There are reports today that some radio stations are to become involved in the scandal over premium-rate phone-ins currently giving television so many bad headlines. Several media outlets are reporting that representatives from regulator ICSTIS are to meet with bosses from Virgin Radio and LBC following complaints from listeners.
A Virgin Radio listener told the Mail on Sunday newspaper that he'd called the station's national rate 0870 studio line with a request, only to later discover that presenter Suggs was actually appearing live on ITV at the time and that his radio show was pre-recorded. In a separate case it is reported that ICSTIS are looking into how well stations publicise call costs, following accusations levelled towards Chrysalis-owned London station LBC.
Only last month [link=http://www.radiotoday.co.uk/news.php?extend.1688]we told you[/link] how Emap were having to refund the cost of listeners' text messages to enter the Kiss network's "£10k Mash for Cash" competition after a blunder with the automated SMS reply system.
RadioToday.co.uk understands that there is no requirement for the price to be actively publicised where calls or text messages will cost the member of the public less than 50p. This would include most stations' short-code SMS studio text numbers which generally cost the texter 25p plus their standard network charge. We also understand that ICSTIS last week met with radio operators, including the BBC and GCap Media, to discuss the use of premium-rate services.
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