Bafta, the BBC and Channel 4 have al adopted diversity requirements for film/TV production. But will the rules have any censorship impact?
||31st December 2016 |
article from independent.co.uk
The British Academy of Film and Television Arts (Bafta) has adopted new diversity rules for films qualifying for consideration for awards.
In order to compete for the awards, productions will, from 2019, have to demonstrate that they have made effort
to boost diversity in two of the four following areas:
- On screen representation, themes and narratives
- Project leadership and creative practitioners
- Industry access and opportunities
- Opportunities for diversity in audience development
Under-represented groups in the film industry include people from minority ethnic backgrounds, disabled people, women and LGBT. It also includes people from lower socio-economic groups.
In certain categories productions based or set outside London can also count towards achieving the standards.
Film4 and BBC films have already agreed to adopt the standards.
Offsite Comment: The Sky is Falling
31st December 2016 See article from spiked-online.com by
A number of articles about BAFTA's new rules single out Skyfall, the 2012 James Bond film, as an example of a previous winner that wouldn't be nominated under the new guidelines.
Offsite Video Comment: Diversity: Do as we tell you - and be diverse
31st December 2016 See video from YouTube by the Britisher
The Britisher wonders whether the rules will restrict the BBC from producing programmes in
settings where a diverse cast would be a distraction, think Jane Austen or King Arthu.r
Ofcom fines Noor TV 75,000 for a religious parable about killing jews
|26th December 2016 |
See article [pdf] from ofcom.org.uk
Noor TV is a digital satellite television channel broadcasting religious and other programming in Urdu from an Islamic perspective to audiences in the UK and internationally.
On 17 November 2015, the Licensee broadcast the second instalment of a
series of four programmes which had been recorded at the Urs Nehrian festival in Pakistan that had taken place in June 2015. The programme consisted of 15 religious scholars and preachers addressing an assembled congregation with short sermons, homilies
and poetic verses.
One of the speakers, Allama Mufti Muhammad Saeed Sialvi Sahib (“Allama Sialvi”), recounted a parable in which he stated that the Prophet Muhammed had given a general command to kill all Jewish people. He stated that upon hearing
this command one Muslim follower had immediately killed a Jewish trader with whom he had long standing business relations. Allama Sialvi held this to be an example of the devotion and obedience of a disciple to the Prophet Muhammed and on several
occasions appeared to condone the killing of a Jewish trader.
We noted that Allama Sialvi held the titles “Mufti” and “Allama”, denoting that he was a figure of religious authority within the Muslim community, and therefore someone whose views
would carry some weight within the Muslim community.
We considered that Allama Sialvi's clear statement that religious obedience within the Islamic faith could be demonstrated through murder of Jewish people had the potential to be interpreted as
spreading anti-Semitism, i.e. his comments could amount to a form of hate speech . In this context we were mindful of the Council of Europe's definition of' hate speech', as follows: all forms of expression which spread, incite, promote or
justify racial hatred, xenophobia, anti-Semitism or other forms of hatred based on intolerance, including: intolerance expressed by aggressive nationalism and ethnocentrism, discrimination and hostility against minorities, migrants and people of
We considered that Allama Sialvi's speech, particularly due to his standing and authority within the Muslim community, involved clear potential to cause significant offence as it held up in unequivocal terms the killing of a
Jewish person as an example of devotion and obedience within the context of the Islamic faith. We also considered that the content had the potential to cause harm by portraying the murder of Jewish people in highly positive terms and promoting a highly
negative anti-Semitic attitude towards Jewish people.
Ofcom's Decision is that an appropriate and proportionate sanction would be a financial penalty of £75,000. In addition, Ofcom considers that the Licensee should broadcast a statement of
Ofcom's findings in this case, on a date and in a form to be determined by Ofcom.
Ofcom considers sanctions for Afghanistan news channel that aired German train terrorist's threatening hate speech without challenge or censure
|20th December 2016 |
Complaints Bulletin [pdf] from ofcom.org.uk
Ariana International, 20 July 2016, 12:00I
Ariana International is a general entertainment channel originating from Afghanistan, and broadcast by satellite in the UK.
Ofcom noted a news item
relating to Muhammad Riyad, a 17-year old, who was described as said to be an Afghan . He had injured five people when he attacked a train, armed with a knife and axe, in Wuerzburg, Germany in July 2016.
