Section 15: Conflicts of Interest
Other Output Areas
The external activities of BBC editorial staff, reporters and presenters should not undermine the public's perception of the impartiality, integrity or independence of BBC output. External activities should not bring the BBC into disrepute. It is also important that off-air activities do not undermine the on-air role of regular presenters.
The degree to which external activities are constrained will depend on the nature of both the output and the individual's role. Heads of department must judge what is appropriate.
In factual output, including sport, care should be taken about any writing or speaking engagement connected to the subject matter of the programme. There is less concern about expressing views publicly on an unrelated area, for example a person working in science expressing an opinion on arts. Those working on consumer programmes must take particular care not to endorse any product or service which could be covered in the programmes on which they work and they should have no commercial or other links which could appear to influence their BBC work.
In all other areas, including for example entertainment, it is essential that programme makers, other content producers and on-air talent do not undermine their own integrity, and that of their content, by off-air involvement in inappropriate activities or commercial interests. Their off-air activities must not bring the BBC into disrepute.
In some areas, such as specialist music programming, on-air talent may have commercial and personal interests in their area of expertise. In such cases, the relevant division should ensure that appropriate editorial procedures are in place so that there is no conflict of interest with their on-air role. Such procedures must be referred to Editorial Policy.
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