STANDARDS AND PRACTICES
Adhering to Broadcast Regulations can be a challenge in itself. But this isn’t all that needs considering. Alongside ensuring you remain compliant and can justify content, editorial compliance teams also have to consider the channel brands and editorial policy, if they don’t want marketing and on air teams disgruntled because shows aren’t being edited in line with the editorial values of the channel! For smaller channels, particularly those with content originating and produced under a different regulator, these guidelines allow for clarity on levels of acceptability in the destination country.
Editorial Compliance consistency is difficult to achieve and maintain, particularly in a large team with multiple people viewing and editing content. Documentation detailing editorial policy and compliance boundaries, for all brands and content types, is key to both on air consistency, and assisting with regulatory justifications.
Channels should therefore have policy documentation detailing the standards and practices expected on air. These are adhered to by all internal content handling teams as well as external producers, commissioned to make shows. Creating these documents is time consuming and in depth; most networks want to ensure every conceivable content type and scenario is accounted for as well as boundaries for content types. For example, the level of offensive language or slang which you may see on the BBC at 8pm is likely to vary to the same language seen on MTV, or the Horror Channel. There’s multiple reasons for this. BBC exists because of tax payer’s money, and they therefore have a very sizable and specific list of criteria which has to be adhered to in their content. The BBC also serves a wider and far reaching audience of all ages and demographics. MTV and the Horror Channel however, don’t appeal to everybody and their viewers have a level of expectation when going to watch the channel, of the type of content they will likely see.
EBBC can help you create all kinds of standards and practices for your business, including the important Editorial Policy, your channels need to adhere to. These documents allow for consistency editorially on air as well as a robust way of proving to the regulator that you are considered and thoughtful in your compliance approach and obligations. Bluntly put, if your viewers know what to expect from your channel because you’re consistent in your approach, you have a strong argument if there’s complaints.