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									FTC Issues Third Follow-Up Report on the Marketing of Violent
Entertainment to Children
Report Shows Progress in Ad Disclosures by Marketers of Movies, Music, and Electronic
Games; Compliance with Movie and Game Industry Restrictions on Ad Placements; but
Continued Placement of Ads in Some Media with Large Teen Audiences


The Federal Trade Commission today issued the third follow-up review of its September 2000 Report to Congress,
Marketing Violent Entertainment to Children: A Review of Self-Regulation and Industry Practices in the Motion Picture,
Music Recording and Electronic Game Industries. This new Report responds to requests from the Congressional
Committees on Appropriations and from 18 members of the House of Representatives.

To prepare this Report, the Commission tracked advertising placements in media popular with youth, and reviewed
advertisements in major media -- print, television, and the Internet -- to determine if they included clear and prominent
rating and labeling information. The Commission also reviewed retail packaging for products in each of the three
industries to assess the extent to which packaging complied with self-regulatory guidelines for each industry, and
included clear and prominent rating and labeling information.

The follow-up Report shows continued progress by the movie and electronic game industries and improvement by the
music industry in including rating information in advertising that would help parents identify material that may be
inappropriate for their children. The report also shows compliance by the movie and electronic games industries with
industry promises to limit ad placements, although the Report finds advertisements by all three industries continue to
appear in some media popular with teens.

Specific findings include:

             Movies
              The most-recent FTC Report finds that, as in the past two follow-up reports, the movie industry places
              virtually no ads for R-rated movies in popular teen magazines. It also finds continued compliance with
              an industry commitment not to advertise R-rated movies in venues with a youth audience share of 35
              percent or more. However, studios continue to advertise R-rated movies in television shows that are
              popular with teens. The Report states that while movie studios continue to make progress in including
              rating information and rating reasons in ads, some studios' rating disclosures are difficult to read.


             Music
              The Report concludes that the music industry continues to advertise music with explicit content on
              television shows and in print magazines popular with teens, but finds that the industry has made
              progress in placing the Parental Advisory Label in industry advertising. It notes that although the music
              industry's labeling program does not require that advertisers indicate why the label contains a parental
              advisory, one company, BMG Entertainment, has announced an initiative to specify on the label
              whether violent content, sexual content or strong language is responsible for the Parental Advisory
              Label, and to include the same information in its advertising.


             Electronic Games
              The Report finds widespread compliance in the game industry with standards limiting ads for M-rated
              games in media with audiences containing a high percentage of teens - 35 percent for television and 45
              percent for print. However, the Commission found examples of ads on some television programs
              popular with teens and in some youth-oriented game enthusiast magazines. The Report finds that the
              electronic game industry provides rating information prominently in most forms of advertising. The
              Report concludes that although some areas still could be improved, for example content descriptors in
              television advertising, there is much in the game industry's rating disclosure requirements that merits
              duplication by others.

The Commission will monitor the entertainment industry's marketing practices through next year, and will then issue a
follow-up report.

The Commission vote to issue the Report was 5-0, with Commissioner Orson Swindle issuing a concurring statement.

In his statement, Commissioner Swindle said, "I support continued Commission monitoring and reporting regarding
the marketing of violent entertainment to children. With our reports, we contribute helpful information to the public
debate on the extent to which such marketing targets children and teens and the means by which industry can
empower parents to make and enforce informed decisions about appropriate entertainment for their children."

"Nonetheless, the First Amendment appropriately limits what the government can do. Despite our scrutiny, the music
industry continues to target young people explicitly in its advertising and, for the most part, refuses to provide content-
based information that could help consumers. The motion picture and electronic game industries have acted far more
responsibly in improving their self-regulatory programs, yet continue to allow advertising of R-rated movies and M-
rated games in venues that attract large numbers of teens. To varying degrees, all of the industries fall short in
effectively communicating the rating or label as well as the reasons for it. What becomes clear as we continue with
our series of reports is that if the public wants a change in these marketing practices, the public must demand that
change and express its wishes in the currency of the marketplace."

Copies of the Report and Commissioner Swindle's statement are available from the FTC's web site at
http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC's Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.,
Washington, D.C. 20580. The FTC works for the consumer to prevent fraudulent, deceptive and unfair business
practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop and avoid them. To file a
complaint, or to get free information on any of 150 consumer topics, call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357),
or use the complaint form at http://www.ftc.gov. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft and other fraud-
related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to hundreds of civil and criminal law
enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

Media Contact:

         Cathy MacFarlane
         Office of Public Affairs
         202-326-3657

         Staff Contact:

         Richard Kelly
         Bureau of Consumer Protection
         202-326-3304
(FTC File No. P99 4511)

								
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