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The principle of section one is to protect minors of
material that may cause physical or mental harm to their development.1 This
section outlines the rules around scheduling and content information in regards
to protecting the children2. Scheduling
should be judged appropriately according to nature, the likely audience and the
time which it is being broadcast. Meaning that television broadcasters must
observe the watershed rule which typically commences around 9pm and must be especially
careful “when children are particularly likely to be listening”. This phrase refers
to mainly the school run and breakfast time. Broadcasters must take reasonable
precaution in protecting children. When referencing sexual offence cases,
broadcasters must implement restrictions which prevent the minor’s
identification from the public at all times.


Section two projects the standards for broadcast content. The
section is to provide adequate protection for members of the public from any
harmful or offensive material. Acceptable standards must be implemented at all
times in reference to television and radio services. Meaning it is to provide
adequate protection for members of the public from inclusion in such services
of any harmful or offensive material.3

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The next section of the code covers material that is “likely
to incite crime or disorder”, which reflects Ofcom’s duty to disallow the
broadcast of this type of programme4. Programmes
are unable to include material that is likely to incite or encourage crime of
any nature. Material which encourages derogatory or abusive treatments to any
individual is unable to be broadcasted unless justifiable. Broadcasters’ must
pay specific attention to Sections 225 and 29F
of the Public Order Act 1986, which sets out the criminal offences which can result
from the broadcast of hatred of any description.


Section four revolves around religious sensitivity,
especially within our community. Religious programmes must always be fair and
accurate with the identity of the religion clear to the views. Ofcom’s
principle is clear and states that it is there “to ensure that broadcasters
exercise the proper degree of responsibility with respect to the content of
specifically when dealing with religion as the central subject or when religion
takes up a significant part of the programme.


News must always be reported with due accuracy and offered
with due impartiality and in certain situations, that special impartiality
requirements are compiled with.7
Impartiality simply means to not favour one side over the other. Programmes
should never favour with any political organisation and should clearly convey
this on air. Mistakes are usually acknowledged fast and dealt with


Respect for privacy is an increasingly important section. This
section ensures that broadcasters are able to avoid unjust or unfair treatment,
specifically of individuals or organisations in programmes. Most filming and
broadcast should be done with clear consent, even when in public. The right to
fairness and privacy apply mainly to how broadcasters cooperate with individuals
or organisations which can be directly affected by their programmes. This is to
guarantee that broadcasters avoid any unwarranted infringement of privacy in

1 Protecting Under 18s

2 Section 1 OFCOM

Section 2 OFCOM

4 Section 3

5 Public Disorder Act 1986

Section 4 OFCOM

Due Impartiality

8 Section 7 OFCOM

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