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Censorship, infringing on artists, or "protecting" kids?

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
Just wondering what everyone thinks of this.
I would make a poll, but I can't figure out how! lol
Bush signs DVD filtering measure

Personally, I think it's unnecessary and ruins the integrity of the film. If you don't want your kids exposed to sex, violence or foul language, don't let them watch it. Don't take what someone has made and pick and choose what part you want to leave in and take out. The director has already decided that.
post #2 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoe'n'MissKitty
Just wondering what everyone thinks of this.
I would make a poll, but I can't figure out how! lol
Bush signs DVD filtering measure

Personally, I think it's unnecessary and ruins the integrity of the film. If you don't want your kids exposed to sex, violence or foul language, don't let them watch it. Don't take what someone has made and pick and choose what part you want to leave in and take out. The director has already decided that.

Agreed. Not that parents should only have Disney-like films in the home, but if you are going to watch films like that, watch them when the kids are asleep or not home. I don't believe with tampering with an artist's work, even if it is something I don't consider art. I actually heard a few years ago that some people wanted to put a fig leaf on Michelangelo's David, how absurd.

Now if they would only invent a machine that would filter out most of Bush's speeches and his never ending gaffes. LOL.
post #3 of 26
I can't even imagine how this could be legal. It's ridiculous. It's definitley up there with trying to censor cable as far as idiocy goes.
post #4 of 26
I agree, it should be down to the parents to decide what their child sees (although many don't seem to bother). Why should one set of people decide for everyone else anyway?

Sue
post #5 of 26
There are two main points that has to be addressed:
A) Lack of consistency
B) Market place of Ideas: Competition of views or Market failure

A) Lack of Consistency
The fundamental reason for such censorship is that there is a belief that exposure to such objectionable material may somehow make children lose control and be violent themselves. It operates on the assumption that the children are not able to discern the difference between make belief and reality.

Now if one adopts the view that children are not able to discern the difference and become violent themselves then one must also accept that every form of exposure to such objectional material will also produce the same effect.

Yet is not the bible filled with images and scene of violence but no one is seriously claiming that sane people are not able to discern the difference. When certain wackos goes round killing others because of what they read in the bible, they are dismissed as wackos correctly. But when psychos who are inspired by movies or computer games goes round killing, the movies are blamed. Why the inconsistency?

Furthermore some religious fundamentalist groups do preach hatred against certain groups of people. According to the annual FBI statistics, there are thousands of crime with some murders linked to hate crimes. If one is truly concern about violence linked to what a person views, then perhaps should they not first act against people who actively preach such violence and that there is actual evidence of violence rather than focus on a supposed indirect link between violence in make-belief films and actual violence.

B) Market place of Ideas: Competition of views or Market failure
My position is that censorship is prima facie bad it does not mean that freedom of expression be elevated to such a level that it is absolute.

The reason is that for each fundamental liberty, at a certain point it intersects with another fundamental liberty and one would need to decide which should prevail in a free and democratic society. Some examples are:
1) Equality Vs Religion / Expression: Treatment of women
2) Expression Vs Life and Liberty: Hate speech promoting violence
Thus in Germany and France, some form of expression that involves Nazism is prohibited but it would be hard pressed to claim that as a result the people are being oppressed or that society as a whole is worse off.

The belief that we should allow all expression because of the belief that in a market place of ideas, rational thought would prevail is a noble hope but does it really always work? The 1) Lack of available of Information 2) False Information presented as Truth 3) Tendency to lead from fear and emotions rather than rational objective thought are some dangers that prevents the market from operating.
post #6 of 26
I'm REALLLLLY torn about this.

It's wrong to CHANGE what the director/movie studio has created. But this legislation doesn't allow for changing them. It allows parents to choose to skip or mute certain scenes.

I'm torn because in theory I agree parents should control what their kids watch (and I'm VERY strict about what my daughter is allowed to see).

