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Ofcom says it does not investigate diversity after 24,500 complaints



Broadcasting watchdog Ofcom will not investigate the Diversitys routine on Britains Got Talent, saying it did not view the performance as racist.

The regulator said the main message of the routine, featuring a white performer dressed as an American cop and kneeling above Ashley Banjo, was one of social cohesion and unity.

Ofcom received around 24,500 complaints about the program, almost a decade high.

He concluded that the dance, which he said was symbolic of recent world events, did not raise questions that warranted investigation under its broadcast rules.

A spokesperson for the regulator said: We have carefully examined a large number of complaints about this artistic routine, an area where free speech is particularly important.

Diversity’s performances referred to difficult and potentially controversial topics and, in our opinion, its central message was a call for social cohesion and unity.

All of the performers’ depictions of violence were highly stylized and symbolic of recent world events, and there was no explicit reference to any particular political organization, but rather a message that black lives matter.

Viewers complained that the themes of violence and racism were unsuitable for family viewing, that he expressed support for the political organization Black Lives Matter, and that it was racist towards whites.

They also complained that it negatively portrayed white police officers and encouraged violence against police.

The watchdog also received a number of messages supporting the performance.

He said the program did not contain any racist, violent or inappropriate content.

The content was clearly an artistic expression representing diversity

response to the events of 2020, he said.

He was referring to difficult and potentially controversial topics such as police brutality and racial inequality.

But the message of social cohesion was also reflected in the images on the video wall towards the end of the performance, such as those of children of different ethnicities holding hands.

We did not consider the show to be racist.

The depictions of the encounters between anti-racism protests and the police in the show were limited and symbolic in nature, he said, and in no way condone or valued violent behavior.

It did not explicitly mention or support any particular political goal of the Black Lives Matter movement, but conveyed the message that black lives matter, Ofcom said.

The performance echoed the murder of unarmed black man George Floyd, while other dancers performed with police riot shields.

In a video post to Instagram, Banjo previously said that while the headlines were about complaints and negativity, negativity was in the minority.

The positive response has been enormous.

Thank you very much to everyone who has supported, shown love and supported what we have done.

Banjo, who is on the show for Simon Cowell as he recovers from his electric bike accident, added: We stand by every decision we made with this performance I’m proud of.

ITV said it supports the decision to air the show.

It’s set to become the most criticized TV moment of the decade, around 25,327 were filmed in 2018 about Celebrity Big Brother when ex-Emmerdale actress Roxanne Pallett claimed she had been assaulted by her roommate Ryan Thomas.

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