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 Extract Lascivious camera shots...

Vivienne Pattison interviewed about 50 years of Mary Whitehouse


Link Here 14th December 2014
mediawatch banner logo Vivienne Pattison of Mediawatch-UK was asked Would you say things have got better or worse over those years? Pattison replied:

Well it's very easy to have a knee-jerk reaction and think everything has got so much worse, but that really isn't the case. I'm happy that we see a lot less racism and a lot less sexism on television today and I think that that has been a positive thing. But on the other hand I think we're seeing an awful lot more portrayals of violence, particularly sexual violence, which I think is incredibly worrying - and we're also seeing it used almost as a titillation, you know: lascivious camera shots on lots of violent action and violent footage. I don't think that that has been a positive development and I think that television and a lot of the programmes on it have become increasingly sexualised, which we're now beginning to learn, and we're still in the foothills here, but it's really quite damaging for children growing up with these images around them. So tempting though it is to say, No, everything's worse - some things are a lot better and some things really are not.

...Read the full interview

 

 Offsite Article: Getting Old...


Link Here 5th December 2014
Personal Services Special Julie Walters Julie Walters says Mary Whitehouse was right to try to clean up TV after all

See article from dailymail.co.uk

 

  The Daily Mail Recommends Mockingjay...

With the support of a couple of trivial sound bites from Mediawatch-UK and SaferMedia


Link Here 11th November 2014
mockingjay The Daily Mail as been heaping praise on Hunger Games: Mockingjay . The paper gushes:

Showing public executions, corpses being devoured by wild animals and the bombing of a hospital, it's not exactly your typical children's film. But the latest instalment of The Hunger Games phenomenon has been handed a 12A classification -- meaning it can be watched by under-12s as long as they are accompanied by an adult.

As a glamorous Jennifer Lawrence took to the red carpet for the film's London premiere last night, critics (Well just Medaiwatch-UK and SaferMedia actually) questioned whether the BBFC's decision was appropriate, warning that the graphic scenes in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay -- Part 1 could normalise violence and traumatise children.

While this instalment contains fewer acts of violence than the first two films, the scenes of death and destruction that it does have are some of the most disturbing in the franchise -- including the aftermath of a firebomb with heaps of corpses twisted among each other. Protesters are also shown being hooded, forced to their knees and shot in the head.

Pippa Smith of the Safer Media campaign said:

These are not things you would want children to see. It normalises violence.

Vivienne Pattison of Mediawatch UK added:

There's nothing to stop you taking a four-year-old to see it. I think it's really worrying that films which, several years ago, would have been a 15 are now being given lower ratings.

...Meanwhile...

Whilst the Daily Mail is conjuring up a bit of commercially advantageous 'outrage' about the leniency of the BBFC, others are questioning whether the BBFC isn't perhaps a little overly cautious about an 18 certificate for the gay film Gerontophilia

See review from  biggaypictureshow.com

Gerontophilia DVD Katie Boland Oct Gerontophilia has been described by some as the most controversial film ever made by director Bruce La Bruce. That's quite impressive for a filmmaker whose previous films have mixed Neo Nazis and gay porn, and zombies and gay porn. There's not any gay porn at all in this one, so why has it courted controversy? Well it's purely because it's about one of the last taboos -- relationships with a massive age difference.

To be honest I was surprised that in the UK the BBFC gave it an 18 certificate along with the advisory that it contains strong sex (which was also put on the DVD cover). It doesn't contain strong sex at all -- which for a Bruce La Bruce movie is the perhaps most shocking thing about the film -- it just has a guy briefly masturbating under his clothes and the sight of a naked 80-year-old. However because the guy is touching himself because there's a naked 80-year-old, that apparently equates to strong sex. Normally the BBFC isn't as prudish about these things as its US counterpart is, but I can't help but feel that a bit of disgust crept in here that didn't look at the actual content.

 

  Nobody gives a fuck...

