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"Indecency", censorship and free speech

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
I know this came from MTV News, bastian of Peabody-worthy journalism that it is...but it's interesting.
MTV News story

Thoughts?
post #2 of 26
What a load of.......

Cable isn't something that automatically comes into every home. You have to purchase it. More and more there are packages of certain channels to purchase; no one is forced to get all of the channels available.

The one idea I do like in that article is creating "family friendly" packages of channels. Give parents who don't want to actually spend time with their kids monitoring what they watch that option to make them feel like responsible parents. But DO NOT limit what I, as an adult with NO children, can and cannot watch "for the sake of the children."

This Senator has to realize, too, that the "million" complaints mainly came from one source, a radical group who basically don't think anyone should be allowed to watch anything racier than Sesame Street.
post #3 of 26
Thread Starter 
I think he's the new head of the freakin' FCC....

You know, I think it stems from lazy, ineffective parents who don't want to take the time to actually parent and from the ultra-right trying to force it's values on everyone else.

Quote:
But DO NOT limit what I, as an adult with NO children, can and cannot watch "for the sake of the children."
Amen!! Why should we have to watch kiddie TV when we don't have and possibly don't even want kids?

It's a BRAVE NEW WORLD out there, folks!!
hehe As the billboards in "They Live" said....
"Marry, Conform, Reporduce..."
post #4 of 26
The new head of the FCC is Kevin Martin, who proposed the package of family friendly channels, a "family hour" of TV, and more blocking technology. I'm not opposed to any of those, per se. You're right, he's the one who made the statement about the "million" complaints.
post #5 of 26
Thread Starter 
There's a place for kid's programming and parental controls, no doubt...they're needed.
But those folks take it to an extreme. And it's scary that they're in control.
post #6 of 26
That is creepy, what a lame-o. I just saw the head of Education who got upset about the same sex couple on the PBS show for kids? She was on Leher hour. What a souless person, very rehearsed in speech. She spoke in those fake terms "this is unfortunate" "that is unfortunate" whenever something was confronted.
The interviewer brought up that show and she said it was a families choice whether or not to talk to kids about sexuality, and the interviewer said but doesn't keeping the show off the air make it that kids from those families are made to feel they are odd somehow, she just said that would be "unfortunate".
post #7 of 26
We have just returned the black Austar pay t.v box and had it cancelled, mostly because my children had turned into t.v. gluttons, they didnt want to do anything on the weekend because they had to watch the next episode of what ever.I have never let the t.v. be a babysitter to my children and I was not happy about it taking up so much of their time.We had only had it for 4 months and it has cost me $250.00 to get out of the contract but we have already been back to the park and had a couple of mother daughter days since it's been gone. There is still enought for them to watch on free to air t.v. .I also dont think that it is up to the producers of shows to keep them all child friendly, thats my job to decide what my children can watch but also what I can watch in my free time as well. Debbie
post #8 of 26
Ya know, if you took a look at me you'd think I wasn't a strict parent (and it's a good example of why not to judge a book by it's cover) -- but here's my thought on all this...

My kids are NOT allowed to have TVs in their bedrooms. And yes, one of them is 17 years old, so it has played out in real life. No video games or DVD players either. No TV period.

Video game console is in the living room where it can been seen and enjoyed as a family.

Internet is not allowed in bedrooms until age 16 (assuming the child has proven themselves trustworthy and is doing what they are supposed to be doing overall -- good grades, has a job, isn't getting into trouble at school, etc.).

Internet is in a my office (fairly centrally located in the house) and computers are all password protected. They have to ASK before they go online.

I utilize the v-chip technology on the living room TV where the kids watch. Anything on movie channels is blocked with a password by rating. Certain channels are blocked completely regardless of rating. Only in the last 3 months has my daughter (11) expressed an interest in anything not on a kid-friendly channel, and she asked first. (American Idol was what she wanted to watch).

I'm STRICT about what they watch on TV or consume on the internet or see in the movie theatre. Also, raising a daughter I keep no fashion magazines in my house (which I despise anyway). I'm not an ogre... they are allowed to watch TV and play video games - my daughter goes on the internet daily - my son likes IM and is mature enough to see the occassional rated R movie - PG13s for my daughter are hit and miss, I usually have to see it first to decide. I'm not overly concerned about language (cursing) but that hasn't been a problem with the kids (me and my husband are typical NYer potty-mouths LOL) -- the bad words IMO are racial slurs and ugliness (making fun of people). Excessive violence and overtly sexual content are what I monitor the media for. I think it's WRONG to have little children constantly exposed to seeing either. I was INFURIATED when I saw Nickelodeon running diet pill commercials!