But in practice that isn't so easy... especially when you have a child in the 9-13 range. It's an awkward age... they are starting to be interested in live-action movies (not just cartoons). Have you looked at what is in movie theatres or on DVD? There is RARELY a movie that is rated PG - they are always either G (cartoon or "babyish") or jump right to PG-13. My mother is taking my daughter (who's 11) to the movies today and there is only ONE movie in all our local multiplexes that is rated PG (and it's a cartoon).

So as a parent, I'm left to decide if PG-13's are okay. Problem is, some are and some aren't, and there's no way for me to know without watching it first.

A good example: School of Rock was PG-13. This was a GREAT movie and there was really no reason my 11 year old daughter couldn't see it. It was a nice story, was light and fun, and had a message. It was a real family movie.

Put that in comparison to the new "A Lot Like Love" which is also PG-13. I haven't seen it yet, but from what I've heard there is some real gratuitous sexual content in it. There's no way for me to know how far it goes without seeing it. There's no way for me to know if it's appropriate for an 11 year old.

PG-13 tells me it may not be appropriate. But by that guide my daughter would have missed School of Rock which was an AWESOME movie (that she loved!)

So... in practice I can see how having the option to skip or mute certains types of content could be helpful. Maybe chapter 13 on the DVD is over-the-top sex scenes (lacking nudity) in a PG-13 that a parent could choose to skip, because the rest of the movie is just fine for their kid to see.

Difficult really...
post #7 of 26
Another reason to hate Bush why am I not surprised. I detest censorship in any of it's various forms.

And why is it that parent's can't give off their duffs and start actually raising their kids instead of relying on TV and movies to do it for them?

And Amy-DHH kudos to you for actually taking the time to regulate what your children watch. That's the mark of a truely good parent in my opinion. My parent's used to prewatch any movie over the PG rating before I got to watch it. Were they all movies they wanted to watch? Probably not and there were several I wanted to see that I was not allowed to see until I was much older. Actually I do the same thing with the movies I take my cousin's children and my Little to.
post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrayKittenLove
And Amy-DHH kudos to you for actually taking the time to regulate what your children watch. That's the mark of a truely good parent in my opinion. My parent's used to prewatch any movie over the PG rating before I got to watch it. Were they all movies they wanted to watch? Probably not and there were several I wanted to see that I was not allowed to see until I was much older. Actually I do the same thing with the movies I take my cousin's children and my Little to.
Thanks for saying-so Traci... though I don't see it as anything "special" that I'm doing. I don't understand how parents DON'T regulate their kids TV watching and internet usage. You're asking for trouble if you don't.
post #9 of 26
I'm slightly torn on this.

I really hate all the legislation and everything done "for the children". For goodness sake, we can't make all of society safe for children, that's not the government's job! Besides, there are many things that I enjoy as an ADULT with no children that I do not want taken away because some kid *might* do it or get ahold of it because his parents weren't paying attention. (This just hit on one of my biggest pet peeves, being a responsbile adult who has decided not to have children...)

On the other hand.... This bit of technology doesn't have to affect those who don't want it. It's better than them legislating what everyone can or cannot see in a movie, and it's better than how Wal-Mart edits the CDs they sell without even notifying the consumer that it isn't as it was originally recorded. And unlike Amy, there are a lot of very lazy parents who may not want their kids to see the sex and violence, but they just can't say no when Little Johnny asks. Yeah, I'm tired of legislation making sure that the lazy and irresponsible in society don't have to actually do anything different, but the alternatives which would affect us all are far worse.
post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb
Yeah, I'm tired of legislation making sure that the lazy and irresponsible in society don't have to actually do anything different, but the alternatives which would affect us all are far worse.
On the other hand - it could also just be more technology that people don't use. They did a study a while back about how many parents were utilizing v-chip or v-chip-like technology (which I DO use) and something like 80% of parents had never used it. Everyone screamed about censorship then, but the bottom line is parents still have to make the choice to turn it "on" or "off" and use the technology.

