Annual data collection for Ofcom television licensees
You must supply two data sets by Thursday 31st March 2016
Ofcom’s annual data collection of financial and hours data for the calendar year 2015 is now under way.
You must complete two forms for each TV licence you hold:
1) A Transmission and Revenue return (T&R) covering the calendar year 2015 for hours of output, programming costs and revenues; and
2) An AVMS (formerly TVWF) return, covering the European hours of programming broadcast by the channel.
There are exemptions
Exemptions from one or both of these submissions are available only in the following cases:
1) If your licence was not broadcasting (on air) at all during 2015, then you must formally notify us of this via this email address: email@example.com.
The email should include:
- your organisation’s name
- the exempted channel(s) name
- the exempted channel(s) licence number(s)
If Ofcom receives a notification to this effect then you will not be required to submit a T&R or an AVMS return this year.
2) If your licence was broadcasting content but did not generate any revenue during 2015 you must still complete a T&R return specifying the number of hours you were on air and your production costs. In the comments box, you should also indicate that you did not generate any revenue during 2015 so that it is clear to see why there are no figures in the revenue fields.
3) If your licence was broadcasting, but its audience share was less than 0.2% for the whole of 2015, you are exempt from AVMS, but you must still complete a T&R return. To claim an AVMS exemption, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The email should include:
- your organisation’s name
- the relevant channel(s) name
- the relevant channel(s) licence number(s)
- audience share (expressed as a percentage (%) of viewer hours)
- the source of the audience share data.
4) You are also exempt from AVMS returns, but you must still complete a T&R return, if your channel has one or more of the following characteristics:
- not received by viewers in the European Union; or
- not broadcast in a language of the European Union; or
- not part of a national network, being only for local/regional audiences (this includes L-DTPS licences);
- sports event programming
- teletext services or
The figure below summarises the actions you must take.
Please note: these exemptions only apply to the annual transmission and revenue returns and/or AVMS returns. You are still required under conditions of your licence to provide Ofcom with any other information we may request throughout the course of the year. If you are unsure whether these exemptions cover a request made by Ofcom, please contact the team or individual making the request to obtain clarification on this matter.
Please refer to the step-by-step guide below for help in completing the T&R and AVMS forms.
These guidance notes include new information on how to complete your return.
Product placement revenue data for 2015
Ofcom requires data on all the net revenue that licensed broadcasters and the producers they commission have generated as a result of product placement deals in relation to programming on the licensee’s service(s).
The data should include revenue raised as a result of product placement arrangements made directly between the broadcaster and product placers, as well as those arrangements involving programme producers and/or other third parties (net of any production and/or agency fees).
The data should be included as ‘other revenue’ in the T&R returns, as well as being submitted to Ofcom via email at email@example.com. The email should include:
- the value of the product placement revenue;
- your organisation’s name; and
- the licences through which the revenue was raised.
Where arrangements involved programme producers, please provide: total revenue; the broadcaster’s share (including any measurement costs), and the producer’s share.
Broadcasters are required to provide product placement revenue information under powers set out in the Broadcasting Act 1990.
The relevant definition of product placement and the associated rules are set out in full in Section Nine of the Ofcom Broadcasting Code:
You can submit the data any time from now but must complete your data submission no later than Thursday 31st March 2016.
If audited data for 2015 is not available by then you should submit estimates by the deadline and, if necessary, restate the data once audited figures are available; restatements must be made by 31 May 2016.
Accessing the Market Intelligence Database (MID)
Both the T&R and AVMS submissions should be made using Ofcom’s online Market Intelligence Database (MID) via the link below:
By now you should have received an email requesting the data, which also contains your MID username. If you are a new user, you should also have received your set-up password via email. If you are an existing user your password may have expired and you will be prompted to change it when you next log in.
If you have not received a MID password, or if a new person will be handling the data, further assistance can be given by the MID administrator, who can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also use this email address if you cannot resolve any other queries with our step-by-step guide.
We communicate with all licensees using email. If you would prefer to correspond instead by letter please write to Ofcom Market Intelligence team, 2nd Floor, 2a Southwark Bridge Road, London SE1 9HA, stating your name, organisational name and your licence numbers.
How we use the data
We use the information we collect from you and other broadcasters for a number of purposes including the calculation of licence fees, assessing your obligation to offer access services (subtitling, signing and audio description) and to ensure compliance with European legislation and industry monitoring.
In addition, Ofcom is required under Section 358 of the Communications Act 2003 to carry out a review of the provision of broadcasting services and to publish an annual factual and statistical report of the broadcast industries and the state of the market in which broadcasting services are provided (Ofcom's Communications Market Report).
Therefore, and in accordance with section 393(2) of the Communications Act, we expect to include in our Communications Market Report all relevant data that relate to the areas which Ofcom is obliged to consider under section 358(3) when carrying out its review. Financial data remain confidential and, if published, are aggregated to ensure anonymity.
Condition of your licence
As you may be aware, it is a condition of your broadcasting licence to "furnish to Ofcom in such a manner and at such times as Ofcom may reasonably require such documents, accounts, returns, estimates, reports, notices or other information as Ofcom may require for the purpose of exercising the functions assigned to it by or under the 1990 Act, the 1996 Act or the Communications Act."
Failure to provide the data requested in the specified time could result in a fine or other sanctions being imposed, including revocation of your licence.