And ya know what? My daughter is 11 and reads at a 10th grade level because we encourage OTHER activities - like reading - rather than spending 24/7 in front of the tube. It's good for them ya know . My stepson LOVES to ride his bike (he's into BMXing), and my daughter loves to read, draw, goes to Karate, acting class and piano lessons. My son works at a bike shop and has saved all his paychecks for a year! They both get good grades.

I remember when I was a kid, we went outside and played non-stop! Remember when "kid TV" was only on a mere few hours per day? You had no choice but to TURN IT OFF!
post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb

This Senator has to realize, too, that the "million" complaints mainly came from one source, a radical group who basically don't think anyone should be allowed to watch anything racier than Sesame Street.
Hmm, I am not even sure they would allow Sesame Street. Recall that there was one preacher who campaigned to use an anti-gay law in South Carolina to ban Bert and Ernie on grounds that he believes they are gay because they are two grown men (or muppets?) living together.

And recall when Sesame street introduced the HIV muppet in their South African version and a number of Republican Senators in the committee that oversees public funding sending a letter to PBS warning them about the addition and "reminding" them that they have the final say in their funding.
post #10 of 26
I subscribe to a newsletter that’s for us Radio people only and on Wednesday, I got this in the inbox with the rest of the newsletter:

New FCC chairman Kevin Martin passed the buck Tuesday (4/5) to congress to determine whether indecency regulations should apply to cable and satellite programming, telling the National Cable and Telecommunications Association convention in San Francisco that the FCC "is a creature of congress. We implement what congress directs us to. I think it will be for congress to end up figuring out what they think the appropriate rules should be."

This scares me. I may be a republican (okay really middle of the road, to a point), however, I do not agree on some of these idiots in congress who think everything should be family hour and as a person who is a producer (me) of a nationally syndicated show, I refuse to go along with the rules that this new chairman wants. Screw that. Pay Cable/Sat/ and Sat. Radio should not be regulated. The people who pay for it should regulate it themselves if they have kids in the household, not the government, but lately it seems some parents want the government to tell them what is good for their children, which is just about typical. I just this following statement which is VERY misleading:

“…And the following year, we received 10,000, and last year we received a million complaints ... I think what you're seeing is an environment in which consumers and parents are increasingly concerned."

Sorry, but 90% of those complaints was from one organization who complains about everything that they see on TV which they gloat about it all the time. He really needs to get his head out of somewhere dark. Heck some ABC station were afraid to air Saving Private Ryan because they felt they were going to get fined if they aired it. This almost sounds like the Spanish inquisition, if not the Witch Trials. Granted 4 months later, the FCC declared that the movie is okay to broadcast over their air; however… with this new chairman it could change.

People think that the ex-chairman Powell was bad, I have a feeling that this person is going to be hell on us as a radio as a whole ground and satellite based along with the cable/satellite providers are going to have a huge problem soon, if some ideas and stupidness are passed.
post #11 of 26
This just confirms my deepest fears...that our right-wing Congress is closer and close to turning our country into an overly-conservative theocracy... and that scares the bejeesus out of me!!!
post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by ugaimes
This just confirms my deepest fears...that our right-wing Congress is closer and close to turning our country into an overly-conservative theocracy... and that scares the bejeesus out of me!!!
I know what has happened? I even read a book about the rise of the religious right and I STILL don't understnad. I just heard a guy on the radio talking about how he lived in Europe for years and when he moved back here he was so surprised about how people vote for these ideological reasons and not for their economic or general welfare. We are so screwed if this keeps up cause the powers that be have no interest in protecting those interests cause they can ignore themand yet yell "morals" and get voted in. Bush will go to the Pope's funeral and get more votes than if he
has tax cuts that favor the upper 1 percent.

Well of course we know it sll started with the 60's....the thing is people forget we got a lot of great things from the 60's! I mean before that America was for white straight men and that's about it. And what kind fo American is that?
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arg0
This almost sounds like the Spanish inquisition, if not the Witch Trials.
Welcome to the new world. Courtesy of Janet Jackson et al, the knee-jerk reaction is that American's cannot think or decide for themselves.
Personal responsibility and actions are no longer the standard as we rush to find someone else to blame or hold accountable for the ills of society. Sure, late nite cable is a "sea of sin", but where are the parents instilling the values and morals that our children should have?

