partially obscured by the door. The presenter was lying on the table, sometimes on her front and sometimes on her back, with the bottom half of her body hidden by the door but with the naked top half of her body visible to the viewer. The presenter then simulated that she was having sex with an unseen partner behind the door. At one point, the female presenter knelt by the door and simulated that she was performing oral sex on an unseen man behind the door.

Ofcom considered Rule 4.2 of the BCAP Code:

Advertisements must not cause serious or widespread offence against generally accepted moral, social or cultural standards.

Ofcom Decision: Breach of Rule 4.2

On 4 February 2013, Ofcom published revised guidance on the advertising of telecommunications-based sexual entertainment services and PRS daytime chat services (the Guidance )1. The Guidance sets out what Ofcom considers to be acceptable to broadcast on these services post-watershed2. Ofcom has also made clear in a number of published decisions the type of material that is unsuitable to be broadcast in adult chat advertising content which is available without mandatory restricted access.

The Guidance states that broadcasters should at no time broadcast images of any real or simulated sex acts (these include vaginal or anal intercourse, masturbation, fellatio or cunnilingus).

Between 00:00 and 00:30 the female presenter adopted a variety of sexual positions with the clear intention of making viewers think that she was having sex with an unseen partner who was behind the door. The presenter was nude. For the most part she simulated that she was having sex by thrusting backwards and forwards while lying on the table. She also simulated that she was performing oral sex. At one point the impression was given that a man had ejaculated onto her breasts.

Ofcom noted the Licensee's argument that the level of nudity was relatively low. However, in Ofcom's view the intention of the producer and the presenter was to give the impression to viewers that the presenter was taking part in real sexual acts, which was clearly at odds with the Guidance. In Ofcom's view the broadcast of this material in adult chat advertising content was likely to cause serious or widespread offence against generally accepted moral, social or cultural standards.

Ofcom noted the apology provided by the Licensee and the assurances given to Ofcom that this was a one-off error which would not occur again. However, this material was clearly in breach of BCAP Code Rule 4.2.

Ofcom has recorded a number of breaches of the BCAP Code by this Licensee since we issued the Guidance. We are therefore requiring the Licensee to attend a meeting at Ofcom to discuss its compliance arrangements.

 

  New Brooms...

TV censor appoints 3 new members to the Content Board


Link Here 19th September 2013
Ofcom logoOfcom has announced the appointment of three new members to its Content Board.

The Content Board is the committee of the main Ofcom Board with delegated responsibility for TV and radio content issues, including setting and enforcing quality and standards. It includes members who represent each of the four nations of the UK.

The new appointments are:

Andrew Chitty

Andrew is the founder and Executive Director of Digital Life Sciences, which uses online technologies to deliver better healthcare services.

Andrew Colman

Andrew served for 13 years as Head of News & Current Affairs for BBC Northern Ireland and as a member of its senior management board. He has extensive experience of radio and television production.

Lesley McKenzie

Previously Group Digital Officer at LOVEFiLM, Lesley is Chief Operating Officer for Engage Sports Media, a digital production studio specialising in sports programming and distribution.

The appointments take effect on 18 September 2013.

 

 Updated: The Wrong Kind of War Story...

Peers complain about the German publisher of WW2 magazine


Link Here 14th September 2013
Landser Winter experiences stories ebook A member of the house of Lords has written to Ofcom complaining that the military magazine Der Landser publishes content that glorifies German soldiers in the 2nd World War.

Monroe Palmer feels that this should disqualify the magazine's publisher, Bauer Media , from holding a broadcasting licence for Absolute Radio, which it recently acquired.

His voice is adding to several others trying to indirectly censor Bauer's magazines. Banker Bruce Fireman and another peer, Greville Janner, are also supporting the complaints.

Deidre Berger, director of the Ramer institute for German-Jewish relations explained the opposition to Bauer in an interview. She claimed the magazine encouraged young people:

To have an affinity for world war two. They're glorifying the war, and leaving out completely any mention of Germany 's responsibility for the holocaust.

Der Landser is a magazine that writes about Germany's role in the war as if the people about whom it writes were not war criminals, and some of them were.

Bauer told the BBC that the magazine complied with German law. It neither trivialised nor glorified war crimes.

Update: Ofcom Investigating

7th September 2013. See  article from  independent.co.uk

Ofcom logoOfcom has announced it is in contact with German authorities as it investigates whether Kiss FM owner Bauer is a fit and proper broadcaster, after complaints that it publishes a magazine that is said to glorify German Second World War soldiers.

Ofcom has contacted Germany's Federal Review Board for Media Harmful To Minors, the censor responsible for monitoring issues such as coverage of war atrocities.

Bauer said none of its publications trivialise or glorify National Socialism or war crimes

Update: War Censors

14th September 2013. See  article from  express.co.uk

bauer media logoBowing to international pressure, Bauer Media has announced it would stop publication of Second World War title Der Landser (The Squaddie).

The Simon Wiesenthal Centre has claimed that the magazine was making the Third Reich acceptable to a new generation of Germans.

Jewish leaders were appalled that the magazine included tributes to the brutal Waffen-SS. The director of Global Jewish Advocacy, Deidre Berger, claimed:

They encourage young people to have an affinity with World War Two. They are glorifying it and leaving out any mention of Germany's role in the Holocaust.

Bauer insisted it had been legal saying a German lawyer concludes that Der Landser complies fully with the stringent legislation in Germany and neither glorifies nor trivialises National Socialism. Its statement announced it has decided to cease publishing the series .

 

 Update: Brown Nosing the Daily Mail...

Ofcom whinge at a pixellated bare bottom on Britain's Got More Talent


Link Here 10th September 2013  full story: UK TV Talent Shows...A talent for whingeing

britains got more talent scarlet video Britain's Got More Talent ITV2
13 April 2013, 20:35,
14 April 2013, 17:30
17 April 2013, 06:30 and 13:25

Britain's Got More Talent is the companion show to the ITV talent series Britain's Got Talent, which aims to find an unknown star from the general public to perform at the annual Royal Variety Performance.

A complainant alerted Ofcom to scenes of nudity in the episode broadcast on 13 April 2013 at 20:30.

