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Last Updated: Monday, 27 November 2006, 14:05 GMT
C4 cancels live Big Brother final
Pete Bennett
Pete Bennett became the winner of the seventh series in August
Channel 4's Big Brother final will no longer be shown live because contestants on this year's show broke rules on swearing before the watershed.

The move comes after broadcasting watchdog Ofcom upheld two complaints against Channel 4 over three separate incidents of bad language on the show.

Ofcom noted that 14% of the 6.4 million viewers on the night were children.

Channel 4 said it had undertaken "a serious review", and next year's final would be shown on a time delay.

However, the broadcaster defended its decision to broadcast this year's show live.

'Surprising' decision

Jayne Kitt
A separate complaint regarding Jayne Kitt was resolved
In a submission to Ofcom, it said the finalists did not pose a "significant risk", and that viewers expected to see their votes tallied in real time.

When contestants Nikki Grahame and Aisleyne Horgan-Wallace did break the rules, it continued, the production team missed the incidents because of the high level of noise from crowds attending the final.

Once it became clear what had happened, however, an apology was made.

Ofcom said that, while it recognised the efforts Channel 4 had made to comply with broadcasting regulations, it was "surprising" that the channel had decided not to use a delay.

"While we accept that certain housemates may not pose a significant risk," it said, "the eviction of housemates raises tension and the possibility of extreme reactions".

Meanwhile, three complaints about swearing on the live streaming of Big Brother on the digital channel E4 were resolved.

Masked with birdsong

In the incident, one of the housemates - Jayne Kitt - was heard to use two four-letter swear words before the watershed.

Channel 4 said the "unprecedented situation" had occurred while editors changed shift, and blamed new, more sensitive microphones for the incident.

While the breach was investigated, it said, all of Kitt's conversations were masked with birdsong.

Following the investigation, a new technical system was installed and a team of dedicated "output monitors" was appointed.

Ofcom said the broadcaster had "regularly demonstrated that it is aware of its responsibilities" and, in light of the changes it introduced, the matter could be considered resolved.

Big Brother auditions go online
22 Nov 06 |  Entertainment
Pete Bennett seizes Brother title
18 Aug 06 |  Entertainment
Channel 4 cleared of BB concerns
18 Sep 06 |  Entertainment
Big Brother contest 'broke rules'
12 Sep 06 |  Entertainment
Jayne Kitt voted off Big Brother
21 Jul 06 |  Entertainment
In Pictures: Big Brother final
18 Aug 06 |  In Pictures

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