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    Friday, 23 March 2007

    Subverting the ban on political advertising?

    The Times has an interesting comment today on the possibilities of using online video-sharing sites to subvert the ban on party political and social cause advertising on the broadcast media (ss319 and 321, Communications Act 2003). The ban was challenged unsuccessfully in the High Court last year by Animal Defenders International (ADI). The comment suggests that a ban on one medium only has become obsolete - and hence, to my mind at least, indefensible (and this allied to the fact that it is simply unnecessary). The case was to be appealed direct to the House of Lords, but I'm not sure if this is happening.

    Interestingly, after ADI uploaded its campaign videos (1,2,3) to YouTube in February, it quickly moved into the top 16 Most Viewed Directors’ videos on the website.

    2 comments:

    Anonymous said...

    For a related story - from the campaign for the Democratic Party nomination in the US - on this point, see: http://business.guardian.co.uk/story/0,,2042049,00.html

    ...and countless US blogs

    Eoin O'Dell said...

    If I might be permitted to point to an Irish example, similar Irish legislation bans both political and religious advertising. When the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland sought to ban a charity's ad on the basis that it was campaigning and therefore political, the radio advert was immediately podcast, the tv advert was immediately available on YouTube, and the charity itself made them available on their own website. The matter was eventually resolved by a revision to the text of the ads. I have posts about it here and here on my blog, the first detailing the legal background, the second discussing the outcome of that controversy and other similar ones relating to both bans.

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