Privacy and Factual Entertainment


In this article

  1. Editorial Guidelines Issues
  2. Summary of Main Points

Last updated: October 2010


Editorial Guidelines Issues

This guidance note should be considered in conjunction with the following Editorial Guidelines:


Summary of Main Points

  • Set ups and stunts that combine investigation with factual entertainment should be editorially justified by the wrongdoing or other behaviour they expose - not simply for entertainment.


  • The factual entertainment approach to investigative journalism needs to be considered on a case by case basis; the fact a particular technique has been utilised on one programme does not mean it will necessarily be appropriate for another.


  • Production teams should keep in mind and work within the Editorial Guidelines on doorstepping when using set-ups as a means of getting answers to allegations of wrongdoing.


  • Production teams should keep in mind the laws relating to trespass, and normally leave private land or property when asked to do by the legal occupier.


  • If it is intended to secretly film a set-up or stunt and it is unlikely the subject of the filming would give retrospective consent, the secret filming should be justified by the public interest it serves.


  • Any deception should be in proportion to the wrongdoing or other behaviour under scrutiny and should not be solely for entertainment.


Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.