It’s time to ‘switch the lights on’ to diversity in the UK TV industry.
Diamond (Diversity Analysis Monitoring Data) is an end-to-end process for collecting and reporting diversity data. Diamond creates, for the first time, a common standard for monitoring diversity across all the main broadcasters. From now on, production companies will be asked to collect diversity data from everyone working on a production, both on- and off-screen. This initiative has been developed by the CreativeDiversity Network (CDN), which brings together organisations across the UK television industry including the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky, Pact and Creative Skillset.
TV needs diversity at its very core, not as a box-ticking exercise, but as part of a strategy to reflect audiences, enhance creativity and increase world-class programming. At a time when challenges relating to diversity are growing in prominence, Diamond allows us to answer the key questions “Who’s on TV?” and “Who makes TV?” with greater confidence and precision than ever before. The CDN will publish regular reports based on Diamond data, bringing greater transparency and accountability to the drive for diversity and equality of opportunity in our industry.
What’s different about Diamond?
Diamond does two things. First, it measures the ‘Actual’ diversity of the people working on a programme, both on- and off-screen. And second, it measures how an audience might ‘Perceive’ the diversity of characters and contributors on-screen. Diversity data is captured across six characteristics: Gender, Gender Identity, Age, Ethnicity, Sexual Orientation and Disability. By gathering diversity data on a continuous basis, Diamond will generate more detailed, reliable and comprehensive reports than ever before.
Who will be responsible for Diamond within your organisation?
This will usually be the responsibility of production management. The CDN and the broadcasters have developed a range of resources to help production companies run the process and to keep colleagues and talent informed of how the process works and what they need to do. Companies are being offered face-to-face training sessions, and there are e-learning modules, guidance notes and other support resources available online at www.diamonddiversity.uk.
How is data protected?
As Diamond involves collecting personal information from contributors, it is subject to obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998 and other relevant legislation. Diamond also complies with the broadcasters’ strict security policies, and has been designed to protect individuals’ anonymity. Contributors complete their Diamond declarations themselves, and no-one else can see their data.
What will programme makers have to do?
Diamond diversity monitoring has been designed to be completed as efficiently as possible as part of overall production paperwork. Diamond is integrated with Silvermouse, which production companies may already be using for Programme as Completed paperwork.
A full guide to Diamond, including the methodology for capturing Perceived Diversity data, can be found in the Guidance Notes. Production companies can find further information on using the Diamond-related forms in the Silvermouse Diamond UserGuide (located on the Silvermouse Master Page after logging in) or by contacting the helpdesk on email@example.com.
What does it mean for Producers?
For programmes commissioned from Monday 15th August 2016 (and by arrangement some programmes before that date), producers will input perceived data about the individuals appearing on screen in the programmes into Diamond at the delivery stage. Producers will also encourage those in front of and behind the camera to participate in the gathering of actual data by allowing their emails to be input so that they can be contacted by the Diamond system.
In order to achieve this in accordance with the law, legal representatives from Pact and the broadcasters have agreed wording to be included in all engagement documents – e.g. release forms, contributor agreements, staff contracts and all other agreements for those either appearing in or making a programme.
If you use the Pact precedents, they have been amended to include this wording.
If you have your own agreements, you must include specific wording, which can be downloaded from the Pact Resource library here.
Pact has negotiated an indemnity in respect of Diamond from the broadcasters to producers PROVIDED THAT THIS PRECISE WORDING IS USED in the relevant agreements.