A video was then
broadcast which showed Muhammad Riyad talking straight to camera and at times brandishing a knife. The video lasted approximately two minutes and 15 seconds, and Muhammad Riyad said the following:
from Islamic State will reach you everywhere. Inshallah you will be slaughtered in your homes. Inshallah they will enter your homes, enter your land, and on the streets. Inshallah you will not be safe in your homes, your villages, your towns and
inshallah, and in every street in every airport inshallah. The Islamic State has enough strength to get you everywhere, even in your parliament [vigorously waving knife at camera]. I am living here amongst you and inshallah I have made a plan to deal
with you here in your homes inshallah. I tell you, that I will slaughter you in your homes. I promise you that I will make you forget about France...
The news show made no further comments after the speech and moved
on to the next item
Ofcom considered the following rules:
Rule 2.3: “In applying generally accepted standards broadcasters must ensure that material which may cause offence is justified by the context...”.
Rule 3.1: “Material likely to encourage or to incite
the commission of crime or to lead to disorder must not be included in television or radio services”.
Rule 3.2: “Material which contains hate speech14 must not be included in television and radio programmes except where it is
justified by the context”.
Ofcom Decision: Breach of rules 2.3, 3.1, 3.2
Ofcom considered the audience would have interpreted Muhammad Riyad's various comments as promoting and justifying hatred and violence towards the persons who did
not conform to his definition of Islam. In Ofcom's view, this was a clear example of hate speech, as defined by the Code.
Given the very strong nature of the material in this case, we considered that, under the Code, there would
need to be extremely clear and strong context provided to justify the broadcast of the video featuring Muhammad Riyad. Our Decision was that that there was clearly insufficient context to justify the inclusion of hate speech in this broadcast, and Rule
3.2 was therefore breached.
Breaches of Section Three of the Code, in particular, are very serious because they involve the potential for serious harm. Ofcom considered all of the breaches in this case to be very serious.
Due to the highly challenging and potentially harmful nature of the content broadcast, we are putting the Licensee on notice that we will consider these very serious breaches for the imposition of a statutory sanction.
Breaches of Rules 2.3, 3.1 and 3.2
Viewers takes on ITV about its censorship of Lord of the Rings
|18th December 2016 |
Thanks to Andy
ITV broadcast Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring on Saturday evening running from 4:15pm until 7:30pm (including about 24 minutes of advertising).
With no respect for a cinematic classic, viewers took to twitter to report
@jet186: Why does ITV edit the shit out of movies #LOTR0.
@ClaireElleLee: ITV are currently showing LOTR and they cut out Boromir's death scene. My tears did not fall, thank you
@pdm_armour: They are cutting out all the good bits of #lordoftherings on #itv ahhh
@Noah_x3: Bloody ITV cutting out parts of Lord of the Ring
Ofcom publishes further details about how TV censorship of the BBC will work
|10th December 2016 |
See press release from
Ofcom has set out how it will take on regulation of the BBC from next April.
This will see the biggest reform of the governance and regulation of the BBC since it was founded.
The Government has
decided that a new BBC unitary board will govern and run the BBC, and ultimately be responsible for editorial and management decisions.
Ofcom will become the new external regulator of the BBC. Our job will be to hold the BBC to
We have published a statement explaining how we will prepare to undertake our new regulatory duties
from the planned effective date, 3 April 2017.
Ofcom's approach to regulating the BBC
As the new external regulator, Ofcom will bring its experience of regulating the wider broadcast and
communications sector at a time of increasing convergence.
Ofcom already has roles across many of the BBC's services, from content standards to competition. These new responsibilities broaden the scope of Ofcom's existing work.
Regulation of the BBC will sit within Ofcom's existing teams and will focus on three core areas as laid out in the Charter: content standards; protecting fair and effective competition; and reviewing the BBC's performance.
