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Press Release

July 27, 2006

PTC: Cable Choice Will Give Parents True Control Over TV Content

LOS ANGELES (July 27, 2006) – The Parents Television Council™ joined today with Congressmen Dan Lipinski (D-IL) and Tom Osborne (R-NE) to support providing families with cable choice, the ability to take and pay for only the cable channels they want and called on the cable industry to support this plan.  The following are excerpts from a speech given at a press conference today by L. Brent Bozell, president of the PTC™.


"Everyone knows that entertainment television is rapidly becoming a trash dump of indecency and in recent years this has become an issue of national concern.  Day after day and night after night, families are assaulted by graphic violence and murder; explicit sexual situations, even including depictions of brutal rape, incest, pedophilia, and the like; and filthy gutter language until recently never heard on television.


"This year, Congress finally acted to increase the fines against those broadcasters who violate broadcast decency law.  The broadcast airwaves are owned by the public, and community standards of decency must be protected.  But cable is a different matter altogether, and another solution to the problem must be found.


"There are three possible solutions to the cable indecency issue.  The first is to give FCC the same oversight powers over cable as it has on broadcast television, but this idea is going to face philosophical and practical challenges.  Second, there is the notion of family tiers, but what has been offered by the cable industry thus far is wholly unacceptable and is a product designed to fail.  What the cable networks have put on the table as their idea of ‘family tiers' is pathetic and everybody knows it.  Moreover, with the problem of cable indecency reaching the epidemic level it has, the cable industry is in no position to define for families what a ‘family tier' is.


"Parents must be given real control over the programming that enters their homes via cable and satellite.  Families must be given the right to pick, choose, and pay for only the channels they want to receive.  Thus the third option—Cable Choice—is the best solution.  I commend Congressman Lipinski and Congressman Osborne for siding with the overriding sentiment of American families and introducing this legislation that holds the promise of giving families real choices in cable television programming.


"Earlier today the entertainment industry unveiled a publicity campaign designed to absolve itself of all responsibility for the raw sewage it pumps into America's living rooms night after night.  Their $300 million dollar publicity stunt seeks to ‘empower parents' and give parents ‘complete control' over their televisions.


"Let me be very, very clear in my remarks.  First, it is not parents who are responsible for the raunch that's on television.  It is the television industry.  Rather than spending hundreds of millions of dollars telling parents what to do, the industry should rethink this shameful publicity stunt and instead apply itself to cleaning up the mess it has created.  Second, if the industry really wants to give parents ‘complete control' over their televisions, then let the industry step forward today and endorse the one solution that will give parents that control: Cable Choice. 


"The entertainment industry can't have it both ways.  If the entertainment industry really cares about giving parents ‘complete control' over their television sets then they must and will support Cable Choice.  If the television industry opposes Cable Choice, then their call for ‘parental control' is exposed as a farce.  Cable Choice is the one solution that will truly empower the consumer, free of any government regulation, to decide what he or she wants in his or her home.  It is a solution that is being endorsed by Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals, alike.


"The entertainment industry has been maintaining for years it was up to parents to take a greater responsibility.  This is the ultimate in parental control.


"It is time, high time, that the cable industry stopped forcing consumers to subsidize its raunch.  It is time for Cable Choice, and if the industry really cares about parental responsibility, it's time for the entertainment industry to put up or shut up."


To schedule an interview with a PTC representative, please contact Kelly Oliver at (703) 683-5004, ext. 140.

The Parents Television Council™ (www.parentstv.org®) is a non-partisan education organization advocating responsible entertainment. It was founded in 1995 to ensure that children are not constantly assaulted by sex, violence and profanity on television and in other media. This national grassroots organization has over one million members across the United States, and works with television producers, broadcasters, networks and sponsors in an effort to stem the flow of harmful and negative messages targeted to children. The PTC also works with elected and appointed government officials to enforce broadcast decency standards. Most importantly, the PTC produces critical research and publications documenting the dramatic increase in sex, violence and profanity in entertainment. This information is provided free of charge so parents can make informed viewing choices for their own families.




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