Hollywood Launches Campaign About On-Screen Violence

Thursday, 28 Feb 2013 03:38 PM

By James Hirsen

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Ever since the Newtown, Conn., shooting that left 26 dead, including 20 children, Hollywood lobbyist groups and entertainment companies have been gearing up an extensive publicity campaign to help people make informed decisions when they watch violent material on television or in the movies.

The campaign has secured some major-league sponsors, like the Motion Picture Association of America, the National Association of Broadcasters, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, the National Association of Theater Owners, and the American Cable Association. Additionally, cable giants like DirecTV and Verizon FiOS are co-sponsoring the initiative.

However, organizations that represent the video game industry are noticeably absent from the list of benefactors, who met with Vice President Joe Biden in January.

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MPAA Chairman Chris Dodd requested that a meeting with Hollywood lobbyists associated with video games, along with any affiliated trade groups, take place separately from their campaign.

The PR campaign will reportedly include broadcast and cable advertising, Internet websites, and social media. The goal is to inform the public on ratings designations, content-blocking technology, and various options for media access.

Advertising will include footage produced by industry associations, broadcast and cable companies, and spots previously produced by the Ad Council. Movie theaters and multiplexes across the nation will display big-screen advertisements prior to the start of feature films, which will focus on parental options with respect to violent content.

The groups behind the PR campaign have redesigned a website, TV Boss.org, which already had an emphasis on television ratings and parental control technology. Also, campaigners have resurrected FilmRatings.com, which breaks down what movie ratings mean.

“The public service advertising and collateral materials featured throughout the campaign will help consumers better understand the TV and film rating systems, remind them to 'be the boss' of their TVs, encourage them to consume media together as families, and help children understand the media they consume,” the alliance of trade associations and entertainment companies said in a statement.

Related stories:

Dodd: Hollywood Won't Curb Film, Game Violence in Wake of Newtown Shooting

Video Game Players Call For Violence 'Ceasefire' in Light of Sandy Hook

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