Impact of the 2003 Communication Act on UK Indie Producers

“The UK’s independent television production sector is one of the biggest and most successful in the world. Built on a foundation of almost unrivalled creative ideas and programme making talent, it has benefitted from a number of regulatory interventions that have helped it to grow from a cottage industry in the 1980s to a global superpower. In so doing, a sector has been created that is now worth more than £3 billion (CA$ 5.67 billion) a year and makes a major contribution to the UK creative economy and exports.
Amongst the most crucial of these interventions was the UK government’s 2003 Act which established formal Codes of Practice for how each of the country’s PSBs (BBC, ITV, Channel 4, and Channel 5) should commission programmes from indies. The implementation of these Codes of Practice led to the introduction of negotiated Terms of Trade, with each PSB having its own agreement.
This report provides further detail on the impact of the Terms of Trade, looking closely at how they were introduced and how they affected Indies, broadcasters and also UK television viewers. It will also consider how Ofcom’s ongoing involvement has been crucial to the realisation of these successes.”

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