Monty Python said "No one expects the Spanish Inquisition" but we SHOULD be expecting them. They are already here and whittling away at our civil liberties, one piece at a time....
post #14 of 26
Quote:
People think that the ex-chairman Powell was bad, I have a feeling that this person is going to be hell on us as a radio as a whole ground and satellite based along with the cable/satellite providers are going to have a huge problem soon, if some ideas and stupidness are passed.
How does this guy get his job? I forget was he apointed?
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marge
How does this guy get his job? I forget was he apointed?
Don't quote me on this, but I think he is appointed, by whom I have no idea. FCC is one of the departments on the same level as the IRS... atleast in my opinion...
post #16 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Kumpf
Welcome to the new world. Courtesy of Janet Jackson et al, the knee-jerk reaction is that American's cannot think or decide for themselves.
Personal responsibility and actions are no longer the standard as we rush to find someone else to blame or hold accountable for the ills of society. Sure, late nite cable is a "sea of sin", but where are the parents instilling the values and morals that our children should have?

Monty Python said "No one expects the Spanish Inquisition" but we SHOULD be expecting them. They are already here and whittling away at our civil liberties, one piece at a time....
Yeah I know, we all saw it coming when it happened and the day after the superbowl, manure was hitting the fan across the nation and people became paranoid. I have a feeling that if this stunt wasn't pulled (Or atleast viacom didn't do the half time show) everything would still be rosey.
post #17 of 26
indecency is very hard to judge. It is determined by community standards. So what may be seen as indecent in alabama may not be in New York City. I don't know how jailing these people is going to hold up if it were to go before the Supreme Court.
post #18 of 26
I think a LOT of the complaints about children being exposed to indecency are missing the mark. Take the Janet Jackson thing as an example - parents were FREAKING OUT about what their children saw. Umm...people.....basically ALL children have seen breasts. Mothers breastfeed them and their younger siblings, they change in front of their children, share bathroom stalls at the mall, take showers together to save time, etc, etc. And it DOESN'T warp the kids because children don't see nudity as sexual...or at least, they didn't used to, until people started considering all nudity to be sexual and trying to remove it from their children's sight lines.

There's been so much yelling about children becoming "sexual" younger and younger....all these 8 year olds wearing tube tops and mini skirts (what my sister would call prostitots). Now, I'm NOT saying that it's not related to the amount of sexual images they see in the media. But I think something that is also contributing, something that has been completely overlooked, is the way that adults in this society act about what is "indecent" as far a nudity goes. Why do the kids see the images as sexual? In some cases, because they are. In others....why is a scantily clad person automatically sexual? I mean, to an adult or even an adolescent, the hormonal backup is there....nudity reminds them of sex. But to a child....where are they getting the idea that nudity = sex? They aren't having the same response to an image that an adult (or adolescent) would have.....

Consider this situation....a five year old in the room during the infamous breast showing half-time show....his mother freaks out about it...don't you think that will change the way he looks at breasts? They're now something that SHOULDN'T be seen, something forbidden for some reason he's TOO YOUNG to have had occur to him. If the mother acts like it's not a big deal, though....I think the kid would go on with whatever he was doing and never look back. He's seen a breast. It's not weird and it doesn't mean anything to him, especially nothing sexual.

I'm SO SICK of this ridiculous western society ideal that NUDITY = SEXUALITY. It doesn't. Have you ever watched Trama: Life in the ER? They will show graphic images of injury and medical procedures, but they fuzz out the breasts or pelvic area

I think that if our society could learn to separate sex and nudity in our minds, we could raise healthier children and adults.
post #19 of 26
Thread Starter 

Someone can be totally nude and not the least bit sexual...and someone can be totally clothed and ooze sexuality.

Nudity is natural. So is sexuality. They're both part of being human. There's nothing indecent about either one. (That doesn't mean that children need to be exposed to sexuality before they're ready for it...just that they should know it's natural and nothing to be ashamed of and repressed over.)
Western society is very repressed when it comes to both subjects. That's even something that sane parenting sometimes can't overcome...my parents let me know that there wasn't anything dirty or shameful about nudity, but I still have trouble disrobing in front of my doctor.
post #20 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leli

I'm SO SICK of this ridiculous western society ideal that NUDITY = SEXUALITY.
Are you sure it is a Western thing? The Europeans are more casual about nudity. Just compare the TV programs in Europe and the N.America. Japan TV seems more like Europe. If you turn to the other parts of the world such as in the Middle East, females would cover up even more. I think China TV is still pretty much uptight on nudity. Not too sure about India with all those suggestive dances around trees Furthermore, if I am not wrong there is a religion in idea that focuses on sex on the belief that sex should be demystified because people spent way too much time thinking about it.

But I believe the reason why people or politicians keep talking about it is because of the form of US politics and how religion plays an important role. Furthermore, it is something that is easy to do, as compared to other more pressing but complicated tasks and it gives the particular politician an enemy to target and get supporters round them.