How sad that too many people just plop their kids in front of TV/Internet. How much sadder that they don't care what their kids are watching/seeing.
post #11 of 26
Am I the only kid in the world, besides my brother, who was allowed to watch action and horror movies pretty much my whole life? I just find it amusing how people think movies will turn their kids into serial killers. I'm a pacifist even. I love animals. There has been no premarital sex. I'm getting a Masters degree, in seminary no less. I don't do drugs. I love my mom. I've never had any behavior problems. Mind you my favorite movies in middle school were the Dead trilogy. I watched movies like Friday the 13th and movies with Jean Claude Van Dam and Steven Segal all throughout elementary and middle school. I just don't see what the big deal is for many kids, although not all kids. I think it should be up to the parents to discern what is appropriate for their kids or not. Not a video edititing company or the President.
post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by esrgirl
Am I the only kid in the world, besides my brother, who was allowed to watch action and horror movies pretty much my whole life? I just find it amusing how people think movies will turn their kids into serial killers. I'm a pacifist even. I love animals. There has been no premarital sex. I'm getting a Masters degree, in seminary no less. I don't do drugs. I love my mom. I've never had any behavior problems. Mind you my favorite movies in middle school were the Dead trilogy. I watched movies like Friday the 13th and movies with Jean Claude Van Dam and Steven Segal all throughout elementary and middle school. I just don't see what the big deal is for many kids, although not all kids. I think it should be up to the parents to discern what is appropriate for their kids or not. Not a video edititing company or the President.
I agree with you, but I kinda gave my thoughts on that already - When the ratings are so flakey, this is really just another tool for parents to choose to use (it's not editing, it's skipping or muting specific scenes if you choose to).

I certainly don't think that violence in movies will make my kids serial killers. I think negligent parenting by ignoring what your kids are exposed to DOES produce problems... and it's as much the content as the parenting itself. Your parents probably (and apparently) did a good job in a lot of other areas.

Also, in the last 10 years the SEX has just gotten really bad. When I was a kid I got to watch sitcoms on TV with my family... I wouldn't THINK of letting my daughter see many of them because they are so over-the-top sexual and not appropriate for an 11-year-old.

Funny enough, I have funky hair, and eye-brow peirced and tattoos. I am not conservative or a prude, and people who don't know me judge me without knowing me as a real permissive mother, probably even a bad mother. Little do they know I take parenting my kids very seriously. I don't seek to over protect, but I also don't think it's necessary to expose them to gratuitous violence and sex until they are mature enough (and that varies from kid to kid). My 11-year-old doesn't BENEFIT from playing Grand Theft Auto, nor seeing Debbie Does Dallas.

Keep in mind, she's into acting (big time) and we just took her to see a teenage production of "Rent" - so like I said, I'm certainly not a prude
post #13 of 26
I really don't see anything wrong with providing parents with the technological means to do their own censoring. I'm not a parent, but used the V-chip whenever our nephew was staying with us when he was younger, and never allowed him full access to our video collection (no porn) until he turned 16.
Why do the studios have a problem with this? Many films appear in two versions: the U.S./Asian version (less sex) and the European version (more sex, sometimes less violence). How many times have you seen a film at the movie theater, and then watched it on TV later, and noticed that some scenes were missing? Most of the cuts are probably to allow for more commercials, but I seriously doubt that all of them are. I've even noticed some differences between the cinema version and the later video/DVD version of some films.
post #14 of 26
how are you going to watch the Matrix without all the violence. The moives have ratings for a reason. Don't let the kids watch PG 13 if you don't want them to. It's time parents start parenting agian instead of waiting until the government to do everything for them.
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by eburgess
how are you going to watch the Matrix without all the violence. The moives have ratings for a reason. Don't let the kids watch PG 13 if you don't want them to. It's time parents start parenting agian instead of waiting until the government to do everything for them.
You should read what I wrote in a previous reply about PG-13.

The Matrix was rated R, so going into it as a parent you know it's not meant for kids, period. If you choose to let them see it, well you are pretty well prepared that it's going to be either really violent, potentially really sexual (containing nudity), or both.

