Sky News has been slapped on the wrist for broadcasting a repeat of an expletive-filled documentary about Harvey Weinstein during the middle of the day.
The Comcast-owned broadcaster aired hour-long doc Weinstein: Hollywood’s Reckoning, which tells the story of the disgraced movie mogul’s downfall due to a raft of sexual abuse allegations, at 3pm in the afternoon. The problem, however, was that some of the language in the doc, which originally aired in a primetime slot on its sister channel Sky Atlantic, was not fit for a daytime audience.
The offending comment was from an ex-employee of the Weinstein Company, who commented, “I said: ‘you know what? I quit, and your brother is a fxxking pig’”.
Regulator Ofcom received a complaint about the offensive language and found the network in breach of Rule 1.14, which states that “offensive language must not be broadcast before the watershed unless it is justified by the context”.
Sky News accepted that the doc was mistakenly played out on Sky News during the daytime. It claimed that the version used “was not marked with a post watershed restriction and it was wrongly assumed that it was suitable for daytime transmission”. As a result, the broadcaster has reviewed its processes and introduced new guidance setting out that the most offensive language should not used in pre-recorded content unless there is approval from the Head of News or one of their deputies.
In addition, it told Ofcom that any content that is not broadcast on Sky News first must be reviewed and approved in advance of any broadcast on Sky News.
A Sky spokesman told Deadline, “We’re sorry to our viewers for the offensive language which was mistakenly played out on Sky News. We’ve taken the appropriate steps to make sure it won’t happen again.”