In order to carry out our new duties effectively and efficiently, and to provide clarity to audiences and the wider sector, we will :
Proceed from our principal duty -- as with all our work, our principal objective is to further the interests of citizens and consumers;
Recognise that the BBC is the cornerstone of public
service broadcasting in the UK -- the BBC has a special status, but we won't give it special treatment;
Recognise that responsibility for governance lies with the new BBC Board -- it is for the BBC Board, rather
than Ofcom, to determine how to deliver the mission and purposes defined in the Charter. The Board must set the BBC's editorial guidelines. We will hold the BBC to account;
Make good use of our depth of knowledge and
experience -- we have experience of regulating the broadcasting sector, as well as existing roles in relation to the BBC in the key areas of content standards, competition and performance;
Consult widely -- ensure
the views of citizens, consumers and stakeholders feed into our work; and
Be clear about our expectations and requirements of the BBC -- provide clarity on how we will address issues if things go wrong, to provide
certainty to the BBC, its audiences and the wider sector.
In the coming months, Ofcom will develop an 'Operating Framework' for the BBC. This will ultimately contain all of the elements of our regulation across the BBC's content standards,
competition and performance.
The Operating Framework will set out the regulatory tools that Ofcom will use to hold the BBC to account. There will be separate consultations on the finer details of our role over the coming, which
fall into the following broad categories:
1. Content standards
Viewers and listeners should be able to trust what they see and hear. They should know that steps have been taken to avoid unjustified
offence, and that protection from harmful content is in place. Ofcom will set content standards for the BBC so that its viewers and listeners are adequately protected.
The previous Charter and Agreement gave Ofcom shared
regulatory oversight of some of the BBC's content standards with the BBC Trust, which will close when Ofcom takes on its new role. The new arrangement hands Ofcom regulatory responsibility for content standards on BBC broadcasting and on-demand programme
services including, for the first time, for the accuracy and impartiality of BBC news and current affairs programmes. Ofcom will be updating the rules in its Broadcasting Code to fulfil these new responsibilities.
Ofcom will also
create procedures for handling complaints about BBC content standards, and for conducting our investigations and sanctions.
Additionally, we will publish procedures explaining how audiences will be able to obtain an independent
opinion from Ofcom on whether the BBC has observed relevant editorial guidelines for online material in its UK Public Services.
2. Protecting fair and effective competition
Fair and effective
competition is good for viewers and listeners. It can increase choice and stimulate investment and innovation -- ensuring the provision of a wide range of high-quality and varied programmes, and different ways to access them.
Ofcom will assess the effect of the BBC's activities on audiences and the UK media sector, and set rules as to how the BBC should behave.
We will also impose requirements on the BBC to avoid the relationship between its public-service activities and commercial subsidiaries distorting the market, or creating an unfair competitive advantage for the BBC's subsidiaries.
3. Performance -- holding the BBC to account
Ofcom is currently developing a set of tools to regulate the BBC's performance. This will include an Operating Licence for the BBC's UK public services
and may include any performance measures we consider appropriate, further to those set by the BBC, we will consult on this over the course of next year.
As explained in the Charter, we will have a particular focus on assessing the
distinctiveness of the BBC's output. We will also hold the BBC to account in relation to its obligations to serve audiences in all four of the UK's nations and for diversity.
As part of the approach to performance, we expect to
carry out both ad hoc and periodic reviews of the BBC's services.
6th December 2016 |
With a new Star Trek TV series incoming, Den of Geek revisits the show's long history of censorship at the BBC...
article from denofgeek.com
Ofcom censors Fox News for political bias
See Complaints bulletin [pdf] from ofcom.org.uk
Ofcom mustn’t shield us from Hannity we need to see the full horror from theguardian.com
Fox News, 2, 5 and 6 August 2016, 03:00
Fox News is a news channel originating in the USA, broadcast on the digital satellite platform and licensed by Ofcom in the UK.
Hannity is a live current
affairs programme, presented by Sean Hannity, that discusses and analyses political and news stories.
During routine monitoring, Ofcom identified three one hour programmes which were broadcast in the US at 22:00 Eastern Standard
Time and simultaneously in the UK at 03:00. The programmes included a number of statements relating to the 2016 US Presidential election. Our concern in this case was whether these three programmes were duly impartial in their coverage of the US
Presidential election campaign.
Ofcom then cited pages of examples of pro Trump bias eg the following exchange in an interview with Trump:
Khizr Khan, a US citizen of Pakistani origin received widespread media
attention for criticising Donald Trump at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.
