Audience Complaints

Complaints assessed under the Broadcasting Code

Viewers and listeners in the UK have long enjoyed a rich heritage of broadcasting and quality programming.

But sometimes you may see something on TV - or hear a programme on radio - which you find offensive or think is harmful.

Every time Ofcom receives a complaint from a viewer or listener, we assess it under the Broadcasting Code to see if it needs further investigation.

The Code sets standards for television and radio shows and broadcasters have to follow these rules.

Broadcasting Code

These rules not only cover harm and offence, but also other areas like impartiality and accuracy, sponsorship and commercial references as well as fairness and privacy.

For example, the Code has rules on what can be screened on TV before the 9pm watershed.

If we find a programme has broken these rules, then it will be found in breach of the Code and Ofcom will publish this decision.

In very serious cases, we will consider further action (e.g. fining a broadcaster).

Broadcast and On Demand Bulletin

Every fortnight Ofcom publishes its Broadcast Bulletin. This includes the latest decisions about the complaints we've received.

If you would like to learn more you can read our current Broadcast and On Demand Bulletin.


It is not possible for us to list every complaint we have received – but here is a list in alphabetical order of those programmes that received more than 10 standards complaints last week (we do not include fairness and privacy complaints in this list).

Report covers complaints received between: Tuesday, 14 June 2016 to Monday, 20 June 2016

Big Brother Sunday, 12 June 2016 Channel 5 : 75
Press Preview Sunday, 12 June 2016 Sky News : 43
A Referendum Campaign Broadcast by the Vote Leave Campaign Tuesday, 14 June 2016 BBC1 : 22
BBC2 : 8
BBC Radio 4 : 3
Channel 4 : 2
Total : 35
A Referendum Campaign Broadcast by the Vote Leave Campaign Sunday, 19 June 2016 Channel 4 : 19
ITV : 5
Total : 24
Big Brother Monday, 13 June 2016 Channel 5 13

Please note: On both 14 nd 19 June 2016, A Referendum Campaign Broadcast by the Vote Leave Campaign was broadcast across a number of channels. For completeness, this report contains the number of complaints received across all channels including cases where fewer than 10 complaints were received.

Current Investigations

If Ofcom considers that a broadcast may have breached its codes, it will start an investigation

As of 18 July 2011, the Investigations List will be published fortnightly in the Broadcast and On Demand Bulletin

For more information about how Ofcom assesses complaints and conducts investigations go to

For fairness and privacy complaints go to