British Board of Film Classification

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BBFC launches its Annual Report & Accounts 2017

  • 82% more films were classified for cinema in 2017 compared to 2007.

  • Video on demand continues to receive more BBFC age ratings than any other format

  • In 2017 the BBFC gave 378 films a 12A age rating, the most ever at the 12A category

Date 19/07/2018

In 2017 the BBFC age rated 1,048 films for cinema release, representing an 82% growth in films classified compared to 2007. With a total of 378 titles, there were more films with a 12A age rating in 2017 than ever before. However 15 remains the most common age rating with 392 theatrical classifications last year. Every film classified by the BBFC comes with detailed BBFCinsight information to help people make informed viewing choices for themselves and their family. BBFCinsight is available on bbfc.co.uk and the BBFC's free apps for tablet and mobile devices.

Although cinema is as popular as ever, digital content continues to grow, with submissions increasing by 25.3% since 2016, with just under 160,000 minutes of digital content classified in 2017.

David Austin, BBFC Chief Executive, said: "Our aim is to support children and families to make viewing decisions that are right for them whenever, whatever and however they are watching, be it cinema, Blu-ray or DVD, or Video on Demand (VOD). Going forward we will continue to carry out research to ensure that our standards are in line with what people across the UK believe and expect. "In February 2018 the Government designated the BBFC with new responsibilities as the age-verification regulator for online commercial pornography, under Part 3 of the Digital Economy Act 2017. This is due to our acknowledged expertise in assessing and classifying content, including pornographic content, and our longstanding experience of online regulation. The new legislation is an important step in making the internet safer for children."

In addition to providing the latest age rating information on our websites, twitter account and free app, the BBFC continues to publish resources for children, teachers and older learners including a regular podcast, a children's website (www.cbbfc.co.uk), case studies and classroom posters.

In 2017 the BBFC's education team held 137 teaching sessions speaking to over 8,000 people across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland Sessions focussed on BBFC age ratings, our history and our current work including in the online space. The BBFC education and outreach work aims to help children and young people choose well when selecting viewing material online, at home and in the cinema.

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For more information contact Billie Morgan bmorgan@bbfc.co.uk 0207 440 0397 (out of hours: 07908 637 666).

Notes to editors

About the BBFC

The BBFC is an independent, private, not-for-profit company which classifies films, video on all physical formats (DVD and Blu-ray Disc for example) and certain video games, advertisements and trailers. The BBFC also works with a number of on demand services to provide trusted age ratings for video content available for download and streaming online. In addition to these significant roles the BBFC was designated the age-verification regulator under Part 3 of the Digital Economy Act (DEA) in February 2018. While continuing their work as independent regulator, on a voluntary, best-practice basis, of content delivered via the UK’s four mobile networks (EE, O2, Three and Vodafone). The BBFC operates a transparent, trusted classification regime based on years of expertise and published Classification Guidelines. These guidelines are formulated by conducting regular large scale public consultations to ensure that the standards enshrined in its Guidelines reflect public opinion and is accountable to Parliament.

www.bbfc.co.uk

Additional information on Age Verification

  • The BBFC was designated as the age-verification regulator under Part 3 of the Digital Economy Act 2017 on 21 February 2018.
  • Under section 14(1) of the Digital Economy Act 2017, all providers of online commercial pornographic services accessible from the UK will be required to carry age-verification controls to ensure that their content is not normally accessible to children
  • Under section 25 of the Digital Economy Act 2017, the BBFC is required to publish two sets of Guidance: Guidance on Age-verification Arrangements and Guidance on Ancillary Service Providers
  • The BBFC will publish a response to the public consultation on draft Guidance on Age-verification Arrangements and Guidance on Ancillary Service Providers responses, which took place in April 2018, after the finalised guidance is laid in Parliament
  • Read more about the BBFC's role as the age-verification regulator in the age verification FAQ section here

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