Chief TV censor explains to parliamentary committee that TV viewers are no longer wound up by strong language


Link Here 8th November 2014
home affairs committee Ed Richards, chief executive of the TV censor Ofcom was called to give evidence to the Commons culture, media and sport committee. He outlined findings published earlier this year by Ofcom saying that TV viewers have become more tolerant of violence and swearing. But that sexist or racist language of the 1970s is far less acceptable than it once was.

Richards, who is about to stand down after 11 years in the job, told MPs there has been a big change in tolerance levels in the past few decades. According to the Ofcom's latest research, published in July, only 35% of viewers think there is too much violence on TV, down from 55% in 2008. Just 35% think there is too much swearing, down from 53% six years ago, while 26% believe there is too much sex, a slight rise from 25%. Richards told MPs:

People are more tolerant of a degree of violence than they were. They are much more tolerant of certain forms of swearing than they were. There are still some words, very few to be honest, but still some words which are off limits or only in certain circumstances.

They are much less tolerant, interestingly enough, of language which is regarded as discriminatory or unfair or unjust towards people. That's a big change if you think of the Seventies and some of the programmes which went out then. The public just do not want to see that any more.

One of the MPs who quizzed Mr Richards, former Labour Culture Secretary Ben Bradshaw, said he felt UK broadcasters are now too intolerant of nudity while being willing to accept violence and sex on screen. However, Richards denied that British television has become more prudish about nudity and was importing American values and morality .

Vivienne Pattison, the director of moralist campaign group Mediawatch-UK, said that if it was true that viewers were less concerned by bad language but ludicrously claimed it was simply because they had become desensitised to it.

What she really means is that as viewers experience material, they are better able to come to their own conclusions and put it all in perspective. And the more they are given chance to have their own reasoned opinions, the less likely they are to agree with Pattison's simplistic nonsense.

 

  Everybody's Offended...

Media-watch commission survey finding that everybody has been offended by something on pre-watershed TV


Link Here 19th October 2014

mediawatch banner logo A moralist campaign set up by Catholic campaigner Mary Whitehouse has claims that the public believes TV producers have crossed the line by allowing increasingly inappropriate content to be aired.

Of the 2,009 people questioned in the survey by Atomik Research on behalf of Mediawatch-UK, 100% said they had viewed offensive content before the watershed.

The research received the highest percentage of complaints about sexual activity (47%) followed by bad language (38%), violence (36%) and inappropriate adult issues such as drug use and gambling (34%). However, despite each person confessing they had concerns about unsuitable content, only 26% had complained to the TV censor Ofcom.

Actually 26% of people complaining to Ofcom is a massive proportion of people. Ofcom only get handfuls of complaints, so the 26% of people rather suggests that the Mediawatch-UK survey was hardly a random sample.

Vivienne Pattison, Director of Mediawatch-UK, claimed:

OFCOM's failure to regulate adequately in the past has led to what the regulator itself described as being 'at the very margin of acceptability' to become mainstream.

Is it then any wonder that people are not making their views known about inappropriate broadcasts because they don't think anything will come of complaining.

The survey was commissioned to mark the 50th anniversary of Mediawatch-UK.

 

  Mary Whitehouse: Was she right?...

Celebrating 50 years of morality campaigning and sliding down the slippery slope. You'd think we would have hit the bottom by now. But no, life goes on pretty much as normal


Link Here 18th October 2014
mary whiteouse was she right An image of the late Mary Whitehouse, scourge of TV's moral turpitude, was projected onto the side of BBC Broadcasting House in London earlier this week to mark the 50th anniversary of Mediawatch-UK (formerly the National Viewers' and Listeners' Association).

The Guardian's Media Monkey is not quite sure what Whitehouse would have made of the anniversary being marked with a PR stunt, but there you go.

 

  Oh dear! Parents appreciate the choice to make up their own minds...

Mediawatch-UK and Safer Media whinge at the popularity and consequential profitability of cinema films with a 12A rating


Link Here 23rd July 2014
12a large The BBFC Annual Report for 2013 highlighted that a record 321 cinema films were given a 12A rating last year, up a third from 234 the previous year. The rating means children aged 12 and over can see a film at the cinema unaccompanied, and those under this age can also view the film with an adult.