Ofcom viewed a recording and noted a performance by Scarlet around 20:55, which included the following:

Scarlet unzipped, dropped and stepped out of her dress entirely, leaving her wearing only a necklace and with a feather boa to cover her body (which she picked up from a chair at this point). She turned to the audience to reveal her naked bottom, which she wiggled. This sequence consisted of: a two second close-up of Scarlet unzipping the back of her dress; a two second mid shot of her wriggling her bottom out of the dress; a one second close up of her bottom; a two second long to mid zoom showing Scarlet in wide shot with her naked bottom to the audience; a two second mid shot of Scarlet shaking her naked bottom to the audience; and a later one second shot of Scarlet shaking her naked bottom to the audience. The images were pixellated and intercut with shots of the audience and the judges' reactions.

At the end of the routine, Scarlet turned back to the audience, her feather boa covering her front, and presenter Declan Donnelly came on stage and handed her a dressing gown.

Ofcom considered Rule 1.3 of the Code, which states:

Children must...be protected by appropriate scheduling from material that is unsuitable for them.

Ofcom Decision: Breach of Rule 1.3

The performance in question was a burlesque act, which is a variety genre characterised by flirtatious comedy, mime, dancing and striptease. We noted that this performance as a whole lasted approximately 90 seconds and contained shots of Scarlet removing her dress and shaking her naked bottom at the audience (as set out in the Introduction). We noted that from the point when Scarlet removed her dress, there were five individual shots totalling around 10 seconds giving particular focus to her naked and pixellated buttocks.

As already pointed out Ofcom guidance states that: It is important to note that in pre-watershed content, Ofcom would not expect to see singers and dancers wearing clothing that does not adequately cover their bodies (in particular their breasts, genital area and buttocks) .

Ofcom considered in this latest broadcast that the nudity was more evident than the previous case due to the frequency and close-up nature of some of the images of the performer's naked buttocks. While we noted the nudity was pixellated, Ofcom disagreed with ITV and considered it was of limited effectiveness and did not sufficiently obscure the performer's naked buttocks.

Taking into account the level of detail in this sequence, Ofcom did not consider that the Licensee had taken adequate steps to limit the images of nudity. The frequency and detail of these images in context of a striptease in a burlesque act meant that on balance they were not suitable for children.

Breaches of rule 1.3

 

  BBC Trust to be Paid Off?...

Government plan to move the censorship of the BBC from the BBC Trust to Ofcom


Link Here 8th September 2013
BBC TrustCensorship of the BBC could be moved from the BBFC Trust to Ofcom.

The Sunday Times has reported that the plans are seen as evidence of the government's anger at the scandal-prone corporation, most lately about recent generous payoffs to senior staff. Chris Patten and Mark Thompson are due to appear before the Commons Public Accounts Committee (PAC) tomorrow for a showdown about the payments.

Chris Heaton-Harris, a Conservative member of the PAC, said:

Whoever is telling the truth here, it is clear that the governance of the BBC by the Trust is broken. It has clearly failed to adequately scrutinise the way the corporation has been spending public money.

A senior source at the Culture, Media and Sport department said:

It is clear that the trust, which is both a cheerleader for the BBC and its regulator, does not work. There are contradictions.

Under the plans the BBC would be run on similar lines to Channel 4, which is publicly owned but censored by Ofcom. The corporation has been subject to Ofcom regulation on matters of obscenity, privacy and harm, since 2007, but has maintained its independence on questions of editorial impartiality. The plan would require primary legislation, and would take effect from the BBC's next charter beginning in January 2017.

Tessa Jowell, the former Labour culture secretary who set up the trust, said it should remain as the voice of the licence fee payer and warned that Ofcom might become too powerful..

 

 Updated: The Wrong Kind of War Story...

Peers complain about the German publisher of WW2 magazine


Link Here 7th September 2013
Landser Winter experiences stories ebook A member of the house of Lords has written to Ofcom complaining that the military magazine Der Landser publishes content that glorifies German soldiers in the 2nd World War.

Monroe Palmer feels that this should disqualify the magazine's publisher, Bauer Media , from holding a broadcasting licence for Absolute Radio, which it recently acquired.

His voice is adding to several others trying to indirectly censor Bauer's magazines. Banker Bruce Fireman and another peer, Greville Janner, are also supporting the complaints.

Deidre Berger, director of the Ramer institute for German-Jewish relations explained the opposition to Bauer in an interview. She claimed the magazine encouraged young people:

To have an affinity for world war two. They're glorifying the war, and leaving out completely any mention of Germany 's responsibility for the holocaust.

Der Landser is a magazine that writes about Germany's role in the war as if the people about whom it writes were not war criminals, and some of them were.

Bauer told the BBC that the magazine complied with German law. It neither trivialised nor glorified war crimes.

Update: Ofcom Investigating

7th September 2013. See  article from  independent.co.uk

Ofcom logoOfcom has announced it is in contact with German authorities as it investigates whether Kiss FM owner Bauer is a fit and proper broadcaster, after complaints that it publishes a magazine that is said to glorify German Second World War soldiers.

Ofcom has contacted Germany's Federal Review Board for Media Harmful To Minors, the censor responsible for monitoring issues such as coverage of war atrocities.

Bauer said none of its publications trivialise or glorify National Socialism or war crimes

 

  Ofcom Threatens Broadcasters...

TV violence warning issued and research commissioned after censuring Channel 4 for fatal fight in Hollyoaks


Link Here 28th August 2013
hollyoaks train death Ofcom published the following statement in the latest complaints bulletin:

Violence in pre-watershed programmes

Ofcom reminds television broadcasters of the need to ensure that all material broadcast pre-watershed which features violent scenes is appropriately limited. Broadcasters should consider whether individual acts of violence within a programme are suitable, as well as where the overall tone is malevolent, menacing and threatening, that this also remains suitably limited.

Given the lack of recent detailed studies specifically into viewers' attitudes to violence on television, Ofcom has commissioned new independent research on this subject. This research will further inform us about the level of concern about violence included in television programmes scheduled before and immediately after the watershed, and any areas of particular concern to viewers e.g. specific types of violence or genres of programme. The research should be complete this year and Ofcom plans to publish the results as soon as possible in 2014.

The statement was related to Ofcom's censure of a fight scene in Hollyoaks.

Hollyoaks
Channel 4, 19 March 2013, 18:30

Hollyoaks is a long running British television soap drama set in a fictional suburb of Chester called Hollyoaks. It features a large cast of characters primarily aged between 16 and 35. Its main target audience is teenagers and young adults. The programme is broadcast each weekday evening on Channel 4.

