Huge spike in full nudity on prime-time TV: study
August 22, 2012 (LifeSiteNews) – Nudity on television is on the rise, and seen by younger eyes than ever, according to a recent study.
Full nudity on television shows rose by 403 percent during the 2011-2012 season from the previous season, according to the Parent Television Council’s study. Whereas in 2010-2011 there were 15 incidents of nudity in 14 shows, this rose the following year to 76 incidents in 37 shows.
The study also found that the traditionally family-friendly hours before 9 p.m. are now showcasing nudity with greater frequency, with 70% of the nude scenes occurring before 9 in 2012, compared to 50% the previous year.
The study also found that out of 76 instances of full nudity during the 2011–2012 study period, only five of those depictions occurred on shows that contained an “S” descriptor alerting parents to the explicit adult content.
The numbers are even more stark when looking at more explicit “full-frontal” nudity. Whereas there was only one instance of full-frontal nudity that occurred during the 2010–2011 study period, by the same time the following year, 64 instances of full-frontal nudity had aired - a 6300% increase.
Melissa Henson, Director of Communications and Public Education at Parent Television Council, told LifeSiteNews that this trend will have an adverse affect on Americans.
“It’s clear that television is a powerful educator, and it helps to shape our views about what is normal or acceptable,” she said. “And as long as television programs continue to disregard and undermine the values held by the majority of Americans, we will see those values eroding in the culture generally.”
Henson stressed a proactive stance in dealing with the trend. Parents “need to be vigilant in monitoring their children’s media use,” Henson said, and viewers also need to let networks hear their complaints.
“At the end of the day, the networks don’t much care if they insult or offend viewers with their programming, as long as they can find companies that are willing to continue paying for it,” she said. “Companies need to know that if they continue to pay for that kind of content, consumers have options and may choose to take their business elsewhere.”
Broadcasters that produce obscene material can be fined in America under the 2006 Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act.
In a lengthy court dispute between the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and two networks fined for indecency, the U.S. Supreme Court in January upheld the networks’ complaints over specific punishments, but vacated a lower court ruling finding the indecency law unconstitutional. One official said the FCC would immediately address the nearly 1.5 million complaints that had accumulated since the lawsuit put the agency’s operations on hold nine years ago.