Ofcom Denies Privacy Claim Over Blowjob Shown on TV

Apr 3, 2015 12:08 PM PST

LONDON — U.K. communications regulator Ofcom has denied a claim made by a woman who said she was a victim of an “unwarranted infringement of privacy” after a TV station broadcasted a video of her giving a man a blowjob in an elevator while she was drunk.

In its decision made last month, Ofcom ruled that the show, “CCTV: Caught on Camera — Lift Watching,” did not break any privacy rules because producers blurred the pair’s faces to hide their identities and that the woman had no expectation of privacy giving fellatio in a public place.

The woman giving the blowjob, however, said that people still knew who she was from the Channel 4 broadcast, and that the stress from the broadcast had caused her to go into premature labor.

Channel 4 officials said in testimony that the program, filmed in Southampton’s 19 council-owned tower blocks, offers videotaped evidence of all sorts of “anti-social behavior,” including footage of drug deals, graffiti artists and people urinating in elevators, as well as sex acts.

In its decision, an Ofcom panel ruled in favor of Channel 4, deciding that the public interest in “anti-social behavior” outweighed the expectation for privacy for the woman, known as Ms. K in Ofcom filings.

“Ofcom considered that, in the circumstances of this case, the broadcaster’s right to freedom of expression and the public interest outweighed Ms. K’s limited expectation of privacy in relation to the broadcast of CCTV footage of her in the program,” Ofcom said in its decision. “Ofcom therefore concluded that there was no unwarranted infringement of Ms. K’s privacy in the program as broadcast.”

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