Hollyoaks regularly deals with controversial storylines such as sexual abuse, domestic violence and drugs. A complainant alerted Ofcom to a scene in this programme, in which one of the main characters was violently killed by a speeding train. The viewer considered this scene was unsuitable for broadcast before the watershed, particularly as children might have been watching. The scene in question marked

The scene in question marked the conclusion of a long running revenge storyline between two characters: the former undercover policeman, Walker, and the former drug dealer, Brendan. Walker believed Brendan was responsible for the death of his brother Cam, who had died from taking drugs supplied by Brendan. This scene was broadcast at 18:54. From the point at which the characters first made physical contact with one another to the immediate aftermath of the train collision was one minute and nine seconds in duration.

Although the intention was clearly to show an intense fight between these characters, Ofcom particularly noted that, overall, where punches and kicks were exchanged the movements of arms, fists and legs were tightly edited to avoid showing any shots of the actual impact and the use of fast paced music gave the scenes a stylised tone.

In addition, there were no images depicting the impact of the train as it hit Walker, or its aftermath.

Ofcom considered, however, that the cumulative effect of the violent fight scene taken together with Walker being hit by the train, broadcast well before the watershed, raised issues warranting investigation under:

  • Rule 1.3: Children must...be protected by appropriate scheduling from material that is unsuitable for them.

  • Rule 1.11: Violence, its after-effects and descriptions of violence, whether verbal or physical, must be appropriately limited in programmes broadcast before the watershed...and must also be justified by context.

Ofcom Decision: Breach of Rules 1.3 and 1.11

This episode featured a particularly aggressive fight sequence, ending with one character being pushed into the path of an oncoming train and so to his violent death. The fight sequence itself was carefully edited not to show the actual point of impact of most of the numerous punches and kicks. However, it was clearly intended to leave viewers with the impression that both characters experienced violent punches to the head and the body, as was evident from the blood on their faces as a result of these blows, the impact sounds of the physical contact between the characters, and the groans and moans from the characters as a result of the violence.

In this case it is Ofcom's view that this scene was both violent and shocking and had the potential to distress younger viewers as well as raise concerns about the level of violence amongst parents watching with their children regardless of the editorial context presented or the signposting provided.

For all these reasons Ofcom considered that it was unsuitable for children. Ofcom then went on to consider whether this material was appropriately scheduled. We have set out above in some detail the nature of the violent content in this programme that Ofcom considered unsuitable for children. Ofcom also assessed the nature of the violent scenes as part of its consideration of whether they were appropriately scheduled.

In summary, Ofcom's view was that while the fight sequence was limited in duration it was intense and the climactic scene where Walker was pushed into the path of a speeding train was both shocking and unexpected.

Ofcom acknowledged that the Licensee took steps in attempt to ensure that this sequence complied with the Code. These measures were however on balance insufficient. Ofcom concluded that cumulatively the violent content in this sequence exceeded viewers' expectations for a drama transmitted long before the watershed when young children were available to view and in this case were watching in large numbers. Ofcom, therefore, concluded that the episode was in breach of Rule 1.3.

In summary, Ofcom's view was that the cumulative effect of the violence in the final scene was not sufficiently limited for this time of the evening, nor was it justified by context given that a significant number of younger children were viewing and available to view. Ofcom therefore concluded that this episode was in breach of Rule 1.11.

Breaches of Rules 1.3 and 1.11

Comment: Mediawatch-UK soundbite

29th August 2013. See article from telegraph.co.uk

Vivienne PattisonVivienne Pattison, director of Mediawatch-uk, said there was a concern that because of the success of late-night dramas such as The Fall and Ripper Street, which deal with serial killers, there were signs that violence was beginning to be seen as more acceptable before the 9pm watershed. She added:

I think it is good that Ofcom are coming in now and reminding broadcasters that violence is not acceptable, but I just hope that when broadcasters are found in breach Ofcom can show its teeth

 

 Update: Less than the Fines for Being Too Sexy Though...

Ofcom Fines Noor TV and Takbeer TV for inciting violence


Link Here 24th August 2013  full story: Ofcom on Religion...ofcom keep religious extremism in check

NOOR TVNoor TV

Al Ehya Digital Television Ltd in respect of its service Noor TV has been fined £85,000 for inciting violence.

The programme Paigham-e-Mustafa was found to be in breach of Ofcom's Broadcasting Code rules:

  • Rule 3.1: Material likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime or to lead to disorder must not be included in television or radio services.
  • Rule 4.1: Broadcasters must exercise the proper degree of responsibility with respect to the content of programmes which are religious programmes.

Noor TV is a digital satellite television channel that broadcasts programmes about Islam in a number of languages, including English, Urdu and Punjabi. It can be received in the United Kingdom, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

The Finding related to the programme Paigham-e-Mustafa, broadcast on 3 May 2012. The programme featured a presenter, Allama Muhammad Farooq Nizami who answered questions about a wide range of issues and personal conduct relating to Islam and Islamic teachings.

At approximately one hour and 18 minutes into the programme Nizami answered a question from a caller, who was identified as brother Yasir Hanif who asked: What is the punishment for the individual who shows disrespect for Prophet Muhammad? Nizami responded:

There is no disagreement about this [the punishment]; there is absolutely no doubt about it that the punishment for the person who shows disrespect for the Prophet is death. No one [among the Islamic scholars] disagrees about this. No one disagrees about this. The Koran, hadeeth [orally transmitted quotes of Muhammad], the actions of the companions of Prophet Muhammad, all testify to this [punishment] and there is no room for doubt in it. Whoever shows disrespect for Prophet Muhammad will be given death penalty. The procedure for carrying out the death penalty is that if there is an Islamic government operating in a country, then the Islamic government will carry out the implementation of this punishment to the one who shows disrespect for the Prophet. However, if there are no Islamic laws [implemented], if Islamic Law is not being abided by, if the Islamic Law is being shredded and is in tatters, and this environment prevails in Pakistan, then [drops the sentence]. You saw a few months ago, a man specifically said that the Islamic law which was especially designed to protect the sanctity of Prophet Muhammad, whom Allah praises and protects, was a black law. By saying so, he slighted the law and committed insolence against Prophet Muhammad. Then what happened? You saw what happened. The man who did it [killed the Governor] is Mumtaz Hussein. He is a Ghazi and we can absolutely not say that his act was a wrong act [because] the Koran and hadeeth [orally transmitted traditions], testify that the punishment of the one who shows disrespect for the Prophet is death.

