Age-ratings call for music DVDs

Remote control The Bailey report said parents want more control over what their children watched

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In a bid to protect children from over-sexualised imagery, the government is to consult on whether music DVDs should have movie-style age ratings.

There are also proposals for online music videos to have warnings if they contain explicit content.

This follows a review last year by Reg Bailey into the commercialisation and sexualisation of childhood.

Mr Bailey, head of the Mothers' Union, said such labelling would help protect children from "unsuitable material".

Last summer, Mr Bailey published a government-commissioned report addressing parental concerns that children were growing up surrounded by too much sexualised imagery.

It reflected fears that parents could not protect their children from inappropriate images, such as over-sexualised music videos.

Music videos

It called for age ratings for music videos - suggesting these should influence the times when such videos could be broadcast on television.

The government is now setting out further steps in response to the report.

Start Quote

It's clear that many parents are fed up with their children being surrounded by adult images as they grow up”

End Quote Sarah Teather Children's Minister

This includes a consultation on extending age ratings to music DVDs, when it says "most are currently exempt" from such controls.

For young people viewing videos on the internet - there are calls for clearer warnings of unsuitable content.

It also calls for a way of allowing parents to filter out music and videos aimed at an adult audience.

"Ending the exemptions from age classification for hard copy music videos will be an important step forward in making sure that children are not inadvertently exposed to unsuitable material," said Mr Bailey.

"It will send a strong signal to producers of music videos intended for online distribution or broadcast of what is acceptable if they want to reach the correct audience. This is a major concern for parents."

Children's Minister Sarah Teather said: "It's clear that many parents are fed up with their children being surrounded by adult images as they grow up and being targeted aggressively to get the latest 'must-have' items.

"Being a parent is a tough job at the best of times. The onus has to be on industry to stop undermining parents trying to bring up their own children, the way they want."

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