PTC: Nets are Underrating Violent Shows Compared To Cable

Also says media has done nothing to reduce violence

The Parents Television Council Monday accused the broadcast networks of underrating violent content on their air.

PTC said that based on its research, the volume of violent programming on broadcast and cable TV were about the same, but that broadcast TV shows underrated those shows as appropriate for 14-year-olds (TV14), while similar cable shows were rated for mature audiences (TVMA).

"Although every TV-14 show in the study contained graphic violence and included a V-descriptor for “intense” violence, not one TV-14 show was rated to warn parents of the presence of 'graphic' violence," PTC said. “As this report goes to print, nearly a year has passed since the tragic events at Sandy Hook Elementary School; yet the entertainment industry has done virtually nothing to reduce the flow of graphically violent media to children. Those concerned about media violence and its effects on society should be extremely disturbed by the findings of this new research report."

In response to the PTC study, TV Watch, the broadcaster-backed group formed to promote the TV ratings system as an alternative to government regulation of content, fired back.

“There have been 38 complaints to the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board this year, evidence to support the fact that 69 percent of parents have a favorable view of television ratings," said TV Watch Executive Director Jim Dyke. "The PTC will be the 39th unless they choose to turn on their online complaint campaign machine that was responsible for 99 percent of FCC complaints in 2003. The PTC's history of exaggerated numbers, flawed methodology and misleading or outright false claims suggests they are more interested in their own agenda rather than parents.”