Ofcom considered the breach of Rule 3.1 in this case was particularly serious given the wide audience reach of the channel and the fact that the statements were delivered to a Muslim audience, in a religious programme, by a presenter who was held out to be an expert on Islamic teaching; a person who holds a position of authority and respect within the Muslim community, speaking direct to camera. Taken together, these factors would have given the comments extra weight. The seriousness of the breaches was further compounded by the fact that the Programme made no condemnation of any killing or violent action by individuals in response to a perceived insult to, or perceived blasphemy against, Mohammed.

The potential for these comments to be acted upon is demonstrated by evidence of a number of very serious threats and attacks having been made in Western countries against individuals or entities perceived as insulting or making pejorative remarks about the Prophet Mohammed. Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh was murdered by Muhammad Bouyeri in 2004 following the condemnation of his film Submission by Islamic clerics, and in the same year Danish cartoonists received death threats following the publication of illustrations which included depictions of the Prophet Mohammed. In November 2011, there was a fire bomb attack on a magazine in Paris for publishing a satirical cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed.

Takbeer TV

Takbeer TVTakbeer TV Ltd has been fined £25,000 for breaches of Ofcom's Broadcasting Code:

  • Rule 4.1: Broadcasters must exercise the proper degree of responsibility with respect to the content of programmes which are religious programmes.
  • Rule 4.2: The religious views and beliefs of those belonging to a particular religion or religious denomination must not be subject to abusive treatment.

Two programmes, both of which were broadcast in Urdu:

Global Khatm-E-Nabuwat Movement – Broadcast on 9 June 2012 at 22:00, this was a two and a quarter hour ‘phone-in’ programme in which a panel of four people answered telephone callers’ questions on issues of Islamic theology;

Ofcom noted that:

  • members of the Ahmadi community were described in words that amounted to abusive treatment of the Ahmadiyya religion and the Ahmadi community more generally. For example, they were described as having monstrous intentions and being both lying monsters and worthy of elimination by Allah, by using worms and vermin ;
  • one of the panellists and a caller made statements that were highly abusive to members of the Ahmadi community and their beliefs, by, for example, equating such beliefs to having piles and agreeing that Ahmadis require operating on ... without ... anaesthesia ; and
  • two callers made sustained, repeated and derogatory references to Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani, founder of the Ahmadiyya religion , stating, for example, that the whole world knows... Mirza died in a shit cubicle.

Khatm-E-Nabuwat – Broadcast on 3 July 2012 at 22:00, this was a two hour
programme that showed the proceedings of a symposium4 on Islamic themes held in  Luton.

Ofcom noted in particular that the presenter:

  • stated that Ahmadi holy books were: replete with filth ;
  • said the word 'Qadiani' is ... detestable ; and
  • described the Ahmadi religion as filth .

 

 Update: Ofcom Fines Sangat TV 30K for inciting violence...

Compared with the previous Ofcom fine of 40K for advertising an adult website


Link Here 16th August 2013  full story: Ofcom on Religion...ofcom keep religious extremism in check
sangat logoSangat TV is a general entertainment satellite broadcaster that broadcasts in English and Punjabi. It is based in Birmingham and broadcasts via the Eutelsat 28A, Sky UK satellite to the Sikh community. The licence for Sangat TV is held by Regis Ltd.

Ofcom had already found Sangat TV to be in breach of Ofcom rule 3.1 in finding published on 21 January 2013 in Broadcast Bulletin 2224. Rule 3.1 states:

Material likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime or to lead to disorder must not be included in television or radio services.

The Finding related to a programme about the attack on Lieutenant-General Brar, which was broadcast on 1 October 2012. This was broadcast almost entirely in Punjabi, was approximately half an hour in duration and comprised eight panellists, including a presenter, who discussed issues surrounding the attack. It had been reported that on a date shortly before the broadcast, while on a visit to London, Lieutenant-General Brar and his wife had been attacked in a central London street by four men. Despite suffering knife injuries, Lieutenant-General Brar survived the attack. In the Finding, Ofcom noted that, in relation to the attack, two men of Sikh origin had been charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

Ofcom found that the programme was likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime. We considered that, cumulatively,  statements in the programme were an indirect call to action to members of the Sikh community to take violent action against Lieutenant-General Brar, other members of the Indian armed forces who had taken part in Operation Bluestar (the Indian Army's controversial military operation against the Golden Temple at Amritsar in June 1984)7 or those who supported this military operation.

Ofcom decided it was appropriate and proportionate in the circumstances to impose a financial penalty of £30,000 on the Licensee in respect of the breach of Rule 3.1. In addition, Ofcom decided it should issue a direction to the Licensee to broadcast a statement of Ofcom's findings, on a date and in a form to be determined by Ofcom.

 

  Killing Daytime TV...

Ofcom finds that an episode of the Murder Files was unsuitable for broadcast in the hour before the watershed


Link Here 11th August 2013
murder files logoMurder Files: The Sketchbook Killer
Channel 5, 11 December 2012, 20:00 to 21:00

Murder Files: The Sketchbook Killer was an episode of the factual documentary strand Murder Files, which explores how the police have caught suspects in major criminal investigations.

A complainant alerted Ofcom to violent themes and imagery in this programme, which the complainant considered unsuitable to be broadcast before the 21:00 watershed when children might be watching.

This episode featured the crimes of the eponymous Sketchbook Killer, John Sweeney. The episode opened with actual footage, dating from 2001 and filmed from a police helicopter. It was described in the commentary as showing the horrific discovery of holdalls located in the Regent's Canal in London in 2001 which were found to contain ten parts of the dismembered body of Paula Fields. The programme went onto explain how a similar discovery of a dismembered body, later named as Melissa Halstead, in a Rotterdam canal some 11 years previously, was, after many years of investigation linked to the same murderer, John Sweeney. The programme explored: Sweeney's life before he met his first murder victim, Melissa Halstead, and his violent relationship with her; the subsequent violent relationships he formed with two other women, Delia Balmer and Paula Fields; and the events leading to his arrest for the murders of the two women found in the canals.

