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The ITC Code on Sports and Other Listed Events is a series of regulations issued by the Independent Television Commission which is designed to protect the availability of live coverage of so-called "listed events" in sport — typically major sporting occasions — on free-to-air services (terrestrial television) in the United Kingdommarker.

The origins of the Code come from the Broadcasting Act 1996. Although the Home Secretary, Kenneth Baker, had devised a list of events not permitted to be broadcast on pay-per-view services in 1991, the Act required the ITC to create a permanent list of such events. In 1997, the initial list was drawn up, and was revised in 1999, where the Code was divided into two categories, A and B. The Code was further amended in 2000 to give the ITC responsibility over UK-based broadcasters wanting to transmit listed events in other countries.

In July 2000, a British-based broadcaster, TV Danmark, challenged the ITC's decision to deny it the rights to five Danish World Cup qualifiers. After having the decision overturned on appeal, the ITC appealed to the House of Lordsmarker. The Lords found in favour of the ITC, and the decision was upheld.

The list is currently subject to a legal challenge by UEFA [83240].

Category A

Category A events are events which must have live coverage made available to free-to-air channels, although pay-TV networks may share live coverage. As of 2000, these events are:

Category B

Category B events can be shown on pay TV, provided sufficient secondary coverage (highlights, delayed broadcast, etc.) is made to free-to-air broadcasters. As of 2000, the events covered by this category are:

Home Test matches

The England cricket team's home Test matches were originally a Category A event. However, the England and Wales Cricket Board negotiated for it to be transferred to Category B and subsequently, and highly controversially, sold exclusive live broadcast rights for the 2006-09 home cricket seasons to Sky Sports.

BBC proposal

The BBC unveiled a proposed reordering of the list on 30 July 2009. Most notably, it would create a new category for events that would have to be aired live in their entirety on a free-to-air channel.

List A1

These events would have to be aired live in their entirety on a free to air channel.

List A2

These events, generally seen as only important to one Home Nation, would have to be aired live in their entirety on a free to air channel in only that nation.

List A3

This list's definition is identical to the current Category A. Free-to-air channels must air coverage, but it can be shared by subscription channels.

List B

These events may be shown on a subscription channel if highlights are made available to a free-to-air channel.

Proposed Revision

On November 13, 2009 a review panel proposed the following revised list and that the Category B list be scrapped. Under these proposals the Epsom Derby, Winter Olympics and Challenge Cup final would be removed from the list.

Listed Events

These events would have to be shown live in their entirety on UK-wide, free-to-air television, unless it is otherwise noted.

See also



References

  1. http://www.culture.gov.uk/reference_library/media_releases/6436.aspx



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