Friday, May 9, 2014

Appropriate Ratings

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Many parents and guardians don't realize what they are letting their kids watch on television. Showing maturely rated and violent shows on TV can affect the behavior of kids in the future and present day. Although parents may not take the action of blocking these shows, the shows may not be as strictly rated as they should be. There is a responsibility to rate TV shows and movies, but most parents disregard the ratings and its affecting the youth of our society.

Many shows have profanity, sexuality, and violence in them, which is screwing the vision of today’s generation of kids. Kids at a young age believe what they see on tv, there for sex, violence, and profanity seem as if they are a normal behavior that they can preform. Violence, more so than the others, is put into kids’ shows, such as cartoons. These cartoons teach the kids that it is normal in society to perform violent acts. This also leads to bullying in school when these kids are imitating their favorite ninja turtle or Pokemon by beating up on the weaker kids at school. A study was done with a younger audience and “many thought violence was comic and had few consequences.” Violent TV shows a teaching their youth audience that violence is a common behavior among everyone, especially their heroes. This causes to acts of violence at school which results in bullying. Violence in children's’ shows are teaching kids that violence is common in everyday behavior.

Parents and guardians make naive decisions that influence their kid’s way of thinking. Before every show is aired that specific show is required to show the rating for 15 seconds before it starts. That’s not a very long time to inform the audience of the rating. With that being said it might not always be the adult’s fault but the program’s fault. The parent should still be paying close attention what their kids are watching at a young age. Now TVs have something called a V-chip which is the technical term for parental guidance. The V-chip allows the parents to regulate and block certain channels and shows with specific ratings. This give parents no excuse for letting their kids watching inappropriate shows while they are gone. It’s the parents’ responsibility to apply the parental guidance to the TV setting to protect their children from mature material.

Some might think the ratings aren't as harshly enforced nor rated as they should be. There are seven different different TV ratings and four of them are directed for kids. All of the ratings are meant for kids seven and older. The average kid aged 2-11 watches four hours of TV a day. That means over half of the kids are watching TV that is not appropriate for them. These TV shows that are supposedly appropriate for 7-year olds contain "mild fantasy violence or comedic violence that may scare younger kids”(TV-Y), “fantasy violence may be more intense in these programs than others in the TV-Y7 rating”(TV-Y7), and “little to no violence, sexual dialogue
or content, or strong language”(TV-G). These ratings should not be including violence in the rating if they are targeted for 7 year olds.

In todays world there is a lot more inappropriate information available to a younger audience and not enough restrictions put on this information. Parents now have the ability to block certain shows on TV and prevent inappropriate information from reaching their kids minds at too young of an age. The ratings can also deceive the parents because violence is now in the majority of shows and movies. This violence is tampering with the minds of our youth causing bullying in schools. With everyone's help we can sensor what our kids see on TV and prevent inappropriate behavior in the future.


Conclusion, update May 30 2014
During my experience writing my first blog I learned how interesting it can be to do research on a topic  that interested me and share my results with the wold.  I really enjoyed watching the constant increases of people reading my blog for reference for the topic I chose.  It really inspired me to publish  more research or work that I do because with out resources such as blogs and other website publish their work, I would not be able to access the information needed to find out more information for school or personal interest.  Also the comments I received on my blog gave me even more scenarios that I did not think of and made me reconsider my point of view of the side that I took in the argument that I gave.  In the end I remained on the side that I took but maybe in the future someone will persuade me to completely change my point of view on something by giving me a new scenario that a may not think of.  This would increase my knowledge of on a topic that I enjoy or improve my argument in a paper for school.   I really enjoyed this blog project because I found much more information on a topic that was familiar to me but also had a lot of unexplored information that I found to be very fascinating. I'm very excited for this to be my first true publicly published piece that can be I can be traced back to.


  1. Hi Declan: I found your discussion of TV violence and child audiences to be very compelling. The rating system sounds like a useful approach to help parents regulate their children's TV viewing. I agree with your point that ratings still seem to allow too much violence. I read elsewhere > that the system has other flaws, including the fact that it is the shows' creators who do the rating, and do not provide adequate information on the type of content in the programs. Do you think viewers (like parents) should have more say in the rating system? Thank you for writing on this topic. --Ms. Riches

  2. I like how you explored the different dimensions of the TV ratings system. The three major angles of how shows are rated, how parents manage, and how poorly rated shows impact society were well argued. One additional argument you can add is that cartoons do promote violence because to a child an animated piece on TV is just as real as a live action piece.

