Satellite channel KTV has been handed a £50,000 fine by regulator Ofcom for multiple attempts at inciting crime, including murder.
A music video and a programme fell foul of UK broadcasting rules during 2018 and 2019. A decision to sanction the broadcaster was announced today.
The music video, broadcast in July 2018, was found to be “an indirect call to action for Sikhs living in the UK to commit violence, up to and including murder.” Ofcom also found that the video contained subliminal flashes containing frames of on-screen text. The regulator said it appeared “to be seeking to influence viewers by conveying a message to them or otherwise influencing their minds without their being aware, or fully aware, of what has occurred.”
A live discussion show broadcast in March 2019 allowed several guests to express views which Ofcom said “amounted to indirect calls to action”, likely to encourage or incite the commission of crime or lead to disorder. Ofcom also found that it included a reference to a proscribed terrorist organisation.
KTV must now pay a £20,000 fine for the music video and a £30,000 fine for the discussion programme. It will also broadcast a statement of Ofcom’s findings at a time that suits Ofcom on its Sky channel. KTV is banned from repeating the items.
Ofcom’s action is the latest in a series of increased scrutiny of niche channels. In the last year, it’s found Loveworld, Republic Bharat, Islam Channel and Peace TV Urdu guilty of contravening broadcasting rules. In addition to inciting violence, Ofcom has found broadcasters peddling hate crime and pandemic conspiracy theories.