PG-13 covers a much more broad range, as I stated in my earlier reply. There are hardly ANY PG movies anymore. And because PG-13 can be so broad, it's REALLY hard to know what to expect. You can watch it first and then decide to skip certain scenes that you don't think are appropriate for your kid. Obviously, if there's too many scenes like that, you'll just choose not to let them see it at all.
post #16 of 26
Amy-DHH You seem to be the lone exception. And it wasn't directed towards you specifically. I used the Matrix simply as an example, it was the first movie that popped in my head.

When I was growing up my parents knew what we watched. Most parents these days don't want to parent. They want the TV to babysit and government to do everything for them. if you don't want your kids to watch a certian movie then don't let them watch it it is simple as that. Don't change a movie b/c kids may see it. I had to wait to see some movies because I was too young when it came out, or I had to watch it with my parents.
I'm sure many little kids are going to want to go see the new Star Wars movie oopening in a few weeks.... I'm so excited. But George Lucus himself has said that it is not for kids under 13, and to not take them to see it. But people are not going to listen and take the kids anyway.
The movies have ratings for a reason people should look at that before going to see, buying or renting movies
post #17 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by esrgirl
Am I the only kid in the world, besides my brother, who was allowed to watch action and horror movies pretty much my whole life? I just find it amusing how people think movies will turn their kids into serial killers. I'm a pacifist even. I love animals. There has been no premarital sex. I'm getting a Masters degree, in seminary no less. I don't do drugs. I love my mom. I've never had any behavior problems. Mind you my favorite movies in middle school were the Dead trilogy. I watched movies like Friday the 13th and movies with Jean Claude Van Dam and Steven Segal all throughout elementary and middle school. I just don't see what the big deal is for many kids, although not all kids. I think it should be up to the parents to discern what is appropriate for their kids or not. Not a video edititing company or the President.

Actually I was allowed to watch them too but I was a teenager before I was allowed to watch horror flicks. Action flicks on the other hand I always watched action flicks but only if my Dad was around to cover my eyes when things got too much for my age.
post #18 of 26
Thread Starter 
The main problem I have with this is that the total effect, statement and artistic intent of some movies would be lost without the sex, violence and/or language.

Quote:
Originally Posted by esrgirl
Am I the only kid in the world, besides my brother, who was allowed to watch action and horror movies pretty much my whole life? I just find it amusing how people think movies will turn their kids into serial killers. I'm a pacifist even. I love animals. There has been no premarital sex. I'm getting a Masters degree, in seminary no less. I don't do drugs. I love my mom. I've never had any behavior problems. Mind you my favorite movies in middle school were the Dead trilogy. I watched movies like Friday the 13th and movies with Jean Claude Van Dam and Steven Segal all throughout elementary and middle school. I just don't see what the big deal is for many kids, although not all kids. I think it should be up to the parents to discern what is appropriate for their kids or not. Not a video edititing company or the President.
You're not the only one. My boyfriend was picking out horror movies on his own at age 6 and dressed up as Jason (Friday the 13th) for Halloween when he was 7. He's a well-adjusted, good-hearted adult without a truely violent bone in his body. Of course, he's of above-average intelligence and his parents were sure to instill in him the idea that movies aren't real life.
I was allowed to watch pretty much what I wanted, too, but I never wanted to watch horror movies. I was always afraid I'd have nightmares. lol


