Children shown TV violence

The Dominion Post 04 December 2008

Children  as young as 14 have been subjected to footage of rape, sadism and domestic violence as part of research directed by two broadcasting watchdogs. The Broadcasting Standards Authority (BSA) and the Office of Film and Literature Classification (OFLC) commissioned market researcher Colmar Brunton to pay each participant at least $60 to assess their attitudes toward violent content on film and television screens. The clips varied from “sadistic violence” in the film Hostel – shown only to participants over 18 – to the “highly emotional, and relatively recent, realistic” violence in Kiwi film Out of the Blue and “comedic violence” in animated television show Family Guy.

Those under 18 were shown scenes of attempted rape, graphic assaults and domestic violence in the movies Sin City and 8 Mile, as well as television show Heroes. Violent scenes from episodes of Mafia show The Sopranos, Crime Scene Investigation and the Brad Pitt film Fight Club were also shown.

..Family First lobby group spokesman Bob McCoskrie said he was horrified by the research, and said the fact that parents had consented for their children to take part “says something about the parents”. The research “was not scientifically sound” and people should be concerned about the violent material seen by young people, he said.