This leads to a very interesting issue. Religious conservatism plays a prominent role in US more so than any countries yet the pornography industry in the US is huge, it is even larger than Hollywood. And the sale data shows that pornography is purchased equally across the nation from the liberal North East to the bible belt regions. Just think about it.
post #21 of 26
Thread Starter 
We are, after all, living in a country founded in part by the Puritans....
post #22 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoe'n'MissKitty
We are, after all, living in a country founded in part by the Puritans....
Yeah I think about that lately all the time, it so fits. I mean what other country would have prohibition, now I ask you?
post #23 of 26
I read this thing some time ago that one of the reasons America is the world's capitol for serial killers is because of this sexual double-standard. We are constantly being fed these hyper-sexual images, and then we are told it's bad, bad, bad!
Americans need to make up their minds & stop relying on the T.V. as a universal babysitter.
I agree that the minority of those who chose not to conform & reproduce should NOT have to watch kiddie T.V., but then again, I am so sick of looking at these sleazy over-done Barbie Dolls.
How about cable packages for people who like Discover, History, Animal Planet, Home & Garden, all of that good stuff?
post #24 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Me-n-my guys
I read this thing some time ago that one of the reasons America is the world's capitol for serial killers is because of this sexual double-standard. We are constantly being fed these hyper-sexual images, and then we are told it's bad, bad, bad!
Very good point. Which begs the question(s): Why are we always told it's bad bad bad? What's so terrible about human sexuality? And could it be that the reason we beg for and eat up these images is just that we ARE so repressed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Me-n-my guys
Americans need to make up their minds & stop relying on the T.V. as a universal babysitter.
Amen to that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Me-n-my guys
I agree that the minority of those who chose not to conform & reproduce should NOT have to watch kiddie T.V., but then again, I am so sick of looking at these sleazy over-done Barbie Dolls.
How about cable packages for people who like Discover, History, Animal Planet, Home & Garden, all of that good stuff?
The simple solution would be to change the channel and use the parental lock. There are plenty of family-freindly channels/shows out there, and parents need to take some responsibility in identifying what they want their kids to see (or not see) and enforce that. Personally, I think that's a better solution than taking away the stuff that's not meant to be family-friendly.
JMHO.
post #25 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb
What a load of.......

Cable isn't something that automatically comes into every home. You have to purchase it. More and more there are packages of certain channels to purchase; no one is forced to get all of the channels available.

The one idea I do like in that article is creating "family friendly" packages of channels. Give parents who don't want to actually spend time with their kids monitoring what they watch that option to make them feel like responsible parents. But DO NOT limit what I, as an adult with NO children, can and cannot watch "for the sake of the children."

This Senator has to realize, too, that the "million" complaints mainly came from one source, a radical group who basically don't think anyone should be allowed to watch anything racier than Sesame Street.
Heidi, while I have not seen it lately there has been a commercial going on in PRIME TIME and NOT on PG or R shows with a guy named Bill who is so happy as he grew his manly part bigger and now all the girls love him. It was repeaded several times! So what are people supposed to do? Any child could have seen it!
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyBabies
Heidi, while I have not seen it lately there has been a commercial going on in PRIME TIME and NOT on PG or R shows with a guy named Bill who is so happy as he grew his manly part bigger and now all the girls love him. It was repeaded several times! So what are people supposed to do? Any child could have seen it!
If it's the one I'm thinking of, I've seen that commercial and they don't spell out what the product is. They call it "male enhancement". I think most kids wouldn't even register it. They'd pay no more attention to it than to a commercial for the Mr. Clean eraser.
There is no sexual component to the commercial either (except a vague reference to the wife being happier). If there was in the commercial you're talking about, Heidi, then I must be thinking of a different one.

I think that if your kid notices the commerical, you should TALK TO THEM about it. Answer their questions. The commercial isn't an advertisement for sex, it advertises its product. It's like the Viagra commercials and the birth control pill commercials.....there's just a bunch of happy people (especially in the viagra commercials)...but there's no explicit mention of sex, so I doubt that kids too young to already know about viagra would have any idea what the commercial was about. If they're old enough to understand (ie have heard of viagra, or in the case of the other commercial, figure out what they mean by "male enhancement") then talk to them about the drug and why and by whom it is used. Create an ongoing open dialogue about sex early on and you'll have less trouble talking to your kids when they're teenagers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bumpy
Are you sure it is a Western thing? The Europeans are more casual about nudity. Just compare the TV programs in Europe and the N.America. Japan TV seems more like Europe. If you turn to the other parts of the world such as in the Middle East, females would cover up even more. I think China TV is still pretty much uptight on nudity. Not too sure about India with all those suggestive dances around trees Furthermore, if I am not wrong there is a religion in idea that focuses on sex on the belief that sex should be demystified because people spent way too much time thinking about it.
Good point! You're totally right, it's not localized to the western way of thinking and there are exceptions. All around the world, people continue to confuse the idea of nudity with sex.
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