MEDIA: IPA calls for TV code changes

The Independent Television Commission is coming under increasing pressure to relax the regulations in its Code of Programme Sponsorship.

The Independent Television Commission is coming under increasing

pressure to relax the regulations in its Code of Programme Sponsorship.



The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising wants the ITC to lift its

ban on companies sponsoring programmes related to their business. It

specifically calls for rules on general interest programmes such as

cookery, gardening and motoring to be relaxed so that they can be

sponsored by related companies.



The IPA also wants the freedom to include slogans or straplines which

form part of a registered trademark within visual and aural credits.



The ITC code will be reviewed in the spring although no date has been

set for when the findings will be published.



IPA deputy director general John Raad says a change is necessary as the

increase in the number of channels, particularly themed or specialist

channels, will be a catalyst for commercial businesses sourcing and

funding a greater proportion of programming.



The IPA’s call for change coincides with the publication this week of an

ITC report which ticks off two companies for breaches of its code.



Channel 4 was reprimanded for a Nokia sponsorship of the Moviewatch

programme. The report said the use of the word ‘pioneer’ in the sponsor

credit, which read ‘Nokia - pioneer of Widescreen Television’, was

promotional and went beyond indicating the connection between the

sponsor and the programme. The word was changed to ‘makers’.



Live TV was criticised for allowing London Transport to sponsor the

travel reports on Westminster Live, the news service it provides for the

Westminster Cable area. The ITC said it represented an unacceptable

conflict of interest.



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