Ofcom noted that the programme included the following example:

A series of reconstructions using actors, darkly lit and in soft focus and largely consisting of a series of brief shots tightly edited together, of the violence inflicted by Sweeney on Melissa Halstead and Delia Balmer. These included, at the times indicated:

20:14: an attack by Sweeney on his first victim, Melissa Halstead, in a hotel room in Austria which had taken place prior to Melissa Halstead's murder. This reconstruction was introduced by the narration: ...it's here that Sweeney's savage nature brought him right to the brink of murder. The reconstruction which followed showed a man and woman arguing, the man pushing the woman onto the bed, a brief shot of a hammer being picked up, and the man moving his arm up and down violently, accompanied by the thumping sound effect of a hammer. The voiceover continued over the reconstruction: It's never been established what prompted this attack but it left Melissa with a fractured skull and other injuries which needed emergency surgery . This final image of the male actor wielding the hammer continued, until the British Detective Inspector, Steve Smith, who investigated Sweeney's crimes, appeared saying: he [Sweeney] was convicted of attacking her [Melissa Halstead] with a hammer. He was imprisoned in Vienna...but Melissa...petitioned the judge and asked for clemency. The visuals then returned briefly to the actor playing Sweeney using the hammer and the accompanying hammering sound effects, before this sequence concluded with a final comment from the detective

Ofcom considered Rule 1.3:

Children must ... be protected by appropriate scheduling from material that is unsuitable for them.

Ofcom Decision: Breach of Ruler 1.3

While Ofcom acknowledges that the use of reconstructions and real life police footage and photographic evidence is central to murder investigation documentaries like Murder Files, this particular episode included a number of reconstructions throughout the programme (as detailed above), some of which were repeated albeit in an edited form. In our opinion these reconstructions when assessed individually were reasonably limited, showing for example, no detail of the head wounds inflicted with the hammer on Melissa Halstead, the attack with the axe on Delia Balmer, or the dismembering of the body of Melissa. The images used in Ofcom's view implied the horrific violence perpetrated rather than explicitly depicted it.

Ofcom was of the view that the overall effect of the (albeit limited) reconstructions, accompanied by detailed commentary on Sweeney's savage acts and the menacing music, resulted in material which would have been more suitable for an adult audience. We noted how the British police footage and Dutch police photographs, anatomical drawings and photographs were combined with relatively explicit descriptions of the dismembered body parts. In Ofcom's opinion these factors, taken together, meant that this programme was unsuitable for children.

Breach of Rule 1.3

 

 update: Another Skirmish in Ofcom's War on Sexy...

Further whinges against Studio 66 babe channels


Link Here 8th August 2013  full story: Babe Channels...Ofcom have it in for free to air babe channels

studio66 logoStudio 66 TV Nights Studio 66 TV 3 (Channel 941), 5 March 2013, 00:20 to 00:30
Studio 66 TV Days Studio 66 TV 3 (Channel 941), 17 April 2013, 10:30 to 11:45
Studio 66 TV Nights Studio 66 TV 2 (Channel 938), 17 April 2013, 21:04 to 21:08

Studio 66 TV 2 and Studio 66 TV 3 channels are free to air babe channels owned and operated by the same licensee, 965 TV Ltd.

Ofcom cited examples from the above broadcasts:

Ofcom noted a female presenter wearing red shoes, a black thong, red bra and red fishnet tights. During the broadcast the presenter lay on her back with her legs open to camera and repeatedly gyrated and thrust her hips as if to mime sexual intercourse. She held this position for a prolonged period. Her underwear did not adequately cover her anal area which was clearly visible during this broadcast.

A female presenter was initially shown lying face downwards and wearing a short black crop top that was covering some of her shoulders and breasts, and a pair of cutaway leopard print knickers, exposing the cheeks of her buttocks. Ofcom noted that:

  • the presenter was shown repeatedly rocking her buttocks; and
  • at various times, the presenter adjusted her position so that her crop top did not fully cover the bottom half of her breasts

A female presenter was initially shown lying sideways facing the camera, with bare breasts except for her nipples being covered by a thin strip of black plastic tape. Another thin strip of black plastic tape had been stuck around the presenter's stomach. The presenter's only other clothing was a skimpy pair of black knickers, with what appeared to be a black G-string worn underneath. While the presenter was lying on her side:

  • she was shown occasionally: rocking her body backwards and forwards; and at times touching her breasts, apparently to check to see if the plastic tape was adequately covering her nipples; and
  • the camera occasionally zoomed in and moved down the presenter's body.

At approximately 21:06 the presenter turned to lie on her front, thrusting and rocking her buttocks up and down. In this position, it was apparent that the presenter's knickers were cut away exposing the cheeks of her buttocks

Ofcom considered 

BCAP Rule 32.3: Relevant timing restrictions must be applied to advertisements that, through their content, might harm or distress children of particular ages or that are otherwise unsuitable for them.

BCAP Rule 4.2: Advertisements must not cause serious or widespread offence against generally accepted moral, social or cultural standards.

Ofcom Decision: Breach of Rules 32.3 and 4.2

The combination of these images and actions resulted in the material being of a strong sexual nature. Ofcom considered the broadcast included images that are not permitted in adult chat broadcast advertisements that are freely available without mandatory restricted access. Ofcom found this material in breach of Rule 4.2 of the BCAP Code.

And when before the watershed or soon after the broadcasts were in breach of BCAP Code Rule 32.3.

Given previous code breaches, Ofcom is requiring the Licensee to attend a meeting to discuss its compliance procedures.

 

 update: War on Sexy...

Ofcom resumes its whinge against babe channels starting with Studio 66


Link Here 6th August 2013  full story: Babe Channels...Ofcom have it in for free to air babe channels

studio66 logoStudio 66 Days
Studio 66 TV 1 (Channel 912), 4 April 2013, 11:30 to 12:05

Studio 66 Days is a segment of free to air interactive daytime chat advertising content broadcast on the service Studio 66 TV 1 (Sky Channel 912). Viewers are invited to contact on-screen presenters via premium rate telephony services ( PRS ). All dress and behaviour should be non-sexual in tone and apparent intent.

The licence for Studio 66 TV 1 is owned and operated by 914 TV Limited.

