Advanced Television

Discovery hit with £100k Ofcom fine

July 28, 2014

By Colin Mann

Investigation Discovery – a channel dedicated to documentary programming about crime and criminal investigations – has been fined £100,000 (€126,000) by UK broadcast regulator Ofcom for what are described as “serious” breaches of its broadcasting Code.

The sanction relates to eight episodes of the series Deadly Women which the channel broadcast at various times during the day on 16, 18 and 20 August 2013.

The licence for Investigation Discovery is held by Discovery Communications Europe

In its decision published on 20 January 2014 in issue 246 of its Broadcast Bulletin, Ofcom found that the programmes contained violent material that was unsuitable for children to view, and that caused offence not justified by the context.

As these programmes were broadcast in the daytime during the school holidays, Ofcom concluded that the Licensee had not taken adequate steps to protect children from this unsuitable content by appropriate scheduling.

In accordance with Ofcom’s penalty guidelines, Ofcom decided that it was appropriate and proportionate in the circumstances to impose a financial penalty of £100,000 on Discovery in respect of these serious Code breaches. In addition, Discovery is obliged to broadcast a statement of Ofcom’s findings in this case, on a date and time to be determined by Ofcom.

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