Xfm Contest No Joke To Ofcom
August 12, 2008 at 5:34 AM (PT)
A joke contest on GCAP MEDIA Alternative XFM/LONDON wasn't funny to U.K. radio regulator OFCOM, which warned the station that some listeners wouldn't get the joke.
The "competition," a bit called "Random Question Generator" on RICK SHAW's show, involved nonsensical questions, with SHAW facetiously agreeing to the contestant's prize requests (including "a girlfriend," "a private jet," and "a pint of milk"). One contestant didn't recognize the joke and filed a complaint with the regulator. Despite GCAP's assertion that listeners would clearly be in on the joke, OFCOM said that because some of the prizes seemed reasonable, some listeners may be misled. The agency said that "XFM should make every effort to ensure that its listeners are not misled in the future by the comical nature of such competitions and that it is made clear to listeners and competition entrants what prize is actually on offer – and that the requested prizes will not be awarded. This is especially important when listeners are paying to enter a competition on the understanding that it is being conducted fairly and that the prize on offer has been described accurately."
TINDLE RADIO's AC DREAM 100/ESSEX was also found by OFCOM to have breached the rules with a text message solicitation for dedications during a show that was pre-recorded. The texts cost 25p plus network rates, but nobody at the station was there to read the texts on the air.
OFCOM also warned UTV Talk TALK107/EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND for airing a regular travel feature that it said was not adequately identified as sponsored by the TRAVEL COMPANY EDINBURGH.
GLOBAL RADIO's AC SGR/COLCHESTER was found in breach of the rules for allowing late night Talk host GRAHAM TORRINGTON to promote his personal website hatebeingsingle.com on the show.
And PREMIER CHRISTIAN RADIO was censured for airing an ad for "THE POLITICS PROGRAMME" on REVELATION TV and GENESIS TV that the agency concluded favored a particular candidate for Mayor of LONDON, CHRISTIAN PARTY nominee ALAN CRAIG, and therefore violated the ban on political advertising.