As part of its routine monitoring, Ofcom assessed some advertising content broadcast on 4 April 2013 between 11:30 and 12:05 featuring a female presenter. The presenter was wearing a low cut, black and white spotted strapless one-piece, and shown lying on her side with her legs apart while thrusting her body backwards and forwards, and gyrating her hips. Ofcom further noted that:

  • on several occasions one of the presenter's nipples was partially exposed, due to the one-piece falling down. Furthermore, the presenter was shown repeatedly pulling the top of the one-piece up to ensure that her nipples were adequately covered;

  • from 11:42 to 11:45, the presenter switched position to lie on her back, with her legs apart, while she continued to gyrate her hips and thrusting backwards and forwards; and

  • at various times, the presenter caressed her inner thigh, breasts, and buttocks.

Ofcom considered Broadcasting Committee of Advertising Practice (BCAP) Rule 32.3, which states:

Relevant timing restrictions must be applied to advertisements that, through their content, might harm or distress children of particular ages or that are otherwise unsuitable for them.

914 TV apologised for this incident. The Licensee said that: we agree that this piece of content fell short of complying with both our own internal guidelines and Ofcom's published guidance regarding 'Daytime Chat' . The Licensee, however, made a number of representations by way of mitigation.

Ofcom Decision: Breach of rule 32.3

Ofcom noted that the female presenter was wearing clothing that did not adequately cover her body, in particular a one-piece which repeatedly slipped down to expose one of the presenter's nipples. While wearing this outfit, the presenter acted in a sexualised manner: she was shown lying on her side for prolonged periods of time, her legs apart whilst thrusting her body backwards and forwards, and gyrating her hips (albeit away from camera), so as to mimic sexual intercourse. She also caressed her breasts, inner thighs and buttocks in a sexually suggestive manner. Ofcom concluded that this material was unsuitable for children.

In view of earlier findings and subsequent guidance, Ofcom is very concerned that 914 TV has again broadcast material that has breached Rule 32.3 of the BCAP Code. Given the Code breaches recorded in this Finding, Ofcom is requiring the Licensee to attend a meeting to discuss its compliance procedures.

Breach of BCAP Rule 32.3

 

 Update: Linked to Censorship...

Ofcom fines babe channels just for advertising links to porn websites (porn chatlines are fine)


Link Here 3rd August 2013  full story: Babe Channels...Ofcom have it in for free to air babe channels

Essex Babes screen shotSatellite Entertainment Limited (SEL) runs services Northern Birds (Channel 935), Essex Babes (Channel 936), Sportxxx Girls (Channel 940), and Livexxx Babes (Channel 942).

Ofcom has fined SEL £40,000 citing Rule 30.3:

Advertisements for products coming within the recognised character of pornography are permitted behind mandatory restricted access on adult entertainment channels only

In Ofcom's finding, published on 4 March 2013 in Broadcast Bulletin issue 2253, Ofcom found that SEL was in breach of BCAP Code Rule 30.3 for the period 24 September 2012 to 8 February 2013 because throughout this period each of the SEL Licensed Services carried continued and repeated broadcast of promotional references to the bluebird.tv website, which at the time of the Finding contained material within the recognised character of pornography.

Ofcom noted that the broadcast of an advertisement, on channels without mandatory restricted access, for a website containing pornographic material is a serious breach of the BCAP Code. Ofcom was particularly concerned that the Licensee in these instances broadcast the advertisement for extended periods both during daytime and immediately after the watershed when children were available to view (some unaccompanied). Ofcom therefore put the Licensee on notice that it would consider the breaches for the imposition of a statutory sanction.

Ofcom observed that the Bluebird Films home page contained explicit pornographic material (equivalent to BBFC R18-rated content). Registration and age verification by means of credit card ownership was only required if the user wished to become a member of a paid-for content service.

Ofcom decided that it is appropriate and proportionate in the circumstances to impose a financial penalty of £40,000 on the Licensee in respect of the breaches of Rule 30.3.

 

 Comment: ASA Open Your World...

Pedantic advert censor whinges at Heineken advert featuring a bottle of beer in Wembley


Link Here 20th July 2013

heineken wembley video A TV ad for Heineken beer featured a man on a remote island who received tickets for the Champions League Final at Wembley. The man grabbed two bottles of Heineken and put them in his bag before making his way off the island and beginning his journey back to London in time for the match. In one of the following scenes, he was seen at border control with two policemen. One removed the bottles of Heineken from his bag and placed them on the table. The man took a plum from a fruit bowl on the table and dribbled it with his fingers along the table before scoring a goal between the two Heineken bottles. The policemen cheered and stamped the man's passport. In another scene, he was seen driving through the streets of Rio past a group of young men playing football. Another scene showed the man on a plane followed by a visual of a map showing the plane leave Rio and arrive in London. The final scene showed the man arriving at Wembley Stadium in a Chinook helicopter, running into the stadium past a poster on the wall which stated UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE and taking his seat next to a woman. After embracing, they were seen clinking the two bottles of Heineken together in a celebratory fashion. On-screen text stated Heineken open your world .

Seventeen viewers complained about the ad:

  1. fifteen viewers challenged whether the ad was irresponsible, because it condoned or encouraged the consumption of alcohol in a football stadium within sight of the pitch, which was an illegal activity; and

  2. six viewers challenged whether the ad was irresponsible, because it condoned or encouraged people to take glass bottles into a football stadium, which was not permitted.

ASA Assessment: Complaints upheld

1. & 2. Upheld

The ASA understood that it was illegal in the UK to consume alcohol in a football stadium within sight of the pitch and that fans were not permitted to take glass bottles into a football stadium. We noted that the final scene of the ad showed the main character arriving at his seat in the ground, taking out two bottles of Heineken and clinking them in celebration with his female companion. We acknowledged that neither the main character nor his female companion was shown drinking the beer, but we considered that the implication was that they were going to consume the beer during the football match.

We noted that some of the scenes were fantastical in nature; for example, after receiving the tickets, the main character was seen jumping into the sea fully-clothed and swimming off the island, sliding down a waterfall in the jungle and joking with the border officials. However, we considered it was clear throughout that his journey was to the Champions League Final at Wembley, and we noted that it was an actual event at a real stadium. For example, we noted that the writing on his ticket seen early in the ad stated clearly FINAL WEMBLEY 2013 and contained branding for the Champions League, the visual of the map made clear his destination was London, the stadium was recognisable as being Wembley and on the way into the stadium he passed a poster which stated UEFA Champions League . We considered therefore that the ad was not obviously fantastical throughout since it depicted a real event at a well-known and recognisable stadium.

