Monday, January 31, 2011

I Understand And I Wish To Continue

A few of my blogging friends have the “18 or older” warning to get into their blogs. I roll my eyes at it because I rarely see anything remotely “adult” on their blogs. And when it is there, it’s not usually something that bothers me.

It got me thinking what constitutes offensive on blogs. Swearing? Violence? Mentions of sex? Graphic mentions of sex? Okay, maybe that last one. Sex seems to be a button for people and anywhere their kids might possibly come across the dreaded s-e-x is monitored. I really think they should be more worried about the porn sites, but whatever.

Television is the same. Before some shows, there's a little warning about what it contains (sex, violence, language), usually in the form of a rating in the corner. The very act of sex on network TV is strictly regulated (how many people REALLY have sex with all that underwear/lingerie on?). Remember that whole Janet Jackson Superbowl boob thing? It was an accidental "nip slip" but people reacted like she and Justin Timberlake were having sex in front of the cameras instead of doing admittedly sexual moves (which were only criticized after the fact, mind you; most other sexy dancing is ignored). It still seems like an overreaction instead of just "It's a nipple. Everyone has them. Maybe it's kind of funny."

Don't get me started on books. Actually, I think I kind of went off on it already with the whole SPEAK thing. In any case, there is a lot of upset over sex scenes in YA literature despite the fact that they are important to the story (as in SPEAK, TWENTY BOY SUMMER and I suppose even TWILIGHT).

How far is too far? Is the line between appropriate and unseemly that hard to distinguish? And when does shielding from danger become sheltering from life?



  1. I don't see how asking if you are 18 or over or making sure you don't live in a restricted area is going to stop you.

    Sex, violence, drugs, drinking and anything else that is against the "proper" way to act will be viewed by those who shouldn't no matter what. I'm all for the parent of the child in question screening media before allowing THEIR child to view/use it. Rating systems help parents, but they shouldn't be the end all guide to what your child can watch.

    The amount of censoring done in America and Australia is absurd. I was shocked to find out that there is nudity in shows and commercials in Europe. I think the restrictive nature of America has messed with our children's minds, not an overexposure of these elements.

    It is good for them to see and then discuss what happened. We have to explain why this person did what they did, how it was wrong, and the alternatives. Not start blaming recording artists or movies or games.

    I feel a tad strongly on this, can definitely go on, but I think I already said to much. lol. :) Great post.

  2. Great post, I really agree with Kindros

  3. No no Kindros. It was great. I also think you make a good point when you say that asking whether or not your 18 isn't going to stop you. It reminds me of an old Onion headline that said something along the lines of "under 18 button clicked for first time on internet."

    And I agree with your points about having society instead of the parents decide what is and is not appropriate for their children to view/read. Yes, some kids are too immature to be exposed to these things, but it's stupid to restrict everyone of a comparable age. The best judge for whether or not a child is read is usually the parent.

  4. I agree with Kindros. I am all for parents making decisions for their young children, then talking over the decisions as the kids get older, then stepping back and letting their (nearly grown) kids make decisions and deal with what happens. How else to people learn to be functioning adults?

    As far as the warning: there is a box you can check in blogger. I've often thought about checking it, just for my own amusement when people ask, "Erm... why does your blog have a warning?" :)

  5. I am a middle school teacher. Because I blog about romance writing, it happens that I occasionally include sexual content. And since I write under my real name, a Google search could find my blog easily. So my school admin requested I put the content warning up as a nod to keeping my students off my blog. Of course, what 12 year old is not going to just click that they're over 18?
    Personally, if a parent is going to be offended because their kid found my blog, the parent should first look to themselves and whether or not they supervise their kid's online activities.

  6. I don't think certain things should be posted at all on blogs and on facebook. I just feel that certain things be left private and not posted for all the world to hear or see. That is just my opinion.

  7. I really agree with Kindros on this topic. I was veeeery surprised when I found out how lax things are in Europe compared to America when it comes to sex and nudity.

    But, honestly, that seems like the better policy to me. When you treat sex like a dirty secret, what are kids supposed to think? Censorship is getting to the point where it's doing more harm than good.

  8. Kindros has it straight. I mean. Um. When I was under 18 that didn't stop me at all. It's just a button.

    Umm. I totally don't know what to say. Yeah. We seem to have a different approach here. I mean there's the 9pm watershed period but generally anything goes after that.

    I think I like the way it's done here, mostly. It seems to be a kind of "if you don't like it don't read/watch/look at it or allow your children" thing which is sensible.


  9. By extension, look at what the MPAA does. Violence and the so called Torture porn genre get a pass, but movies that actually say something like The Kings' Speech get flagged for cursing.


Please validate me.