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Ofcom: Sky is fit and proper

UK pay TV operator BSkyB has passed regulator Ofcom’s assessment of being fit and proper.

Ofcom, which has an ongoing duty to be satisfied that all broadcast licensees are fit and proper, launched an assessment of Sky in July 2011 following the public debate about parent company News Corp’s roll in the phone hacking scandal.

In reaching its decision, the regulator said that, in principle, any wrongdoing by News Corp’s UK newspaper arm News Group Newspapers (NGN) could be relevant to the fitness and propriety of Sky. However, Ofcom found that “To date, there is no evidence that Sky was directly or indirectly involved in any of the wrongdoing either admitted or alleged to have taken place at News of the World or The Sun”.

Sky has admitted to some instances of email hacking in two cases unrelated to the cases alleged to have taken place at NGN and Ofcom said it was currently considering these issues under the Broadcasting Code.

On James Murdoch, who stood down as chairman of BSkyB in April, Ofcom said his conduct fell short of “the standard to be expected” but added that “we do not find that James Murdoch’s retention as a non-executive director of Sky means that Sky is not fit and proper to hold broadcast licences”.

Sky welcomed the decision, saying that it is “committed to high standards of governance”.

Tags: BSkyB, Ofcom, UK