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Lesbian TV romps anger parent

PUBLISHED: 21:14 29 May 2003 | UPDATED: 13:56 03 March 2010

A GLOBAL satellite broadcaster today launched a full investigation after a Felixstowe parent witnessed steamy sex scenes, just a channel hop from the BBC.

A GLOBAL satellite broadcaster today launched a full investigation after a Felixstowe parent witnessed steamy sex scenes, just a channel hop from the BBC.

NTL, which has thousands of subscribers in the Ipswich and Suffolk, has pledged to clean up its act following complaints that one of its free previews – available to all – is distinctly XXX.

The parent of four, who asked not to be named, was watching the satellite channel at 8.30pm on Bank Holiday Monday, when he spotted the hardcore advert.

He said: "I was scrolling through the channels in the early evening. The channel next to BBC1, which is channel 101, is channel 980 and called Private Blue.

"It is a pay per view channel but the free preview was of a very sexual nature, including lesbian sex. I am a broad-minded liberal and not easily shocked but I am appalled anyone of my children could have seen this."

Satellite channels are governed by the same rules as all broadcasters and cannot show anything unsuitable to children before 9pm.

Helena Hurd, from the Independent Television Commission, which regulates up to 400 television channels, said: "We do not discriminate between heterosexual sex scenes and lesbian sex scenes. It is possible to show some sex scenes before the watershed, depending on the level of nudity and explicitness. We appreciate the channel is close to BBC1 but that will always be a problem of multi-channel broadcasting."

A formal complaint has yet to be received regarding channel 980 - which made it difficult to comment further, she added.

An NTL spokeswoman said: "The content of anything we broadcast must comply with station's licence regulations. We are aware that this channel does show a ten-minute trailer but, if it goes out at 8.30pm, it must comply with certain regulations. It's not ideal and we will look into it further."

She went on: "NTL is the broadcaster. We act as a feed. If the channel is in breach of the conditions of its licence, it could be closed down."

In 2002, the ITC received 7,830 complaints about 2,252 adverts – 3,797 of which objected to the adverts being too offensive. It upheld complaints against 136 of them.

FAST FACTS

Top ten most complained about ads in 2002

1. Pot Noodle

2. Auctionworld

3. XBOX – Birth to Grave

4. Hula Hoops Shoks

5. NSPCC – cartoon

6. McDonald's zoo trip

7. Vodafone – Flirting

8. Carphone Warehouse – Not just for Xmas

9. Carling Black Label – Frustration

10. Yorkie – Girl builder


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