FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2006
New PTC Study Finds More Violence on Children's TV than on Adult-Oriented TV
For this study, the PTC focused on entertainment
programming for school-aged children aged 5-10 on broadcast
television and expanded basic cable. Eight networks – four
broadcast and four cable – offer programming matching that
criteria: ABC, Fox, NBC, WB, ABC Family, Cartoon Network, Disney
Channel and Nickelodeon. The PTC focused its analysis on
after-school and Saturday morning programming. The analysis
covered a three-week period during the summer of 2005 for a
total of 443.5 hours of children's programming. The study did
not include children's educational programming.
The study found:
3,488 incidents of
violence for an average of 7.86 instances per hour. [Even
when the innocent, "cartoony" violence (i.e.
an anvil falling on
Wile E. Coyote's head) is extracted, there were
still 2,794 instances of violence for an average of 6.30
instances per hour. According to a 2002 PTC study, the six
broadcast networks combined averaged only 4.71 instances of
violence per hour during prime time programming.]
858 incidents of
verbal aggression for an average of 1.93 instances per hour
662 incidents of
disruptive, disrespectful or otherwise problematic attitudes
and behaviors for an average of 1.49 instances per hour
275 incidents of
sexual content for an average of 0.62 instances per hour
250 incidents of
offensive language for an average of 0.56 instances per hour
Cartoon Network had the highest total number of violent
incidents, the ABC Family Channel turned out to pack the
most punch-per-program, with 318 instances of violence (only
11 of these could be considered "cartoon" violence) for an
average of 10.96 violent incidents per episode.
The Disney Channel
had the least-violent children's programming with 0.95
incidents per episode.
Examples of content on child-focused television
– The influence of Japanese
children's cartoons is quite evident. This very intense
scene took place on Fox's
Zeke and Yoh continue fighting. Yoh is knocked down many
times and is worn down. Finally, Zeke knocks Yoh's sword
away and then kicks him in the head, knocking him out. Zeke
then yanks Yoh off the ground by his hair then reaches into
Yoh's chest. Yoh is screaming. Zeke takes Yoh's soul and
puts it in his own body. Yoh appears dead. [August 13,
– During the study period Nickelodeon aired an episode of
Sponge Bob Square Pants
entitled "Sailor Mouth," the subject of which is foul
Innocent Sponge Bob doesn't understand the dirty word
graffiti he sees on a dumpster but Patrick tells him it's a
"sentence enhancer" for when you want to talk fancy. The
rest of the episode features Sponge Bob and Patrick using
bleeped foul language ["fuck," "asshole," etc]. The bleeps
are made to sound like a dolphin which makes the whole thing
seem humorous. At the end Sponge Bob and Patrick realize
the words are bad and promise to never use them again but
the episode ends with them telling Momma Krabs the 13 bad
words Mr. Krabs has just said. All are punished by Momma
Krabs for "talking like sailors." [August 1, 2005]
– Disney's Sister,
Sister had sexual content falling into a number
of categories, from references to pornography to innuendo:
Lisa falls down and hurts her back while getting
ready for her date. When Terrence gets there, he starts rubbing
her back and Lisa moans and groans.
Lisa: "Have you ever done this
Terrence: "Not with anyone as pretty
Lisa: "You have done this before!"
He feeds her a melon and then talks
about choosing the best melon.
Terrence: "You gotta' get real close (he moves
closer) and feel it. Then you gotta smell it.
Terrence: "Of course, the skin should
be firm but supple."
Lisa: "Just the way I like it."
Terrence: "And it should want to
Lisa: "Oh, it wants to give."
[August 27, 2005]
To speak with a representative from the Parents Television Council, 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.
by Michael Rich, MD, MPH
by Senator Brownback
by Nell Minow "The Movie Mom"