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Communications Act 2003

Schedule 15: Amendments of Broadcasting Acts

923.This Schedule amends the 1990 and 1996 Acts. Many of the amendments are simply to update those Acts in line with this Act, for example to change references to the Independent Television Commission and the Radio Authority into references to OFCOM or to add references to the Act where relevant to the application or interpretation of those Acts. Other amendments include−


additional powers for OFCOM to obtain information under sections 5(2) and 88(2) of the 1990 Act (see paragraphs 3 and 35) and sections 5(2) and 44(2) of the 1996 Act (see paragraphs 78 and 104) in connection with ownership restrictions in relation to television and radio broadcasting licences;


changes to make sections 15 to 17A of the 1990 Act (which concern the award of Channel 3 and Channel 5 licences) reflect, in particular, the self-regulation of the delivery of public service remits by those channels (see paragraphs 7 to 10);


amendments in section 89 (see paragraph 36), which disqualifies a person from holding certain radio licences if he or she has been convicted of certain broadcasting offences in the previous five years, and also provides that a licence holder must do all that he or she can to ensure that a person convicted of any such offence is not concerned in the operation of a wireless telegraphy station broadcasting the service. The list of offences is amended, and subsection (3) is amended to provide that a licence holder must also do all he or she can to ensure that a disqualified person is not concerned in the provision of the service or of programmes for inclusion in the service (and section 60 of the 1996 Act is amended to extend most of section 89 to digital sound programme licences – see paragraph 119). These amendments do not apply to offences committed before the amendments come in to effect;


to provide that no more than one member of the Welsh Authority may be a person who is a member or an employee of OFCOM (see paragraph 71);


amendments to provisions in the 1996 Act relating to “multiplex revenue” to take account of amendments elsewhere in this Act (see section 242 in particular) for the carriage of digital sound programme services on television multiplexes, and because broadcasting services (e.g. digital sound and digital television programme services) might in future be carried on general multiplex services (within the meaning given in section 362(1));


to bring the definition of “digital additional services” (section 24 of the 1996 Act) into line with concepts in this Act (e.g. “available for reception by members of the public”) and to allow for such services to be carried on general multiplex services (see paragraph 93);


to bring Part 5 of the 1996 Act, which concerns the Broadcasting Standards Commission, into line with this Act (see paragraphs 132 to 137), in consequence of the repeal of provisions about standards complaints and the transfer of the Commission’s functions as respects fairness and privacy to OFCOM (see also section 327).

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