Of course the clear popularity of this rating with parents does not sit well with moralist campaigners who ludicrously try spin popularity and profitability as something sinful and wrong.

Miranda Suit, co-founder of Safer Media, a christian campaign group, said she always suspected that when the 12A category was introduced it would benefit the film industry far more than parents or children, and the record numbers of 12As in 2013 appears to confirm this. She spewed:

12As are a gift to the industry -- allowing a whole extra group of children, the under 12s, to provide a new revenue stream, as long as they are with an adult.

Meanwhile the BBFC are happy to allow surprisingly explicit violence and sadism in 12As, as evidenced by the complaints made about 12A Jack Reacher.

Explicit sex is also an issue, and the BBFC have actually relaxed controls on bad language in this category.

The BBFC need to provide much better protection -- our children are far too precious to justify weighting regulation in favour of the industry rather than young people's wellbeing.

Vivienne Pattison, of moralist campaign group Mediawatch UK, said the findings and changes only highlight how children are being used to turn films into lucrative business ventures. She spewed:

The increase would appear to underline the fact that producers want to get that crucial 12A rating because it means children can go and leads to a substantial increase in the potential audience.

You can sell a lot more lunchboxes and duvet covers linked to the film if under 12s have been allowed to see it.

The problem arises at the top end of the classification, when producers make a snip here and a cut there to a film so they can get the 12A rating. It does not always mean the film is suitable for children.

 

 Comment: Stunted emotional growth...

Mediawatch-UK Recommends BBC's Happy Valley


Link Here 25th May 2014
bbc happy valley A handful of viewers have rapped some sequences in the post-watershed BBC programme Happy Valley .

In particular a brutal beating of a police sergeant played by Sarah Lancashire. As Episode Four ended, she collapsed covered in blood.

Vivienne Pattison, of Mediawatch-UK whinged:

This kind of graphic violence dehumanises us. Studies have shown watching it can stunt your emotional growth.

The BBC has received at least 15 complaints about the episode, shown between 9 and 10pm. A BBC spokesman said:

It was broadcast in a post-watershed slot and was clearly signposted with an on-air announcement before the episode started.

Offsite Comment: The Childish Daily Mail

25th May 2014. See  Happy Valley writer: I don't have to apologise for show's violence from  theguardian.com

Sally Wainwright, creator of the hit BBC1 drama, defends the depiction of brutality and says storylines were carefully considered

In a robust response, Wainwright told the Observer she was saddened that the Mail had picked up on the attack on Cawood -- played by Bafta-winner Sarah Lancashire -- and a previous incident when a young woman police officer was crushed to death and had tried to make a thing of it, when shows like Game of Thrones have so much gratuitous violence against lots of people . Wainwright said:

This is a quality, well-written drama. I think it is childish [of the Daily Mail]. I think it has backfired on them. Judging by the amount of email, texts, tweets I've had, I don't think anyone is asking me to apologise. I'm sorry if some people found it too much. You can always turn the telly off.

...Read the full article .

 

  Wrong Type of Nonsense...

Complaints about a TV advert for scientology


Link Here 15th May 2014
scientology tv advert video ITV has sparked a little 'outrage' of a few viewers for airing an advert for the Church of Scientology in a prime-time slot.

The broadcaster was accused of allowing the controversial religious cult to target vulnerable people after it showed its advert following Coronation Street .

It sparked 24 complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), which responded that the advert does not breach any of its regulations.

Depicting a montage of smiling people and imposing buildings with a voiceover, thet advert encourages viewers to Imagine science and religion connecting . It ends with the statement: Imagine everything you have ever imagined is possible as the Scientology website is displayed on the screen.

The director of Mediawatch-UK Vivienne Pattison said that although she understands the concerns people have about the Scientology advert, there is little that can be done to stop it. She said:

There aren't actually any rules saying you can or can't advertise religion, which is how they have managed to get away with it.

 

  Mediawatch-UK Recommends...