On a related topic....
Am I the only one who thinks that frankness about sex and sexuality is good for kids? Not letting them watch porn, or read Playboy or anything like that of course, but just being open with them about it...like, tell them where babies come from, and answer their questions about it honestly, if they ask any. I've noticed that people who's parents were frank about it have far fewer hang-ups as adults, and are more likely to be smart about it and not engage in medically or emotionally risky behaviors.
post #19 of 26
This is my thought on all of this: I like our ratings system. If you have really little kids, show them G-Rated, slightly older kids watch PG rated, etc. If you have questions about a movie, watch it yourself before letting your kids watch it. It is the parents' responsibility to try to make sure that their children watch what they deem is appropriate for their children...not the person some people elected as President. I agree that we should not mess with the integrity of a movie. We don't put pasties over the breasts on nudes in a museum when children visit!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoe'n'MissKitty
On a related topic....
Am I the only one who thinks that frankness about sex and sexuality is good for kids? Not letting them watch porn, or read Playboy or anything like that of course, but just being open with them about it...like, tell them where babies come from, and answer their questions about it honestly, if they ask any. I've noticed that people who's parents were frank about it have far fewer hang-ups as adults, and are more likely to be smart about it and not engage in medically or emotionally risky behaviors.
You go chick!
post #20 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoe'n'MissKitty
On a related topic....
Am I the only one who thinks that frankness about sex and sexuality is good for kids? Not letting them watch porn, or read Playboy or anything like that of course, but just being open with them about it...like, tell them where babies come from, and answer their questions about it honestly, if they ask any. I've noticed that people who's parents were frank about it have far fewer hang-ups as adults, and are more likely to be smart about it and not engage in medically or emotionally risky behaviors.
No, you're not the only one. I believe in being open with my kids about sex. That has very little to do with whether it's appropriate for them to watch young adults having casual sex in a movie. Context is often something kids (young) don't have the perspective to understand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ugaimes
This is my thought on all of this: I like our ratings system. If you have really little kids, show them G-Rated, slightly older kids watch PG rated, etc. If you have questions about a movie, watch it yourself before letting your kids watch it. It is the parents' responsibility to try to make sure that their children watch what they deem is appropriate for their children...not the person some people elected as President. I agree that we should not mess with the integrity of a movie. We don't put pasties over the breasts on nudes in a museum when children visit!!!
The rating system sucks, in case you're interested
Really, when something like "School of Rock" (rude humor and drug references - mind you, I think it was ONE drug reference that went over most kids heads, and define "rude?") is PG-13 along with "Austin Powers" (nudity, sex-related dialogue and humor - nudity? sex-reatled dialogue?) -- tell me exactly how parents are supposed to know ahead of time???

School of Rock, as I've said - awesome kids movie for the 8-13 age group. Good story, nice message, family fun, and even heart warming. Austin Powers? Not so sure it's appropriate for the 8-13 group.

And take a look at your local movie listings. Very FEW movies are rated PG. They are just about all PG-13.

One drug reference makes a movie PG-13. They are fighting to make any movie with smoking (cigarettes) in it PG-13. "Rude humor" gets a PG-13 (though I'm not sure I know what that means). For my daughter who is 11, Disney isn't cutting it and most of the cartoons don't interest her. Live action PG movies? There are exactly two I was able to find listing locally, and only one I'd let her go see today (because the other my husband and I want to take her to). The Pacifier. The other one is Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

So when your kids want to see movies more than once every other month and they fall into this tough age group, PG ain't cutting it. And PG-13 is way to vague.

Maybe I'm just hammering home the same point over and over, and obviously I feel strongly about it. First off, this isn't censorship which I DO NOT agree with. This is giving parents the ability to pre-screen a movie and only THEN decide "okay, skip chapter 13 which has a little nudity/sex" on an otherwise okay PG-13 or "mute the cursing". It's like programming your v-chip TV to say "nope, no access to TV shows rated M."

They already do it to a LOT of music. You can buy the explicit version or the version where the bad words are bleeped out.

If you don't believe in it, don't buy DVD players equipped with it, or let your kids watch whatever they want. It's really very simple. It's not taking anything away from anyone.

And MAYBE, just MAYBE the movie industry will decide to make just a few more family-friendly films so we don't have to scower 6 movie theatres to find one rated PG flick.

I realize I"m ranting LOL bare with me...

