Networks’ Ad Campaign No Solution to Indecency Violations, Say Critics

It’s getting harder and harder these days to find television programs that are suitable for children. Aside from the filth the “big four” networks are producing these days, it seems that almost every other network has started showing:
1. Sexual suggestive content with teens as the characters.
2. Disfunctional families without dads or with dads whose only purpose is comic relief.
3. Commercials for lifestyle enhancement drugs.
4. Reality shows that, for the most part, aren’t reality at all.
5. The use of religious terms and language as swear words.
These are just some of the things that come to mind. The bottom line is that the networks will continue to spew trash until they are hit in their bottom line. They only understand the loss of revenue. Continue to “vote” your morals with your dollars and make sure they (the networks and advertisers) know are doing it.

(AgapePress) – Family-friendly media watchdogs say the television industry is merely trying to dodge its responsibility to police itself and its content. And the head of the FCC says the multi-million-dollar ad campaign just announced by the industry won’t be enough to satisfy his agency’s mandate to patrol the airwaves for indecency.
At their annual convention on Monday, the National Association of Broadcasters heard a pitch from the former head of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) about an upcoming ad campaign designed to inform parents about V-chip technology and television program ratings. “We want to tell parents that they, and they alone, have total power to control every hour of television programming,” said Jack Valenti in announcing the $330 million ad campaign.
Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council has his own translation of Valenti’s statement. The “avalanche” of ads, he says, is designed to persuade parents it is their sole responsibility to monitor what their children watch on TV. “In other words,” says the FRC president, “the MPAA wants to continue to pump out the sewage and make you [parents] responsible for the cleanup.”
“How noble. How empowering for you,” Perkins says tongue-in-cheek. “And how ridiculous.”
The announced ad campaign comes in the wake of a $3.6 million fine recently proposed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) against CBS for what the agency determined to be indecent programming, and the FCC’s decision to uphold another half-million-dollar fine against the network for the infamous “wardrobe malfunction” debacle during the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show. At the same time, the federal agency cited several TV programs — but did not fine the originating networks — for violating the standards for broadcasting indecent language. (See earlier article)
Since the FCC’s announcement in mid-March, the four major networks — ABC, CBS, NBC, and Fox — have sued the FCC over the indecency rulings. The networks claim the FCC “overstepped its authority” in making rulings that are “unconstitutional and inconsistent with … previous FCC decisions.”
Some media watchdogs claim that lawsuit is nothing more than an attempt by the networks to obtain the right to indiscriminately broadcast foul language in violation of current law. One of those who feels that way is L. Brent Bozell of the Parents Television Council (PTC) — and he has a similar response to the ad campaign being promoted by Valenti and the MPAA. Bozell says his group’s research has shown that the V-chip and the ratings system — the core elements promoted by the ad campaign — have failed.
“We have found that most television programs airing foul language, violence, and inappropriate sexual dialogue do not use the appropriate descriptors that would warn parents about the presence of offensive content,” the PTC president notes. “Without accurate descriptors, the V-chip fails — and thus, the ratings system is rendered meaningless.”
According to Bozell, the only solution is for the industry to “clean up its act,” rather than to try to make the public more aware of technology and ratings that have been proven to be ineffective. The ad campaign, he asserts, will not solve the problem.
“They’re spending $300 million to defend themselves against their wretched excesses,” he says. “Why don’t they just stop airing their wretched excess?”
Someone else agrees with Bozell’s assessment of the multi-million-dollar advertising blitz — and that someone is Kevin Martin, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. “I’m not sure that’s the complete answer,” Martin said of the campaign Tuesday in Las Vegas. He noted that live sports programming, such as the Super Bowl, is among the type of programs not rated.
In addition, Reuters reports, Martin observed that his agency’s research indicates that upwards of 40 percent of the TV sets in the U.S. do not have V-chips or other blocking technology. He believes that other initiatives — such as family-tier options or “a la carte” offerings by cable companies — would give consumers more choice. Consequently, parents would have more control over what they allow into their homes.

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