Marriage at First Sight on Channel 4


Link Here 9th May 2014
married at first sight australia Channel 4 describes its new programme as follows:

The vast majority of us are brought up to assume that love is something that just happens, but there are now 15.7 million single adults in the UK and marriage is at an all-time low (2011 census, office of national stats). Have marriage and monogamy had their day. Have we forgotten how to fall in love?

Channel 4 have acquired the rights to develop Danish format Married at First Sight for a UK audience; this ground-breaking social experiment will see three couples matched by man and machine according to scientific and sociological criteria and will be produced by CPL.

Chosen from an initial pool of over 200 applicants, six single people, each seeking long-term love, will enter into a legally-binding marriage with a complete stranger - meeting for the very first time at their own wedding where they'll declare I do in front of family and friends.

Each of the single participants will be carefully matched by a panel of experts in the fields of psychology, psychotherapy, social & evolutionary anthropology and theology in the hope that their combined professional experience can create a perfect match.

Cameras will follow the couples for the first six weeks of their relationship as they share their daily lives with a stranger who could potentially become their soul mate, but practicalities aside, Married at First Sight ultimately seeks to answer two questions. Can science produce a successful relationship and can the act of marriage itself help create a psychological bond that leads to true and enduring love?

And of course Vivienne Pattison, the Director of Mediawatch-UK was keen to support the hype. She said of the show:

It makes marriage look stupid. Channel 4 is trumpeting this as a social experiment but it isn't. It's just after ratings.

Family breakdown costs the UK billions each year. This is irresponsible

 

  So what will they do when the soaps are rated 12?...

Reg Bailey calls for UK TV programmes to be rated as per film classifications


Link Here 5th May 2014
Coronation Street Best 2000 2009 DVD Reg Bailey, censorship campaigner and chief executive of the Mothers' Union, who 'advises' Downing Street on the sexualisation and commercialisation of childhood, has called for the introduction of a cinema-style ratings system for all broadcast content.

He insisted the rise in time-shifted viewing of TV -- on the internet or other catch-up services -- meant the old 9pm watershed could not survive in its current form:

If you go to the age-rated system -- 12, 12A, PG -- it is simpler and has a high trust level.

Figures show ten% of all television viewing is now time-shifted rather than live.

Vivienne Pattison, director of campaign group Mediawatch-UK, said:

I am the parent of a seven-year-old who has no concept of linear television. He has no idea of not watching when he wants to watch. If you have a young teenage audience at 6.30pm and then you put out a version with extra spicy bits later at night -- well, who do you think that is aimed at?

She suggested curious youngsters were using catch-up services to watch shows as Channel 4's The Joy of Teen Sex and My Daughter the Teenage Nudist, as well as the post-watershed spin-off of the soap opera Hollyoaks.

Tony Close, director of content standards at Ofcom, said:

The TV watershed is an important way to protect children. We recognise the growth of on-demand TV viewing poses new challenges. We are working with government to ensure that children remain protected.

A spokesman for the Culture, Media and Sport department said:

More needs to be done to ensure safety measures and tools that prevent children watching post-watershed programmes, such as [parental] locks and Pin protection, are more widely used. We will keep progress under close review and if necessary consider the case for legislation to ensure that audiences are protected to the level they choose.

 

  Normalising Whingeing...

The Daily Mail, Mediawatch-UK and SaferMedia all recommend Games of Thrones, Season 4


Link Here 11th April 2014
Game Thrones Season 1 3 DVD The Daily Mail has praised the first of episode of Season 4 of Game of Thrones:

A prince strips a posing group of prostitutes naked one by one as he selects a companion for the night. It sounds like a scene from a porn film, but this was the latest episode of the epic fantasy drama Game of Thrones, based on the novels of George R R Martin.

Other scenes in the episode, which followed the Stark family coming to terms with the killing of their relatives at the end of season three, featured an attempted rape and graphic disembowelment.

Some 700,000 tuned in to watch its long-awaited return on Sky Atlantic at 9pm. The prostitute scene came ten minutes from the start, 10 minutes after the TV watershed.