We have nearly 700 DVDs and are BIG movie watchers. Trust me when I say as a concerned parent, but one that certainly isn't a prude (and yes, I'm open with my kids about sex) - it is NOT easy to find a movie the whole family can see, or that an 8-13 year old is interested in that ISN'T overly sexual or violent.
post #21 of 26
My brother saw the movie "Saw" in the theater and we saw the remake of "Dawn of the Dead" together. The amazing thing to me was the amount of kids at both movies who were totally freaked out. I can't believe anyone would take their kid to see "Saw" especially, but even more so when the kid is afraid of horror movies. That being said, I think it parents should be able to use their own judgement when it comes to what movies they let their kids see. My mom actually limited the amount of TV we could watch a day to one hour. We could watch movies a couple times a week. There was more of an emphasis on going out and playing or doing some physical activity, even when we were teenagers.

I read an article by Stephen King not too long ago about how the movie ratings system works. Basically he said that he thought it was pretty ridiculous that The Two Towers was rated PG-13 instead of R. The whole issue seems very political and money driven, rather than based on any set of standards. So you really don't know what you are getting when you find a movie that is PG13 or R.
post #22 of 26
Oh, and when I first saw this thread I thought it was about the video editing that companies who are not affliated with the production company are making.. like this group- http://www.familyflix.com/
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by esrgirl
My brother saw the movie "Saw" in the theater and we saw the remake of "Dawn of the Dead" together. The amazing thing to me was the amount of kids at both movies who were totally freaked out. I can't believe anyone would take their kid to see "Saw" especially, but even more so when the kid is afraid of horror movies. That being said, I think it parents should be able to use their own judgement when it comes to what movies they let their kids see. My mom actually limited the amount of TV we could watch a day to one hour. We could watch movies a couple times a week. There was more of an emphasis on going out and playing or doing some physical activity, even when we were teenagers.
I LOVED the movie "Saw" but I cannot imagine letting ANY child see it! It was so incredibly violent and disturbing!

Nor can I imagine having to sit next to a small child through it (another issue, but I think it's highly inconsiderate of parents to bring their small children to clearly-adult movies). It's inconsiderate to those of us who pay babysitters and want a night out away from the kids!
post #24 of 26
I must say, after watching "Saw" on pay per view tonight there is no way in heck my mom would have let me watch that one. It was a great movie though. I can't imagine letting a kid watch it. My brother said there were quite a few kids in the theater at that one. That movie was just so twisted. I couldn't believe the ending. I just wonder what happened to Cary Elwes.
post #25 of 26
Kind of related to parents taking their kids to see scary movies. I saw The Passion of the Christ in the movie theater and was floored to see how many parents took their little (and when I say little I mean some younger than school age) children to see this movie. I'm twenty-eight and am not sure that I was ready for that kind of violence much less a child.

Yet I bet that some of those parents in that theater wouldn't let their child watch some of the other things out there that are much less violent.
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrayKittenLove
Kind of related to parents taking their kids to see scary movies. I saw The Passion of the Christ in the movie theater and was floored to see how many parents took their little (and when I say little I mean some younger than school age) children to see this movie. I'm twenty-eight and am not sure that I was ready for that kind of violence much less a child.

Yet I bet that some of those parents in that theater wouldn't let their child watch some of the other things out there that are much less violent.

exactly i saw that movie at age 17 i watched horror movies all my life and i almost puked. as far as the whole dvd equipment as long as there will always be the option i dont see a problem. i grew up with alien, chucky, freddie, pet semtary (the only move that did give me nightmares) my parents taught me it was fake even showed some of those same actors alive. my mom told me chucky was a puppet and wasnt real and never will be. my parents felt i should know what death was at an early age. that it was better to see it on tv and know then to have it happen to me and not understand. both of my parents lost a parent at a young age.

i would also like to say that in my opion the look who's talking movies arent to bad i was young and the sex i didnt get alot of the grown up things people freak about most children miss. we rate movies from an adult standard we dont think to consider what all truely is the child going to understand.

and i think this point alot of parents need to realize no matter how good you censor what your children watch you will be amazed at what they will learn at school the number of sex jokes i knew before i was out of elementary all the jokes i learned from other kids. eminem is one the artist parents hate the most but i ask people to stop and seriosusly listen to the lyrics and not foucs on the bad and you will find a lot of good points he has
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