ITC fines MTV Europe £40,000 for breaching free publicity rules

MTV Networks Europe has been fined £40,000 by the Independent Television Commission (ITC) after it gave too much free on-air publicity to theme park Alton Towers, the donor of a competition prize.

Presenters of an MTV video request programme called Select made several scripted references to Alton Towers, where only one mention is allowed.

The “Scarily Big Hits” weekend programming also made an “unjustifiable number” of references to Alton Towers as well as showing clips of rides and an animated logo.

The ITC, the TV watchdog, ruled that there had been breaches of its programme code and code of programme sponsorship. In the light of other breaches by MTV, the ITC judged there was a continuing failing in this area and that it had to fine the station.

An ITC spokesman says: “The commission wants to ensure that there is no commercial influence on programming, that licensees retain full editorial control, and that programmes do not contain any unjustifiable references to branded products or services.”

MTV insisted that although Alton Towers was one of its advertisers, there had been no commercial arrangement for the weekend’s programming.

The station said it was recruiting an extra compliance officer and was giving its staff more training in this area.

Recommended

Digest

Marketing Week

The National Magazine Company’s magazine Company is to launch a fashion accessory collection including bags and purses. It will be on sale from mid-December.

Anglian Water expands into Net shopping

Marketing Week

The search by utilities companies for higher margin business took a new turn this week with the announcement that Anglian Water is launching a direct shopping service for home appliances. The company is to sell a range of more than 5,000 products, including dishwashers and washing machines, on the Internet and by phone. It will […]

Comments

    Leave a comment

    Close

    Discover even more as a subscriber

    This article is available for subscribers only.

    Sign up now for your access-all-areas pass.

    Subscribers get unlimited access to unrivalled coverage of the biggest issues in marketing and world-renowned columnists, alongside carefully curated reports and briefings from Econsultancy. Find out more.

    If you are an existing print subscriber find out how you can get access here.

    Subscribe now

    Got a question?

    Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

    If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here

    Subscribers get unlimited access to unrivalled coverage of the biggest issues in marketing and world-renowned columnists, alongside carefully curated reports and briefings from Econsultancy. Find out more.

    If you are an existing print subscriber find out how you can get access here.

    Subscribe now