Apple TV+ and other streamers could be hit with new, stiffer UK legislation

Apple TV+ and other streamers could be hit with new, stiffer UK legislation

Apple TV+ Apple TV interfaceSource: Joseph Keller / iMore

A new review of the online media industry in the UK could see the likes of Apple TV+ and Netflix come under additional scrutiny and future legislation. The review hopes to ensure that streaming services are made to play on a level playing field with local outfits like the BBC, ITV, and Sky.

Announced this morning and spotted by MacRumors, the review will look at whether UK broadcasters are put at a disadvantage compared to their international competition. It will also consider whether streamers meet requirements in terms of age ratings and impartiality when airing documentaries.

It will consider whether new rules are needed to protect viewers of video-on-demand services – such as changes to age ratings and addressing impartiality and accuracy rules for documentaries and news content – alongside measures to level the playing field so public service broadcasters can compete with international rivals.

The issue stems from the fact online streaming services aren’t regulated in the same way as traditional ones, save BBC iPlayer which “includes enhanced protections to audiences from harmful or offensive material and rules on accuracy and impartiality.” Current regulation has been around for almost 20 years, making it almost useless.

It is also almost twenty years since the UK broadcast sector’s regulatory framework was introduced in the Communications Act 2003, which was designed before the arrival of online companies such as Apple+, Amazon Prime and Netflix in their current form.

The results of the review will be published in a white paper this fall, the announcement says.

Why not treat yourself to one of the best TVs we could find while you wait? You deserve to watch your Apple TV content in the best way possible, after all.

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