Ofcom has imposed a £25,000 (€28,750) fine on Greener Technology Limited after material broadcast on its satellite television channel, Ben TV, broke broadcasting rules.
Ben TV is a general entertainment channel which describes itself as an “ethnic orientated channel”.
The media watchdog’s investigation found that Peter Popoff Ministries – a programme featuring footage from televangelist Peter Popoff’s religious services – contained frequent invitations for viewers to order “free miracle spring water”. The programme included a number of testimonies from individuals who claimed, or strongly implied, that using the water had cured serious illnesses, including cancer.
Ofcom concluded that the claims made in the programme had the potential to cause harm to members of the audience who may have been led to believe that the “miracle spring water” alone was sufficient to cure their health conditions and that it was unnecessary to rely on, or continue receiving, conventional medical treatment.
Ofcom concluded that Greener Technology Limited did not take steps to provide adequate protection for such viewers and that there was a material risk that susceptible members of the audience may have been improperly exploited by the programme. Ofcom also concluded that the programme promoted a product – the “miracle spring water” in breach of the Broadcasting Code. to repeat the programme.