Miranda Suit, of the religious morality campaign, Safermedia, said:

What are [young girls] learning from some of these storylines?  That what most men want is their body and handing it over is one of the easiest ways to get their attention. This does a great disservice to both men and women.

Pippa Smith of Safermedia asked:

Extreme sadistic violence and sexual violence involving harpooning prostitutes and what appears to be attempted rape served up for television entertainment?

That this series is so popular is deeply troubling and no doubt it is particularly popular with young boys and teens many of whom who are already becoming desensitised, more aggressive and lacking in empathy from the violence in films and video games and online porn.

Vivienne Pattinson of Mediatwatch-UK agreed that while the quality of the scenery was fabulous and the acting brilliant , there was a worrying undertone of violence being acceptable. She said:

It's normalising this violence and unhealthy relationships, or whatever it is. It's giving it a context and that is worrying.

Megan MacLeod of Sky Atlantic said:

'HBO's Game of Thrones sits perfectly alongside Sky Atlantic's range of bold content which we know our customers enjoy.

 

 Updated: Kylie Minogue's Sexercise...

As recommended by the Daily Mail, Mediawatch-UK and Safermedia


Link Here 24th March 2014
kylie minogue sexercise video Hundreds of music fans have apparently taken to social networking websites to criticise the Kylie Minogue after she posted raunchy footage on YouTube to accompany her latest single, Sexercise .

A few fans condemned the video, which shows her writhing on gym equipment, as soft porn , and said her outfit of a white leotard and stiletto heels was inappropriate. Others argued she was using sex to mask the mediocre quality of the music.

However the whingers are a tiny minority of the 917,000 viewers that have watched the video so far.

Vivienne Pattinson, of campaign group Mediawatch-UK, said:

It's just reinforcing the idea that your worth is defined by your hotness rather than anything else you have to offer, and that can be really damaging for the self-esteem of young girls.

Pippa Smith, of the religious moral campaign group Safermedia, said:

This latest release is very disappointing as she will understand perfectly well that she is a role model for young girls and children.

Update: An even more ludicrous attempt to conjure up some 'outrage'

24th March 2013. See  article from  dailymail.co.uk

The Daily Mail tries to hype up Kylie's pretty sexy but modest dress:

Daily Mail logo Just days after attracting controversy with a very racy music video, Kylie Minogue has flaunted her body in a red, dominatrix-style bandage dress while performing at London nightclub G-A-Y.

The 45-year-old showed off her famous figure on Saturday night in a shiny, tight red dress, which she teamed with red peep-toe stilettos for her performance at the gay bar.

 

 Comment: A Bafta for the Makers of Grand Theft Auto...

And the fine achievement is greeted with nothing but miserable whinges from the likes of Mediawatch-UK


Link Here 17th March 2014  full story: Grand Theft Auto...Grand Theft Auto brings out the nutters
Grand Theft Auto Xbox 360 The British Academy of Film and Television Arts has honoured Rockstar Games, the company behind the Grand Theft Auto series, with its illustrious Fellowship award. They will now be presented with the prize for their revolutionary approach to games . They have also been commended for bringing the medium to the masses .

But this fine achievement is met only with a barrage of whinges from moral campaigners, courtesy of course, the Daily Mail.

Pippa Smith of Safer Media, a religious campaigner against violence, sex and bad language in the media, said:

We have had a lot of concerns about Grand Theft Auto, and we would not agree with this at all. A Bafta Fellowship is a very prestigious award and it is giving out a very dangerous message.

Grand Theft Auto is obviously hugely popular and makes an awful lot of money, so as far as the gaming industry is concerned, it is a big money spinner.

But it is horrifying that they are being recognised in this way. We know for sure that people are affected by the violence in these games, and in this particular case players are even encouraged to kill prostitutes.

Vivienne Pattinson, director of lobby group Mediawatch UK, said:

My biggest criticism is that we know that children who are a lot younger than the age limit of these games are playing them. Gaming companies have a very important role to play in making sure that under-age children are not exposed to these games.

