Alliance hails their victory in campaign against rip-off TV phone quizzes

Following months of campaigning on the issue, Alliance Spokesperson Councillor Alan Lawther has backed today’s report published by broadcast standards watchdog Ofcom recommending a crackdown on ripoff phone quizzes. Alliance has been working for a number of months with Ofcom and has put pressure on them to place strong regulations on TV phone-in quizzes to protect participants. The hard-hitting Ayre Inquiry, conducted by Richard Ayre who is an Ofcom Board Member and is former Deputy Chief Executive of BBC News, was published today. It has recommended that Ofcom amends broadcaster’s licenses to ensure greater consumer protection and that they commission third party auditing of TV phone in practices.

Cllr Alan Lawther stated: “I am very pleased that our Alliance campaign to crack down on rip-off TV phone in quizzes is working and has been vindicated. The Ayre Inquiry has produced very hard-hitting findings and stated that ‘Some broadcasters appeared to be in denial about their responsibilities’ and that ‘There was an apparent lack of transparency’.

“I am extremely glad that the inquiry has set out strong recommendations to give Ofcom more power in the drive against rip-off TV quizzes. It has called on Ofcom to ensure that broadcaster’s licenses better protect consumers and to commission third party auditing of TV phone quiz practices.

“Alliance has been campaigning on this issue for a number of months now, and I am glad that our concerns about phone-in quizzes have been recognised. Some of these quizzes are cynical money-making schemes with the revenue gained from the premium line phone calls being far greater than the value of any prizes awarded. I am glad that the Ayre Inquiry offers ways to end these practices – Ofcom must now implement the findings of this inquiry.”


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