Watchdog Finds In Favour of Sky Instead of BT over Advertising Complaint
Following a long-standing row with BT, BSKyB has finally emerged victorious today after watchdog Ofcom ruled it has the right to refuse to broadcast BT Sport ads on its sporting channels.
The spat started when BT lodged a complaint in April because Sky Media refused to broadcast a BT Sport TV ad campaign on their network. Ofcom has now ruled that Sky indeed has the right to protect their brand and is not unduly discriminating against its competitor.
Ofcom decided that there is "wide availability" on other commercial channels for BT to target sports fans and that by Sky refusing BT Sport ads on its channels the brand is "pursuing a legitimate commercial interest".
A Sky spokesman commented: "We are pleased that Ofcom has confirmed that we are acting entirely reasonably in declining to advertise a direct competitor on Sky Sports. As we said at the time, BT's demands are a bit like Tesco expecting to advertise inside Sainsbury's."
He also added that it is "disappointing" BT has "again gone down the regulatory road". Meanwhile, another spat is brewing since earlier this week BT launched another complaint with Ofcom over Sky's refusal to wholesale Sky Sports 1 and 2 to YouView.