Hannity : When you talk about refugees, illegal immigration, you're not talking about people like the Khans. For example, James Clapper, our
National Director of Intelligence, our CIA Director, or FBI Director, Assistant FBI Director, our Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, and even General John Allen, Obama's special envoy to defeat ISIS: They have all warned us that the
refugees that Obama's taking in -- and Hillary wants a 550% increase -- that refugee population will be infiltrated. Are you clear you are not talking about the Khans, you're talking about what these people are saying?
: No, I'm not talking about the Khans, I'm not talking about a lot of people. I'm talking about people coming over here from Syria that aren't properly vetted, their immigration, nobody knows if they're ISIS, they don't know who they are. They're
being put all over the country. Hillary wants a 550% increase over what Obama's bringing in. Obama's bringing them in by the thousands, by the thousands, and she wants to bring them in 550% more. I think it's insane. Now I also think that what we should
do is build safe zones over in Syria, have the Gulf states pay for it. They've got plenty of money. They're not doing their job right nowâ?¦We have to get back to rebuilding our country, rebuild our infrastructure, create jobs, take jobs away from Mexico
and all these countries that are taking our jobs.
Ofcom considered Rule 6.1:
The rules in Section Five, in particular the rules relating to matters of major political or industrial
controversy and major matters relating to current public policy, apply to the coverage of elections and referendums.
And the section 5 rules considered were:
Rule 5.11: In addition
to the rules above, due impartiality must be preserved on matters of major political and industrial controversy and major matters relating to current public policy by the person providing a service (listed above) in each programme or in clearly linked
and timely programmes.
Rule 5.12: In dealing with matters of major political and industrial controversy and major matters relating to current public policy an appropriately wide range of significant views must be included and
given due weight in each programme or in clearly linked and timely programmes. Views and facts must not be misrepresented.
Ofcom then spent several more pages analysing the bleedin' obvious, that Hannity (and Fox News in general) were
heavily biased in favour of Trump. Ofcom concluded:
In these programmes, we considered that there were a large number of positive viewpoints expressed about Mr Trump and his campaign, coupled with the fact that Hillary Clinton and
her candidacy were strongly criticised. As already mentioned above, this meant that there was an overwhelmingly one-sided view on a matter of major political controversy and major matter relating to current public policy, i.e. the policies and actions of
the two principal candidates contesting the 2016 US Presidential Election.
For the reasons set out above, our Decision was that this material had clearly breached Rule 6.1 (and Rules 5.11 and 5.12).
Ofcom walk on PC eggshells to humour complainants about a Coronation Street pun on Alex Hailey's Roots
|23rd November 2016 |
See article [pdf] from ofcom.org.uk
Coronation Street ITV,
29 August 2016, 19:30
Coronation Street is a long-running and well-established soap opera on ITV.
Ofcom received 473 complaints about a comment by the character Eva Price
during a scene in the local hair salon. Looking at her dyed hair, she said:
Yeah, look [pointing at her hair] I've got more roots than Kunte Kinte. No idea who that is by the way, it's summat my mum used to say.
Kunte Kinte is the lead character in Alex Haley's 1976 novel Roots: The Saga of an American Family which was later adapted into a popular television series called Roots. The story chronicles the life of an 18th
century African man who was captured and sold into slavery in the United States.
The complainants considered the play on the word roots was unacceptable as the basis for a joke given the subject matter of the Alex Haley
story, and therefore felt that the comment was racially offensive.
Ofcom considered Rule 2.3 of the Code:
In applying generally accepted standards broadcasters must ensure that material which
may cause offence is justified by the contextâ?¦ Such material may include, but is not limited to... discriminatory treatment or language (for example on the grounds of...race...). Appropriate information should also be broadcast where it would assist in
avoiding or minimising offence.
Ofcom Decision: Not in breach
Ofcom first considered whether the comment in this particular scene had the potential to cause offence. Slavery and ethnicity are
subjects that broadcasters should approach with due caution, especially when they are referred to in a light-hearted context which could result in sensitivities being heightened. In Ofcom's view, viewers who were aware of the Alex Haley story or the
Roots series would have been likely to associate Eva's reference to Kunte Kinte with the story, and with slavery. In the light-hearted context in which the remark was made, we considered that this reference to slavery had the potential to offend viewers.
Ofcom went on to consider if the broadcast of the material was justified by the context.