They are marketed in places where children are likely to see them, on the sides of school buses for example, and for Bafta to be giving them an award at a time when there is still a lot of work to be done in protecting children from this kind of violence is wrong.

I can appreciate the quality of these games are good. But we cannot just hold our hands up and say that the content doesn't matter.

Offsite Comment: GTA, The Baftas And How The Daily Mail Make Morons Like Mediawatch-uk Look Even More Ridiculous

the bothersome blog logo 17th March 2013. See comment from bothersomeblogger.wordpress.com

  So the Daily Mail is whipping up outrage over the Grand Theft Auto games being given a BAFTA award. This is a classic example of the Daily Mail trying to make outrage over absoloutly nothing. To demonstrate that there outrage and controversy they've wheeled out two of their favourite rent-a-quotes, Pippa Smith from Safermedia and Vivienne Pattison from Mediawatch-uk.

...Read the full comment

 

 Offsite Article: Never Heard of Safe Search...


Link Here 13th February 2014  full story: David Cameron's Internet Porn Ban...Attempting to ban everything on the internet
mediawatch banner logo Mediawatch-UK persuades the Telegraph to publish a whinge about porn on Google Images

See article from telegraph.co.uk

 

 Update: Recommending Beyonce...

The Daily Mail awards Beyonce its highest accolade, 'vile'


Link Here 29th January 2014
beyonce grammys video The Daily Mail has lauded Boyonce's performance at the Grammy's in glowing terms:

Is this really what little girls should aspire to, Beyonce'? Parents attack vile display at Grammys

Singer performed provocative routine at Grammy Awards last night Danced and writhed around on stage in a barely-there leotard Grinded up against her husband Jay-Z who joined her for act. At one point, the mother-of-one straddled a chair and was seen running her hands up and down her thighs in a suggestive manner before leaning back to drape herself seductively over her seat.

Margaret Morrissey, of Parents Outloud, said:

It is time Beyonce realised she is offending every decent person in this country who I hope in future once they hear her name will switch off their TV.'

Pippa Smith, of SaferMedia, said:

There is something rotten at the heart of this so-called "music" industry when young women celebrities and now a husband and wife start to behave in such an obscenely sexual manner at events popular with all ages. They are doing enormous harm to children's perception of what is normal behaviour.

Vivienne Pattison, of Mediawatch-UK, said:

In this footage Beyonce is wearing a really skimpy outfit but Jay-Z is not. If girls and women are seen exclusively as sexual beings rather than as complicated people with many interests, talents and identities, boys and men may have difficulty relating to them on any level other than the sexual.

The show was aired at 9pm after the watershed

 

 Update: Vivienne Pattison Recommends...

18 rated bondage on Celebrity Big Brother


Link Here 15th January 2014  full story: Big Brother...Whinging about Channel 4's Big Brother
celebrity big brother 2014 logo Celebrity Big Brother has attracted a few complaints over its supposedly 18 certificate scenes , sexism and homophobia.

The most recent fun was on Monday night's show when housemates were given the task of producing certificate 18 footage .

Six contestants dressed in PVC bondage gear and were sent into a bedroom decorated like a pole dancing club. The scenes resulted in 47 whinges by yesterday morning.

Vivienne Pattison from Mediawatch-UK spouted:

Celebrity Big Brother has always been manipulative -- but this was specifically asking contestants to create 18-certified footage. It is not a free-for-all after the watershed. There is nothing stopping an eight-year-old going on to the Channel 5 on demand online content and ticking a box to say they are old enough to watch this sexual content.

Former heavyweight boxing champion Evander Holyfield attracted the most complaints with his comments that being gay ain't normal angered 98 viewers. There were also 52 complaints objecting to supposedly sexist comments by former N-Dubz star Dappy.

The show has attracted 342 complaints to Ofcom since the series started.

 

 Offsite Article: Daily quotes from 'Mary Whitehouse: Her Wit and wisdom'...


