Digital Economy Bill - Committee (4th Day) (Continued)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 8:45 pm on 8th February 2017.

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Moved by Lord Puttnam

229ZA: After Clause 84, insert the following new Clause—“Mergers: specified considerations for mergers involving broadcasting media enterprises (1) Section 58 of the Enterprise Act 2002 (specified considerations) is amended as follows.(2) After section (2C) insert—“(2D) The need for those who, as a result of a merger, have increased control of media enterprises (excluding newspaper enterprises) which require a broadcasting licence, under section 3(3) of the Broadcasting Act 1990 or the Broadcasting Act 1996, to be fit and proper to hold such a licence having regard in particular to—(a) the extent of any criminal wrongdoing that has taken place by companies and other organisations under their control; and(b) the extent of any failures of corporate governance and management in such companies and organisations.(2E) The need for there to be, in the governance arrangements of any relevant media enterprise (excluding newspaper enterprises), which provides news services, sufficient safeguards for unrestricted editorial freedom in the provision of full and accurate news services by such media enterprises.(2F) The need to prevent a media enterprise (excluding a newspaper enterprise) from—(a) exercising undue influence over distribution of, and access to, rights, talent and other forms of cultural expression;(b) promoting its own business interests through its editorial outlets, to the detriment of competitors where this is against the wider public interest;(c) exercising undue pressure in the regulatory and political environment, to the detriment of competitors where this is against the wider public interest.”