Eva Price's comment was a play on the word roots , which referred to both the colour of her hair at its roots
and, through the reference to Kunte Kinte, the title of the 1970s television series. Although the series is well known for depicting the African slave trade in 18th century America, we noted that Eva's comment did not mention this at all. She only
referred to the title of the television series and name of its lead character. We took into account, in particular, that at no point was language broadcast which referred directly to ethnicity or slavery, or in Ofcom's view, was derogatory or
Ofcom also took into account Eva's subsequent remark that she did not understand who Kunte Kinte was, and that she was repeating the phrase because it was something her mother used to say. This reflected the
foolishness, and lack of sensitivity and cultural awareness, of her character. For her to speak in this thoughtless fashion without understanding what she was referring to, or that it might cause offence, was likely to have been consistent with the
audience's expectations of her character.
We acknowledged that relatively high number of viewers complained to Ofcom, and that some viewers clearly felt very strongly about the remarks in this case. We noted the measures taken by
ITV to mitigate the potential offence to these viewers by: writing to all complainants who contacted it directly, making a public statement to the press apologising if the remark had caused any unintended offence, and removing the phrase from subsequent
broadcasts of the episode.
Having taking into account all the above factors, we were of the view that this potentially offensive material was justified by the context. Therefore, the material was not in breach of Rule 2.3 of the
...Ofcom has added its voice to the lynch mob of censors whingeing at a joke about the Queen
||22nd November 2016 |
Thanks to Nick
See Complaints Bulletin [pdf] from ofcom.org.uk
Don't Make Me Laugh
BBC Radio 4, 21 April 2016, 18:30
Don't Make Me Laugh is a comedy show, hosted by David Baddiel. A panel of comedians taking part in the programme are asked to talk about why a subject is not funny, without
making the audience laugh. If the audience does laugh, the subject passes to the next contestant.
Ofcom received 12 complaints about the episode broadcast on 21 April 2016 which featured a discussion about the Queen and sex.
Complainants considered that references to the Queen in the programme were offensive and inappropriate. A number of complaints referred to the fact that the programme was broadcast on the Queen's 90th birthday.
The panel of
comedians on this programme were Russell Kane, Sara Pascoe, Omid Djalili, and Adam Hess.
Round two of the show was introduced by David Baddiel:
In an effort to demonstrate just how grown up
and sophisticated we've become, I would like you Russell Kane to tell us why there is nothing funny about the fact that Announcer: the Queen must have had sex at least four times [laughter from the studio audience].
The panel of comedians responded by making a number of personal comments about Prince Philip and the Queen. For example, Russell Kane said the following:
Four times we have to think of
republicanism as we imagine four children emerging from Her Majesty's vulva and for me [audience laughter].
Ofcom considered its Rule 2.3:
In applying generally accepted
standards broadcasters must ensure that material which may cause offence is justified by the context.
Ofcom Decision: Breach of rule 2.3
Throughout this segment of the programme, the panel
made a number of comments about the Queen in an effort to explain why the subject of that round of the programme was not funny. We considered that comments about the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were made in a mocking way, which would have been
perceived by many listeners as humiliating and intrusive. Ofcom took into account that the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are public figures with wide exposure in the media. Nonetheless, we considered that the mocking and demeaning tone of these
comments made them capable of causing offence. The potential for offence was increased by the fact that these remarks were broadcast on the Queen's 90th birthday.
Ofcom took into account that audiences expect some comedy
programming to be challenging and to push at boundaries. However, the reaction of the audience to comedy material is subjective and can vary widely. In this case, the jokes about the Queen were made in a way that was mocking and demeaning. The fact that
these jokes were made on her 90th birthday, in Ofcom's view, would have considerably increased the level of offence for many listeners. Furthermore, the level of potential offence was also increased to some extent by the fact this programme was
pre-recorded, so that the BBC's editorial decision to broadcast this content on this day was likely to have been perceived by listeners as deliberate and not the result of for example an inadvertent misjudgement made during a live programme.
In Ofcom's view, it is likely that Radio 4 listeners would not have expected comedic content about the Queen of this strength and directness to be included in a Radio 4 comedy programme broadcast in the early evening on her 90th
We considered also that, for all these reasons, any listeners who had come across this content unawares may well have been surprised and disconcerted to hear it broadcast on Radio 4 at this time, on the Queen's 90th
The broadcast of this potentially offensive material was not justified by the context, and there was a breach of Rule 2.3 of the Code.
