Broadcasters pledge to work with Ofcom over sexualised music video controversy

Industry figures are 'relaxed' over yesterday's Bailey report

The media and advertising industries are taking a “relaxed” view of government-backed plans to clamp down on sexualised imagery, including raunchy music videos.

The UK government has backed a report, the result of a six-month review, carried out by Mother’s Union chief executive Reg Bailey in response to concerns over the commercialisation and sexualisation of children.

There had been the possibility of legislation to prevent the use and promotion of certain imagery. However, Bailey‘s report merely calls for voluntary regulation, according to The Guardian.

Yesterday (June 6) saw David Cameron call for a summit in October, attended by music industry chiefs and regulators, retailers, advertisers, magazine editors and games publishers to gauge progress. There was a looking threat of legislation in 18 months if tighter self-regulation was not implemented.

There has been a slew of controversy over sexual imagery in music recently. Notably, December’s X Factor final attracted 4,500 complaints to Ofcom after raunchy performances from Rihanna and Christina Aguilera.

A spokesperson for ITV, which broadcasts the talent show, has said: “As the UK’s leading commercial channel we have built up a very effective two-way exchange with our viewers in a bid to ensure that ITV’s programming continues to meet their expectations.”

Channel 4, which runs its own music station 4Music, said: “Channel 4 recognises that decisions on the suitability of content for broadcast at various times of the day are important to our viewers. We note the issues raised in the Bailey review, and will continue to make considered editorial judgements about the suitability of content around the watershed.”

For their part, Ofcom said: “Protection of children is one of Ofcom‘s most important statutory duties and we therefore welcome Reg Bailey‘s review of this significant area. Ofcom recognises the critical importance of parents’ views about what children watch on TV. We will continue to focus on exploring parents’ views in our enforcement of broadcasting standards relating to the protection of children.”