The Broadcasting Commission (BCJ) is appealing to young people to adhere to the age ratings on radio and television programmes as this will prevent them from seeing or hearing content that could be harmful.
“When you see the ratings, don’t ignore them, because there are people, who have done studies on these things,” said the organisation’s Executive Director, Cordel Green during a presentation at the Mona High School in St. Andrew on Tuesday, February 5.
According to Mr. Green, broadcasters evaluate and rate all programming for violence, sex or problematic language and audiences are advised prior to the airing of the material.
He said that young children should not be allowed to watch programmes after 9:00 p.m. when they are expected to see and hear more adult-type conversations, movies or music on radio and television.
He also told the students to stay away from programmes rated A (Adult) or X (X-rated).
“Leave it, because you cannot escape it, at some point you are going to ‘buck-it-up’ somewhere, but that is 18 years and over. It sounds un-cool, but I am telling you there are people who have done research, who have established that when you come into this realm too young an age, it’s going to do harm and you learn it later, you don’t learn it now,” he stated.
Mr. Green also urged the Grades 10 and 11 students to ensure that their younger siblings do not watch material that is inappropriate for their age.
“When there is a programme rated for your age, it means that you have a responsibility to protect your younger brothers and sisters. You have people sitting down watching a PG 14 movie and your 10-year old brother and sister sitting down watching the very same movie. It is not right it, is not responsible. There is a reason it was rated PG 14,” he said.
The Children’s Code for Programming implemented in 2003 by the BCJ includes a watershed at 9:00 p.m. daily. A watershed is the time of day after which programming may become increasingly adult oriented. Children should be allowed to watch programmes rated G (General) or PG (Parental Guidance), he said.
The Mona session was part of a series by the BCJ under its media literacy project.