16th November 2016. The BBC to broadcast newly discovered works by Peter Cook previously thought lost through censorship
|16th November 2016 |
14th November 2016. Listen to the programme from bbc.co.uk
press release from bbc.co.uk
The Undiscovered Peter Cook
16th November 2016. BBC 4 10pm
Following the death of Britain's greatest satirist in 1995, Peter Cook's widow Lin locked the door of his Hampstead house, and refused all access to the media.
Until this year, when she invited her friend Victor Lewis-Smith and a BBC crew inside, to make a documentary about the man she knew and loved, with unprecedented access to Peter's private recordings, diaries, letters, photographs, and much more.
The result is a fascinating and unique hour of television, that includes Peter performing hitherto unknown comedy sketches, rediscovered interviews, and long-lost footage of Peter performing with his comedy partner Dudley Moore, as
well as with Peter Sellers and David Attenborough. There are multiple extracts from Peter's home videos, as well as Lin's first televised interview. A major find is The Dead Sea Tapes , an LP recorded by Peter and Dudley in 1963, but never
released (due to concerns about blasphemy laws), and long thought lost. Also included are rediscovered classic sketches from Not Only But Also , reconstructed in the edit suite after mute film clips were retrieved from Australia, and reunited with
the original audio tracks.
There is also unique footage from Peter's memorial service, with contributions from Dudley, Barry Humphries, and David Frost. Fans of Peter's work will be delighted by the rediscovered comedy gems (most
of which have either never been broadcast, or have remained unseen since their initial transmission some fifty years ago), while Lin reveals the tender and loving private side of a man better known for his acerbic public persona.
Update: Derek and Clive
16th November 2016. See
article from radiotimes.com
The Undiscovered Peter Cook features a 70-second piece of dialogue between Cook and his comedy co-conspirator Dudley Moore that uses the word 'cunt' 12 times and 'fuck' 15 times. It's rapid-fire vulgarity and is, almost certainly, the most
profanity riddled rant ever broadcast on British TV.
Because of its potential to offend it's only being shown after the express approval of the BBC's head of television Charlotte Moore.And the corporation insists it's the right decision:
This goes out well past the watershed in a 10pm slot with a very strong language warning, on a channel whose viewers are very familiar with its content, said a spokesperson. Peter Cook's unique brand of satire is well
known to comedy fans who would be accustomed to the strongest language from his Derek and Clive sketches with Dudley Moore.
The audio clip is carefully extracted from a 23-minute long sketch called The Horn on the pair's 1978
Derek and Clive spoken-word album Ad Nauseam , whose release marked the end of Cook and Moore's already combustible relationship. And, it's fair to say, despite the 'cunts' it's probably one of the tamest bits (a film of the recording was banned
in Britain for more than a decade).
The album track it's taken from, opens with Cook, as Clive, describing being sexually aroused by the sight of a dead Pope lying in state. The line delivered immediately after the 70-second extract used in the
documentary also contains the word 'nigger'.
Ofcom fines islamic TV channel for bad mouthing jews
|12th November 2016 |
See sanction report [pdf] from ofcom.org.uk
See article from thehindu.com
Britain's TV censor, Ofcom, has fined Peace TV Urdu £65,000 for discriminatory remarks about the jewish community.
Peace TV Urdu is part of Zakir Naik's Peace TV group based in India. The group is currently under Indian government scrutiny and
the process has been initiated to declare them terrorist entities under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. The channel is also banned in Bangladesh after the Dhaka Terror Attack on advice of the internal security agencies.
Ofcom found the
broadcast of the public lectures by an Islamic scholar highly critical and potentially offensive to the Jewish people. This was broadcast on September 12 and 13 on Peace TV Urdu.
Ofcom highlighted a number of discriminatory remarks made about the
Jewish people as an ethnic group in the lectures delivered by Islamic scholar Israr Ahmed who died in April 2010. The role and actions of the Jewish people through history from c.1500 to the present day were examined in the lectures that had comments
like this cursed people, this cursed race , found to be offensive under Ofcom's rules.
