The APC Code of Practice

In 2009, the Alliance for the Protection of Copyright (APC) published a newly updated Code of Practice to protect those involved in both the submission and receipt of proposals for film, television and radio.

The aim of this revised Code is to encourage the free flow of ideas and ensure that written proposals (including formats, treatments, scripts, outlines, development documents, tender submissions, storylines, artwork and synopses) are treated in a fair and transparent manner. It also outlines dispute procedures for those who feel their copyright may have been infringed.

The APC is made up of Directors UK, BECTU, the Musicians’ Union, The Society of Authors, National Union of Journalists, Women in Film and TV and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain.

The APC Code of Practice was first launched in April 1999. Since then the Code has been referenced within the main broadcasters’ own Code of Practice, and has become recognised best practice within the industry.

The Code aims to protect and give confidence to those submitting proposals, to provide practical guidelines and set out the obligations of those both submitting and receiving them. It was launched with the support of the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5, AETN UK, the Radio Independents Group, S4C and Pact.

In a joint statement back in 2009, Directors UK and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain said: “Creative ideas are the lifeblood of our members’ work. In a competitive marketplace the APC Code offers protection to the vital raw material on which our industry depends: new ideas. We encourage our Members and all creatives and commissioners to study and follow the guidelines in the new Code”.

In 2022, the Code was updated to cover podcasts. Download the latest copy of the Code

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