We noted that the main character did not encourage other spectators to take glass bottles into the stadium or drink beer within sight of the pitch. However, we considered that the ad could give the impression to viewers that such behaviour, which was either illegal (in the case of consuming alcohol) or not permitted (in the case of bringing glass bottles into the stadium), was acceptable when that was not the case, and there was a risk that viewers would attempt to copy that behaviour. We therefore concluded that the ad was socially irresponsible, because it condoned or encouraged behaviour that was either illegal or not permitted.

The ad breached BCAP Code rules 1.2 (Social responsibility), 1.3 (Legality) and 4.9 (Harm and offence).

Comment: Taking a pop at Heineken

20th July 2013. Thanks to Alan

letter writingAs a member of CAMRA, I'm delighted that someone has complained about Heineken advertising. Passing off this weak, pee-coloured liquid as beer must breach some standard....

Whoops! Nothing to do with the pseodo-continental lagerade, it's all to do with someone drinking within sight of a football pitch.

The other day, you cited Amanda Palmer's splendid open letter to the Daily Mail, in which she helpfully advised the rag: There's a thing called a search engine; use it! The same advice should be directed at the absurd quango, the ASA. A quick Google search shows that football clubs are trying to get the prohibition revoked. It also reveals a nasty pong of snobbery about the legislation. It only applies to Association Football matches (in certain leagues and competitions). At multi-purpose stadiums (e.g. Wembley; Madejski Stadium, Reading) the same fan could sit in the same seat at a soccer match dying of thirst and at a rugby match getting pissed as a newt. Furthermore, it does NOT apply to corporate hospitality boxes. So, a season ticket holder at Walsall's thrillling match with Peterborough can't have a drink, but the suit from Megacorp PLC, necking champagne in a box at Old Trafford and occasionally glancing towards the field of play, can happily get legless.

Just how po-faced do you have to be to work for the ASA?

 

 Update: Group Hug for ASA...

Advert censor dismisses whinges about Irn Bru advert featuring a very mammary mum


Link Here 10th July 2013

irn bru bra video Ads promoted the soft drink IRN-BRU.

a. A TV ad featured a mother cleaning the kitchen as her son and two friends walked in. They greeted each other and the son looked shocked. The mum looked at her cleavage and said New push up bra. Amazing eh? The son's friends stared at her breasts as her son looked on with a shocked expression. The son then took a loud sip of IRN-BRU, smiled and said, Looking good mum . His friends continued to watch her as she leaned forward to clean the table. The son appeared disconcerted, then took another sip and smiled at his mum. The mother then embraced her son against her chest. He looked uncomfortable, then drank more IRN-BRU and then smiled. The mother asked Group hug? and the friends jumped from their chairs enthusiastically, pushing each other. The final scene showed the drink in front of two balloons with text stating IRN-BRU and GETS YOU THROUGH.

b. The same ad appeared on the IRN-BRU YouTube channel, the AOL website before a news bulletin and on a Video on Demand (VOD) service (STV).

176 complaints were received. Most complaints related to ad (a) and four related to ad (b).

  1. Most complainants challenged whether the ads were offensive and irresponsible, because they considered that the scenario between the mother and young men was sexual and inappropriate.

  2. Some complainants challenged whether the ads were sexist and demeaning to women.

  3. Some viewers challenged whether ad (a) was inappropriately scheduled at a time when children could have been viewing.

ASA Assessment: Complaints not upheld

Investigated ad (a) under BCAP Code rules 1.2  & 1.3 (Responsible advertising), 4.1 and 4.2 (Harm and offence).

1. Not upheld

The ASA noted that the characters in the ads were all adults who were over the age of consent. We considered that the action in the ads did not rely on the mum actively or overtly flirting with her son's friends in a manner designed to actively sexually attract them or form a sexual relationship with them, but was focused on the son's embarrassment that his friends were showing an attraction to his mother, whilst she behaved as if she was unaware of the effect her manner of dress and actions were having on those around her. Although we acknowledged that some behaviour, such as the mum's offer of a group hug , might suggest that she was conscious of the effect her manner of dress was having on the group, we considered that the purpose of her actions was to form the basis of the humour in the ads, which was driven by the surreal notion that the son's embarrassment could be countered by drinking IRN-BRU. We therefore considered that most viewers would interpret the situation as surreal and using tongue in cheek humour, rather than as depicting realistic and sexually inappropriate behaviour on the part of the mum.

Although we noted that some complainants had interpreted the action in the ads as portraying an inappropriate relationship between the mum and the son's friends, we did not consider that their interaction was a portrayal of irresponsible behaviour. Therefore, although we acknowledged that some viewers had found the ads' humour distasteful, we did not consider that the ads portrayed irresponsible behaviour, nor that they were likely to cause serious or widespread offence. We therefore concluded that the ads were not in breach of the Code.

2. Not upheld

We noted that the ads featured a woman with large breasts who was wearing a low cut top and push-up bra and involved her son's friends displaying an attraction to her appearance. We also noted that the basis of the humour and action drew particular attention to her appearance and her breasts. However, we considered that the action relied on the mum being confident and attractive, but not consciously or overtly behaving in a sexualised or flirtatious way. We also considered that the focus of the ads was the son's embarrassment at the effect his mum's appearance was having on his friends. The humour was based on the surreal notion of using IRN-BRU to counter that embarrassment. Therefore, and particularly in the context of ads intended to portray a surreal and light-hearted comedic approach, we did not consider that the action or depiction of the female protagonist was sexist or demeaning and concluded that the ads were not in breach of the Code.

3. Not upheld

We noted that ad (a) was subject to an ex kids restriction which prevented the ads from being broadcast in or around programmes directed at or likely to appeal particularly to children. Although we considered that younger children would be unlikely to understand the basis of the humour and innuendo used in the ad, we did not consider that the content was overtly sexualised or was inappropriate to be seen by children, particularly when watching with adults. We therefore concluded that the ad was unlikely to cause serious or widespread offence.

 

 Comment: Ofcom fines muslim channel 105K for inciting murder...

A little less than Playboy was fined for slightly too sexy babe channels


Link Here 7th July 2013  full story: Ofcom on Religion...ofcom keep religious extremism in check

DM Digital logoOfcom has fined the muslim channel DM Digital £105,000 for 2 transgressions of Ofcom's programme code.