Ofcom observes that the breach of the code was serious as the content included numerous examples of overwhelmingly negative and stereotypical references
to Jewish people which, in its view, were a form of hate speech. The sanctions document notes:
Ofcom was concerned that the highly critical and negative statements made about Jewish people , uninterrupted by an
individual likely to be held in high status by the viewers of Peace TV Urdu had the clear potential to cause harm by portraying Jewish people in highly negative terms.
Peace TV expressed its sincere regret and acknowledged that the
programme should not have been broadcast.
The Walking Dead Season 7 censored for UK TV
|31st October 2016 |
Thanks to Andy
29th October 2016. See
article from gamesradar.com
[This article contains spoilers about the spoiled episode].
The Walking Dead Season 7 started n UK TV on Monday night on Fox UK. However the first episode was cut for violence.
In both the US and the UK
versions, Negan beats the heads of Abraham and Glenn into a bloody mess with his personalised barbed-wire baseball bat, Lucille. But the censored UK version is missing a dying promise from the gruesomely injured Glenn and the subsequent scene showing
Negan enthusiastically finishing him off.
Fox cited the violence and gruesome injury details as the reason for the cuts soon after the 9pm watershed. A FOX UK spokesperson told Digital Spy:
As Fox Networks Group
is regulated by Ofcom, we have a duty of care to ensure all our programmes broadcast adhere to the parameters of the Ofcom Broadcasting code,
However, the scenes were restored for additional late-night broadcasts.
Update: Recommended by Parents TV Council
31st October 2016. See
article from w2.parentstv.org
US morality campaigners are gushing with praise for the new season of The Walking Dead saying it was one of the most graphically violent shows they've ever seen on TV. The group wrote:
Last night's season premiere of
The Walking Dead was one of the most graphically violent shows we've ever seen on television, comparable to the most violent of programs found on premium cable networks. PTC President Tim Winter said:
It's not enough
to 'change the channel,' as some people like to advocate, because cable subscribers -- regardless of whether they want AMC or watch its programming -- are still forced to subsidize violent content. This brutally-explicit show is a powerful demonstration
of why families should have greater control over the TV networks they purchase from their cable and satellite providers.
Programs with violent content are proven to be harmful, especially to children; and most parents agree that
having greater control over violent content coming into their homes is vital to protecting their family. When a basic cable network like AMC edges or even surpasses the premium networks in terms of explicit content, consumers must be afforded more
control over which networks they purchase and which networks they don't.
BBC Trust puts an end to the complaint process about Barry Cryer joking about a colostomy bag
|29th October 2016 |
See article from chortle.co.uk
A pun Barry Cryer made on I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue has been referred to the highest level of the BBC after a listener took easy offence.
On the Radio 4 show in January, panellists were asked to add a word to the title of a song to make it
a lot less appealing. Cryer suggested Papa's got a brand new colostomy bag .
The listener complained that the joke was an offensive and unacceptable portrayal of disability and that mentioning the device for 'a laugh from a negative
stereotype was no longer acceptable'.
The whinge has progressed through the bizarre and tortuous route through the the BBC complaints process and has now been escalated to the BBC Trust in its role as BBC censor.
However a panel of the BBC
Trusts' editorial standards committee, has ended the complaint process by denying an appeal to the BBC Trust, the ultimate step available. The panel repeated the stance that the complainant had been dealt with fairly and appropriately and said:
The inclusion of this particular joke might well have caused offence to some but the introduction and the round itself, clearly set out its purpose to make a song 'a lot less appealing by the addition of a word. The humour
of the round lay in the change of context.
PC bullies demand that fiction should be re-written to suit their campaigns
||25th October 2016 |
See article from dailymail.co.uk
A rape scene on Sunday night's episode of Poldark has attracted just 14 complaints, surely a disappointment to PC campaigners.
A spokesman from TV censor Ofcom said the complaints would be assessed before deciding whether to investigate or
not. Usually this means that the complaints are already heading towards the wastepaper bin.
In the episode, Ross Poldark, played by fan-favourite Aidan Turner, turns up unannounced at the house of his former fiancee Elizabeth. He kicks in the
door and demands that she cancels her wedding to his enemy George Warleggan. She ignores what he says and instead asks him to leave, prompting him to take her face in his hands and forcefully kiss her. The scene continues until Poldark pushes her on to
the bed and she appears to finally give in to him.