Link Here 15th January 2014
witty whitehouse Sarted up as promised, but it looks like someone has censored the 'wit'

MrsMaryWhitehouse Facebook Page

 

  And if you asked the kids, they'd probably just say: fuck 'em...

Newspapers and moralists respond to the BBFC guidelines update


Link Here 14th January 2014
strange things are happening9 logo A fair amount of column inches have been devoted to the news that the BBFC has tweaked its guidelines a bit.

Easily the most astute was from the excellent Strange Things are Happening website

Extract: Tinkering at the edges and pandering to the paranoid

See  article from  strangethingsarehappening.com . By David Flint

Not only is the BBFC press release rather vague, but the consultation report is contradictory. Time and time again, we are told that the majority agreed with the BBFC's classification of certain films, yet the only people quoted most of the time are those who disagree.

One could easily imagine the Board are allowing the vocal but irrational opinions of the minority to hold sway, in search of an easy life -- censoring and classifying according to the delusions of the most censorial. But that would be silly, wouldn't it?

Surely the Board wouldn't survey so many people, be told -- as they continually boast -- that they are getting it right, and then still tighten up restrictions because some people are too dumb to realise that Ted isn't a kid's film, too weak minded to be able to tell their kids that ghosts are not real - When you bring in supernatural, where you can't explain it away, then you have got problems. (Female, with children 6 -- 10) - or so prudish that they are shocked by the use of arse and crap in a U rated film?

...Read the full article

Foul Mouthed: The Daily Mail speaks shite about the classification of strong language

See  Surrender on film swearing: Children can see films full of obscenities as censors relax rules  from  dailymail.co.uk
See  Leader: Censors who refuse to fight for decency  from  dailymail.co.uk

The Daily Mail picks up on the relaxation of strong language in the 12 and 15 categories. The changes are:

  BBFC Guidelines 2009 BBFC Guidelines 2014
12 cert Strong language at 12/12A
  • Moderate language is allowed.
  • The use of strong language (for example, ‘fuck’) must be infrequent.

(In practice this meant a maximum of 4 or 5 uses of 'fuck' in a 12 rated film)

  • There may be moderate language.
  • Strong language may be permitted, depending on the manner in which it is used, who is using the language, its frequency within the work as a whole and any special contextual justification
15 cert Strong language at 15
  • There may be frequent use of strong language (for example, ‘fuck’).
  • The strongest terms (for example, ‘cunt’) may be acceptable if justified by the context.
  • Aggressive or repeated use of the strongest language is unlikely to be acceptable.

(In practice there is a limit of 3 or 4 uses of the word 'cunt' assuming them to be non aggressive, non sexual, and not based on power imbalance. In addition these allowed used must be grouped together)

  • There may be strong language. (ie 'fuck')
  • Very strong language (ie 'cunt') may be permitted, depending on the manner in which it is used, who is using the language, its frequency within the work as a whole and any special contextual justification.

The BBFC press release added:

Regarding language, the public wants the BBFC to be more flexible about allowing very strong language at 15. Context, not just frequency, is the most important factor in how language in films is perceived by the public.

Daily Mail logo The Daily Mail article spouted:

Children 'as young as 1'5 (sounds so much more outrageous than 15-17 year olds) are to be allowed to watch films filled with obscene language.

Swear words are now so commonplace among teenagers that age ratings will be relaxed, censors said yesterday.

The British Board of Film Classification claims parents accept it is game over when protecting their children from bad language. Controversy: The Woman in Black, starring Daniel Radcliffe, received more complaints than any other film in the past four years, according to the British Board of Film Classification

Under the new rules, even 12-year-olds could potentially be exposed to more profanities.

And the Daily Mail rounded up a little outrage from its panel of sound bite campaigners:

Pippa Smith, of the christian moralist campaign, Safermedia said:

It is truly outrageous -- parents and children are being let down by a regulator who is no longer interested in regulating.

Everyone except the BBFC and broadcast media knows children will copy the swearing they hear. Films make it cool. We dread to think what this latest announcement will mean for films deemed acceptable by the BBFC -- an industry-funded body --for our children.

