Ofcom amends broadcasting regulations

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UK broadcast regulator Ofcom has confirmed changes to its Broadcasting Code and Code on the Scheduling of Television Advertising following consultation.

The changes reflect new requirements on broadcasters under the revised Audiovisual Media Services Regulation 2020, and also take account of legislative changes following the end of the transition period for the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union.

In brief, Ofcom is amending:

  • the definition of hate speech in Section Three (Crime, disorder, hatred and abuse) of the Broadcasting Code;
  • Section Nine (Commercial references on TV) of the Broadcasting Code, to reflect new product placement provisions; and
  • the Code on the Scheduling of Television Advertising (COSTA), to reflect advertising provisions under the European Convention on Transfrontier Television.

It is also making other minor and administrative updates to the Broadcasting Code.

Both the revised Broadcasting Code and the revised COSTA will take effect from 23:00 on December 31st 2020, when the Brexit transition period ends.


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