Sarah Green, co-director of the campaign group End Violence Against Women, said:
It is definitely portrayed very much as a rape. The female character says
"no" and there are also non-verbal signs. She is moving away from him and pulling away from him. There is lots of stuff that is ambiguous.
The directors have done something really ambiguous. It is a really appalling
message, which is they have made the representation of non-consensual sex ambiguous by making her appear to change her mind.
Poldark is based on the novels of Winston Graham. Commenting on the controversial scene, the author's
son Andrew said:
There is no "shock rape" storyline in the novels. To say so is to misconstrue my father's text. The BBC has cut nothing and (production company) Mammoth Screen's portrayal of these scenes is
entirely true to my father's writing.
The only way to judge what my father intended is to read the novels as a whole. Doing so it becomes clear, from earlier scenes as well as from Elizabeth's immediate reactions and later mixed
emotions, that what finally happened was consensual sex born of long-term love and longing. It was, as Aidan Turner has put it, "unfinished business emotionally".
A few puerile whingers gripe about Emmerdale and Coronation Street
|21st October 2016 |
See article from huffingtonpost.co.uk
See article from mirror.co.uk
A few people have whinged to TV censor Ofcom about an Emmerdale story line based on the film Misery starring James Caan and Cathy Bates.
The episode saw Emma Barton drug her husband James, before killing a chicken, cooking it, and
feeding it to her husband, who was tied to a chair. When James did finally break free, he whacked her over the head with a wine bottle.
Seven viewers didn't enjoy the scene and whinged to Ofcom, claiming it was unsuitable for showing at 7pm.
An Ofcom spokesman said: We will assess these complaints, before deciding whether to investigate or not, which seems to be Ofcom speak for the complaints being consigned to their rightful place in the wastepaper bin.
Meanwhile a few more
people have been wound up by the soaps, this time, Coronation Street . The character David Platt screamed the word bastard in a pre-watershed episode this week.
The Sun reported that 20 people whinged to Ofcom who again commented:
We will assess these complaints, before deciding whether to investigate or not.
The Mirror dragged up a few trivial tweets from angry viewers. eg:
Didn't realise coronation street was an over 18 programme
swearing before 8 tut tut @ITV
I've just heard the word 'bastard' on Coronation Street and I'm honestly shocked!
The Fall, crime porn pandering to viewers who enjoy gritty dramas
|9th October 2016
Thanks to Nick
The actress Doon Mackichan has whinged about what she calls crime porn -- the use of brutalised women as entertainment fodder in television dramas such as The Fall .
The Smack the Pony actress calls on broadcasters to bring
the body count down in a documentary for BBC Radio 4 in which she examines the prevalence of scenes of sexual violence involving women.
Mackichan focuses on shows such as The Killing , Luther and True Detective as well as
interviewing Allan Cubitt, writer and director of The Fall. The BBC drama starring Gillian Anderson about a detective on the trail of a serial killer. Mackichan attacked the show saying:
We've reached zero tolerance of
these overused images and can move on from stories of brutalised women as entertainment fodder.
Cubitt countered telling Mackichan:
I don't know how you could possibly argue The Fall is misogynistic
. The Fall sets out to critique these things. My mantra was always that we shouldn't sensationalise it, but we shouldn't sanitise it either.
In an interview for BBC Radio 4's Seriously ... podcast, Mackichan said she would:
Like there to be a real sea change ... because it bleeds into our culture. We do have a lot of what I call crime porn. The onus is with commissioners who commission these programmes, and with screenwriters ... who are
pandering to the appetite that has been created.
Radio 4's Don't Make Me Laugh axed, as perhaps jokes about the Queen's sex life were a little bit too funny for the BBC
Thanks to Nick
BBC Radio 4 has axed Don't Make Me Laugh hosted by David Baddiel after 'outrage' over jokes about the Queen's sex life on her 90th birthday .
One pre-recorded episode, which aired at 6.30pm on the day of the Queen's 90th birthday, included the
subject The Queen must have had sex at least four times .
The BBC received about 120 complaints about the show and the corporation's governing body, the BBC Trust, ruled that the panellists' comments were personal, intrusive and
It is understood that the BBC's decision to drop the series was not based on the BBC Trust ruling and is keen to work with Baddiel again in the future.