Ofcom sanctions Loveworld over 5G conspiracy report

Another channel is found to have given airtime to Covid-19 conspiracy theories.

Ofcom has announced it's imposed a sanction on religious channel Loveworld after a news programme and a live sermon included potentially harmful claims about causes of, and treatments for, Covid-19.

Ofcom found that a report on Loveworld News included unsubstantiated claims that 5G was the cause of the pandemic, and that this was the subject of a “global cover-up”.

Ofcom monitoring found the channel had also screened a report during the programme presented hydroxychloroquine as a “cure” for Covid-19, "without acknowledging that its effectiveness and safety as a treatment was clinically unproven, or making clear that it has potentially serious side effects", according the regulator.

Additionally, a sermon broadcast on Your Loveworld also included unsubstantiated claims linking the pandemic to 5G technology; as well as claims which cast serious doubt on the necessity for lockdown measures and the motives behind official health advice on Covid-19, including in relation to vaccination. Ofcom says these views were presented as facts without evidence or challenge, putting them in breach of UK broadcasting rules.

As a result, Ofcom is now going to force Loveworld Limited to broadcast statements of its findings and is also considering whether to impose any further sanction.

Last month, local channel London Live incurred the wrath of Ofcom over the broadcast of an interview that promoted 5G conspiracy theory, and ITV had a close shave with the regulator over comments made by Eamonn Holmes on This Morning.