A study by the regulator Ofcom into viewer expectations in the digital world has found confusion over the rules that apply to online catch-up and subscription services where the platforms have access to programmes previously shown on broadcast TV.
Participants expected programmes previously screened by broadcast TV to be covered by the existing rules for TV.
Viewers didn’t see original content produced for streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime any differently.
They felt comfortable with fewer rules of catch up services because they were aware they had made an active choice on selecting the content.
However, there was concern over video-sharing sites, and the perceived lack of regulation. They were worried that videos with graphic sexual content, homophobia, racism and violence could be found. Participants referred to how videos could be uploaded without restrictions.
Platforms connected to traditional channels, such as ITV Hub and BBC iPlayer, were also assumed to be easier to regulate than subscription services, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, that were not linked to a British broadcaster. Broadband TV News