Margaret Morrissey, of the family group Parents Outloud, asked:

If no standards are set by adults, what chance do our children have of being polite and decent grown-ups and parents?

Philip Davies, a Tory MP on the culture, media and sport select committee, said:

This reflects the general decline in good behavioural standards. It makes children think it's perfectly normal and reasonable to use bad language. I would rather they weren't exposed to even worse levels of swearing.

They are still children at 15 and are already exposed to things in films at a younger age than I would care for them to be exposed to. I would like to think that people would want to bring up their children to know that that isn't acceptable.

Vivienne Pattison of Mediawatch said:

Swearing is not tolerated anywhere else in life -- kids can't do it at school, you can't do it in public. So it is quite extraordinary that they're just saying "Well, it's a free-for-all in 15-rated films". There is this idea that you just have to accept obscene language because we've got an evolving contemporary society and that's just how it is. But, actually, no we don't.

The Daily Mail leader writer whinged:

In page after page of an exhaustive survey, parents tell the British Board of Film Classification of deep concerns over their children's exposure to obscene language in the playground and online.

The BBFC's response? With the perverse logic of the liberal intelligentsia, it concludes that the fight to protect the young from words that have become part of their vernacular is game over , and no longer worth fighting.

Hence its hugely controversial decision to make films containing foul language accessible to ever-younger audiences.

But then what's new? For decades, the BBFC has brought ever-more graphic obscenities and pornography into mainstream cinema.

Is it any wonder the battle for decency is being lost, when a body set up to defend standards proposes abject surrender?

The BBFC will launch a crackdown on sexual content and swearing in films

See  article from  telegraph.co.uk

Telegraph logo The Daily Telegraph featured seemingly contradicted the Daily Mail by saying that the BBFC will launch a crackdown on sexual content and swearing in films. However they were referring to BBFC changes in the children's categories rather than the 12 and 15 categories that were mentioned by the Daily Mail.

The Daily Mail also ran big headlines: Film ratings to be toughened up. Apart from a few lines of BBFC political correct vagaries about sexualisation then the toughening up claim seems to based on BBFC comments about horror at 12 an 15.

  BBFC Guidelines 2009 BBFC Guidelines 2014
12 cert Threat/Horror at 12/12A
  • Moderate physical and psychological threat may be permitted, provided disturbing sequences are not frequent or sustained.
  • There may be moderate physical and psychological threat and horror sequences.
  • Although some scenes may be disturbing, the overall tone should not be.
  • Horror sequences should not be frequent or sustained.
15 cert Threat/Horror at 15
  • Strong threat and menace are permitted unless sadistic or sexualised.
  • There may be strong threat and horror.
  • A sustained focus on sadistic or sexual threat is unlikely to be acceptable.

From my reading of the rather subtle rewording it would appear that one borderline 12/15 film every blue moon may be move from 12 under the old guidelines to 15 under the new guidelines. I think the Telegraph will be disappointed if they think Film ratings are to be toughened up.

Maintaining Public Trust in Film Classification

See  article from  huffingtonpost.co.uk by David Cooke, Director of the BBFC

david cooke Finally David Cooke reiterates most of what was said in yesterday's press release in a Huffington Post article. But he does make the point that if film censors actually censored according to the wishes of the Daily Mail sound bite panel, then they would end up simply being ignored:

Public trust is crucial to an organisation such as the BBFC. It is vital that the public - parents in particular - trust that the classification decisions we make reflect their own sensibilities. If for example, we were to classify depictions of strong, unsimulated sex as suitable for all, or restrict mild language to older teens or adults only, the public would soon start to lose confidence in, and so ignore, the BBFC's classifications.

We therefore go to great lengths to ensure that our decisions are in tune with society's concerns.

But, As David Flint comments, it seems a shame that the BBFC go to the trouble of ascertaining that the majority of the public thought they got it right about, say The Woman in Black, and then somehow give more credence, or at least more column inches of PC pandering propaganda to a handful of whingers and moralists.

 

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