    One grammatical suggestion: 'which is screwing the vision of today’s generation of kids' - the word 'screwing' makes sense in a conversation, but is not necessarily appropriate for a formal written piece. Try 'clouding' or 'damaging'.

    1. Thanks for the great feedback! Screwing was just a typo I actually meant skewing. I understand how screwing would confuse you in a formal piece.

  3. Declan, thank you for exploring this topic. We have heard the president of Common Sense Media say that today's television is the "Wild West" of standards, meaning anything goes. Do you think our Congress, or other regulatory agencies, should be enforcing these ratings systems more? Should there be standards in advertising toward kids? "Family hours" during which all programming must be suitable for children? Though I absolutely agree with you that parents need to be paying more attention to what their kids are watching, or watching along with them, it's an uphill battle in today's media saturation age. This is a tough one. A V-chip sounds like a nice idea, but it doesn't replace the need for good teaching, clear expectations, and open conversation with your kids about what they see on television. Given all the evidence of harm done to kids by over exposure, why hasn't anything been done about content?

  4. Hi Declan,
    Great blog post! You've tackled a very interesting subject. I think a V-chip would be helpful to many families - children are unable to view dangerous material and parents don't have to worry about them breaking rules to see this material. I read in another article ( that in a survey, 80% of parents said that they would rather have a rating system based on content instead of age. How do you think this would change the number of children that are exposed to violence on TV?

    1. Thats a very interesting concept Kate. I think if tv ratings were based on content I think that it wouldn't provokes kids to want to see show that are meant for an older audience because the age isn't shown. On the other hand parents might need some guidance on what to let there kids watch and not knowingly show them a show or movie that is inappropriate for their age. There are pros and cons that both rating systems.

  5. Hi Declan! This is a great post about the rating system of TV shows. I agree with you that parents should be aware of the TV shows that their kids are watching because the kids are getting information from the TV shows they watch. However, to me, my parents never made a restriction about what I should watch and shouldn't watch. They talked to me to clarify the inappropriate shows and tell me that is not a good thing for m to watch it. I think that we can't protect our kids from getting wrong information from the inappropriate shows just by blocking the shows. Curiosity might leads them to watch it. Parents need to teach their child that the things they see on TV shows are not real, and lead them to the right direction. Also, as you wrote, there are a lot of inappropriate TV shows and movies on screens, and the kids should not watch the. What about adults? Why do adults can watch those? Will these shows do harm to adults too?

    1. Thats a great take on the situation Mona! I do have to agree with you about parents teaching kids about what is wrong and right but I still think that kids shouldn't be exposed to certain material until they are older so they can fully understand what they are seeing and form their own opinions about it. Adults have the right to watch what them want on because they should have by then formed their own opinions about what is right and wrong and be able to differentiate between the two. Although the have the right to watch what ever they want doesn't mean they should because some things on tv push it to the extreme of right and wrong and would be disturbing to anyone.

  6. Hey Declan! Great Work! I agree that it is the parents responsibility to be aware of what their children are watching. But, even though I think the V-chip is pretty cool since sometimes families can be busy and cannot constantly be watching over their children's television use, it could shelter the children. Plus, sheltering their children could just increase their curiosity in what you want them not watching. In my opinion, parents should not block television shows but rather make their children aware of what is these shows that maybe be inappropriate or rated for more mature audiences. Why do you think we try to shelter children from things that they will eventually learn anyways?

  7. Wow taylor thats a great way to look at it, I never thought of it that way. I think parents are trying to shelter their kids from inappropriate information while they are young so the kids don't start picking up on the inappropriate behavior the see. Although the kids will eventually learn it their minds wont be able to comprehend what they are seeing in a mature fashion because they don't have background knowledge certain things that would help explain what they are seeing. This way parents choose to block certain show that has inappropriate information in them.


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