Fair Practices

Under the Broadcasting Act each public service broadcaster namely RTE and TG4 must prepare a code of fair trading practice setting out principles when commissioning programmes from independent producers.

BAI prepares and issues guidance to the public service broadcasters on the form of the  code of fair trading practice. BAI publishes this guidance for public service broadcasters.  It indicates the code should be sufficient to adopt a response to changing market conditions technological developments and the evolving interest and needs of the audience.

The code is to provide for a means by which the public service broadcaster and an independent producer shall separately negotiate rights other than primary rights, if the public service broadcaster wishes to acquire  such rights and should the independent producer wish to make them available.

In the interest of the transparency, the code shall set out the public service broadcaster principles on approach to negotiation of production funding to be provided by a broadcaster.  Typically a production fee shall be included in the production funding.

Recognising the statutory obligations of the public service broadcaster in relation to public service objects and recognising the legitimate commercial expectations of the PSB and independent producers, the code shall provide for sharing of profits..


The PSB shall set out its code or related document terms of business in relation to commissioning of programmes.  Areas to be addressed include process for submission of commission proposals.

The code  shall commit to the expeditious completion of the contract negotiations between parties.  Typically an independent producer and PSB should expect it all contract negotiations should be concluded at least one month prior to the commencement of the recording principal photography of the commissioned work.

There should be a dispute resolution mechanism in the code;  It should provide for resolution by mediation arbitration as shall be specified, to  ensure that neither  broadcaster nor producer is disadvantaged by the procedure.


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