Gaffe A "Significant Breach Of Audience Trust"
Ofcom, the TV regulation watchdog, has concluded that ITV mislead audiences last September when they showed ArmA II videogame footage in a documentary... and claimed that it depicted real IRA insurgents shooting down a British helicopter. ITV apologised for the (incredibly embarrassing) mistake soon after it was spotted, but regardless, Ofcom has found them to be "in breach of the broadcasting code." Full statement below.
As reported by the BBC (who faced recent allegations of misleading audiences with Polar Bear footage filmed in controlled zoo conditions, though at least it wasn't taken from a Skyrim mod), Ofcom has ruled that ITV are guilty of misleading their viewers by broadcasting videogame footage in a serious documentary that claimed to prove links between Gaddafi and the IRA. However, due to ITV's swift action in apologising and implementing new content safeguards, no further action or penalties will be necessary.
We take into account that ITV: apologised; removed the programme from its catch-up video-on-demand service; and has now put in place various changes to its compliance procedures to ensure such incidents do not happen in future.
However, the viewers of this serious current affairs programme were misled as to the nature of the material they were watching.
Still, it's an embarrassing stain on their record... even if it's technically also a nice bit of publicity for ArmA II.