DM Digital is a television channel primarily aimed at an Asian audience in the UK, which features broadcasts in a number of languages including English, Punjabi, Urdu, Sindhi, Kashmiri and Hindi. The service is also received in the Middle East and parts of Asia. The licence for this channel is held by DM Digital Television Limited.

The first fine was £85,000 over the programme Rehmatul Lil Alameen broadcast on 9th October 2011 at 18:30.

The programme was in Urdu and was approximately one hour in duration, featured a presenter who introduced an Islamic Pir (a religious 'scholar') who delivered a live televised lecture about points of Islamic theology with reference to the shooting dead in early 2011 of the Punjab governor Salmaan Taseer by his bodyguard Malik Mumtaz Qadri. Salmaan Taseer had been a vocal critic of Pakistan's blasphemy law.

Ofcom noted in particular the following remarks from Abdul Qadir Jilani's lecture:

Under the guidance from Islamic texts it is evident that if a Muslim apostatises, then it is not right to wait for the authorised courts; anyone may kill him . An apostate deserves to be killed and any man may kill him. For this, you do not need to contact the authorised courts. Because the prophet did not question Omar's act.

...if someone denies the existence of God, you may have a defensive war with them but if someone insults the Prophet, you should not be defensive but you should aggressively attack them. You should go to their homes and fight them there .

The man who has killed [Salmaan Taseer] has done an act of great love and proved his loyalty. It was his duty to do so. Some people say that he was supposed to guard [Salmaan Taseer] but a man's first duty is to protect his father and Abu Ubaydah killed his own father because the latter denied the apostolate of Prophet Mohammed….When Abu Ubaydah killed his father, Allah praised him because he had killed in the love of the Prophet Muhammed. Such an act does not fall into the category of terrorism .

I hail those who made this law [i.e. Pakistan's blasphemy law] which states that one who insults the Prophet deserves to be killed – such a person should be eliminated .

The programme was found to have breeched Rule 3.1: Material likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime or to lead to disorder must not be included in television or radio services .

Having regard to the serious nature of the Code breach, the Licensee's representations and the Ofcom Penalty Guidelines, Ofcom decided it was appropriate and proportionate in the circumstances to impose a financial penalty of £85,000 on the Licensee in respect of the breach of Rule 3.1.

The second transgression was by  the programme POAF Conference on DM Digital, 25th November 2011 at 19:00 and 4th December 2011 at 21:00. Ofcom found this programme fsimilarly in breach of their rules and imposed a financial penalty of £20,000

Comment: So why have there been no criminal charges?

A question reflecting other comments to Melon Farmers too.

7th July 2013.  See  article from  secularism.org.uk

National Secular Society logo Terry Sanderson, President of the National Secular Society, said:

Inciting murder is against the law. Why aren't the police knocking on Mr Jilani's door? Why is he not under arrest? Surely he cannot be allowed to get away with such blatant call to kill innocent people? Other people have been sent to prison for far less than this.

 

  Bowing Out...

TV censor Colette Bowe quits as chairman of Ofcom


Link Here 5th July 2013

Ofcom logoOfcom Chairman Colette Bowe has announced that she will step down from the Board in March 2014, when her terms ends.

Colette was appointed as Ofcom Chairman in March 2009 for a five-year period. Prior to this, Colette was the first Chairman of Ofcom's Consumer Panel and joined the main Board in 2008. She said:

I am extremely proud of the fact that Ofcom has served citizens and consumers, and achieved so much while also reducing its cost base. It has been a privilege to chair such a strong board which is absolutely focused on delivering on Ofcom's priorities.

She neglected to point out that she was a bit selective in the citizens and consumers who were served by Ofcom. Ofcom has done absolutely nothing to serve citizens and consumers that enjoy adult entertainment.

 

  Cowboy Censors...

Strong language bleeped out, asterisked in the subtitles but still not suitable for 8pm TV


Link Here 4th July 2013

cowboy buildersCowboy Builders Channel 5,
26 March 2013, 19:00

Cowboy Builders is a documentary series in which presenters Dominic Littlewood and Melinda Messenger pursue rogue operators in the domestic building trade. The programme often features altercations between the presenters and the cowboy builders .

Ofcom was alerted by a complainant to the broadcast of a heated telephone conversation between Dominic Littlewood and the representative of a building company in this particular episode. The conversation lasted 70 seconds and was broadcast at around 19:50. It was accompanied by subtitles because of the poor sound quality. The subtitles contained nine instances in total of f*** or f****** to reflect fully bleeped uses of the word fuck or a derivative, and one c*** to reflect one fully bleeped instance of the word cunt . For example:

Dominic: You've got all your facts wrong .

Builder: I haven't got the facts wrong you f****** stupid c*** .

The complainant believed that although bleeped, the builder's language was made clear by the accompanying subtitles.

Ofcom considered Rule 1.3 of the Code, which states:

Children must be protected by appropriate scheduling from material that is unsuitable for them .

Ofcom Decision: Breach of Rule 1.3

Ofcom noted that this 70 second scene contained nine bleeped uses of the word fuck or a derivative and one bleeped use of the word cunt . Although not audible, the accompanying subtitles f****** , f*** and c*** , left viewers in no doubt of what the builder had actually said.

 In Ofcom's view, the combination of the repeated bleeped use of these offensive words in a relatively short space of time, and the subtitles which made clear exactly what most offensive language the builder was using, made the material unsuitable for children.

Ofcom did not consider the programme was appropriately scheduled, and was in breach of Rule 1.3

Ofcom acknowledged Channel 5's explanation of how the incident occurred and its acknowledgement that the material was not suitable for broadcast at this time.

Breach of Rule 1.3

 

 Update: Ofcom Doesn't Arse About...

The TV censor dismisses whinges about Rowan Atkinson's Archbishop sketch without a detailed investigation


Link Here 2nd July 2013  full story: Rowan Atkinson...Offending the easily offended

archbishop rowan atkinson video TV censors at Ofcom have cleared the BBC for airing a Comic Relief sketch in which Rowan Atkinson parodied the Archbishop of Canterbury. The skit attracted almost 500 complaints to regulator Ofcom, as well as more than 2,200 to the BBC itself.

In the three minute pre-watershed broadcast, Rowan Atkinson dressed up as a generic Archbishop mentioned shagging your neighbour , arsing about , and that prayer doesn't work .

Ofcom clearly dismissed the whinges out of hand and didn't pursue a detailed investigation.

 

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