ATVOD Soon to Hand Over VOD Regulation to Ofcom

ATVOD Soon to Hand Over VOD Regulation to Ofcom

LONDON — In just a bit more than a week, ATVOD will be no more.

As announced in October, ATVOD, known formally as the Authority for Television on Demand, will fold its operations into the grips of British chief communications czar, Ofcom, by the end of the year.

Ofcom will begin handling complaints, current ATVOD probes and fee payments at the expiration of ATVOD’s tenure as co-regulator of video-on-demand content starting Dec. 31 at 5 p.m.

Ofcom already has created a new section of its website containing information on Ofcom rules, guidance and procedures for VOD content.  

Three members of ATVOD’s investigations team — Cathy Taylor, Jhaapjeet Chodha and James Storm — will transfer over to Ofcom.

ATVOD was tapped in 2010 to co-regulate VOD content, much of it adult entertainment, with Ofcom.

But U.K.’s chief communications regulator in said that following a review of ATVOD’s role, it decided that “acting as sole regulator for VOD programs is a more effective model for the future than having two separate bodies carrying out this work.”

ATVOD CEO Pete Johnson, in a farewell address today, said that he wished his investigations team well following Ofcom’s “strategic decision to take the relevant functions in-house in light of changes in the market for on-demand program services.”

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have helped ATVOD to discharge its duties so effectively and efficiently since its designation in 2010, including all those who have participated in the Industry Forum and its working parties, but especially the dedicated ATVOD Board and my excellent staff who have worked so hard to deliver excellent service to the public and to service providers,” he said.

“It has been a fascinating five years, and I wish you all the best for the future.”