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BSA finds tennis promo not in breach of broadcasting standards

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The Broadcasting Standards Authority has not upheld two complaints about a promo for the ASB Women’s Classic tennis competition which screened on Sky Sport in January 2020. The promo, which was repeated throughout broadcast coverage of the competition, depicted a brief action shot of a tennis player hitting the ball during which her skirt flies up.

The Authority acknowledged that the repeated use of the clip was unfortunate. However, it did not uphold the complaint under the good taste and decency and discrimination and denigration standards finding that the clip was brief and inexplicit and was shown in a sporting context. The Authority observed that the shot was not gratuitous or titillating but was an image of an athlete in motion. It found that ultimately the clip was not likely to undermine community standards of good taste and decency and did not contain condemnation of or malice towards women as required to find a breach of the discrimination and denigration standard under current guidelines.

In making this decision, the BSA noted the high threshold for regulatory intervention, and that Sky Television provided an explanation for the selection of the clip and explained that it had changed its processes for clip selection and removed this particular clip from its content library.

The Authority was satisfied that the promo would not cause harm at a level justifying regulatory intervention.

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