Popular MTV programs
MTV is the most watched television station for teens and young adults. Since 1983 MTV (Music Television) has been ruling the glowing box in American homes with controversial programming aimed at young people. While this channel started as music focused it has evolved into popular reality shows, drama, and rarely music. Most of the time when a teens and even children have the TV on it consistently is tuned into MTV. Knowing this, parents and adults should become familiar with the type of programming these young minds are viewing. Here you will find a quick look at several popular MTV shows. To get more information about MTV programming go to www.mtv.com.
School, & 90210 Pg.4 • Age of star role models •
The Parent Source is composed by: Upside Down Ministries www.ud4christ.com Teen Culture Specialist Robert Smith P O Box 232 Lawton, Ok 73502 firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of you may have seen the MTV show My Super Sweet 16, a show where spoiled 15 year olds throw over the top sweet 16 parties at the expense of their parents. The teens spend thousands of dollars and receive their expensive dream cars. Most episodes showed the birthday boy or girl as being unappreciative and disrespectful towards their parents. In an interesting turn of events MTV has recently released a new show called Exiled based on these same teens. Parents of these over privileged teens decide to teach their child to appreciate what they have by sending them to a remote part of the world. Some are sent to Africa, The Arctic Circle, or India where they must live and work with a native family, learning what it means to work hard for simple things like food or water. All of this is in an effort to show the spoiled teen what hard work is like and to open their eyes to the living conditions of others around the world.
In each half-hour episode, Sex and Relationship expert Dr. Drew will help a teen and their parents work through their problems about sex, dating and relationships. Maybe a dad is worried that his daughter uses her sexuality to get attention; a son is concerned that ever since he came out of the closet, his parents haven't acted the same towards him; or a "ladies man" has mom worried that sex, and the girls he sleeps with, mean nothing to him. Whatever the issue, Dr. Drew will get the family talking -- often for the very first time -- about sex and intimate relationships. Initially, the family meets with him in a neutral setting to get the conversation started and pinpoint the family's main issue. At the end of the session, he'll send the family on their way with two tasks, tailored specifically to their issue, and designed to get them to open up about their sexual beliefs and experiences. The show premiered September 29th at 7pm on MTV. This show could be great for parents to watch together and open up their own conversation about sex. However, do know that the show does not offer Godly morals towards sexuality. Sex outside of marriage, multiple partners, and homosexuality will be portrayed as normal.
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High School Stories
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For more information on MTV programming go to www.mtv.com. 2
Family T.V.? Some of the most popular television shows right now with all ages are crime fighting shows with forensic specialists and clever detectives. CSI, Law and Order, Bones, CSI:Miam, and CSI:NY have captured the American audience. In 2007 nearly 84 million
people watched CSI, making it the most watched show in the world. While the suspense and mystery of the show is intriguing the violence and gore is becoming more and more prominent. Parents need to know that their family might see strong doses of blood, drug use, and risqué sexual situations. Stories of cannibalism, a woman murdered and then fed to dogs, teens making pornographic films are disturbingly a lot of what we see in these shows lately. Several of these shows, for example CSI, have been rated TV Mature for violence. Perhaps the competition between these types of shows causes them to push the envelope with each new episode. If that is the case, where will they go next? How much more gruesome could it get?
Charm School VH1’s rock of love charm school— 14 wild party girls from former reality show Rock of Love are challenged by mentor Sharon Osbourne (Rocker Ozzy Osbourne’s wife) to trade in their old lifestyles of excessive drinking, stripping, hooking-up, fighting and other crude behaviors for ladylike behavior. Although a lifestyle change can be a positive thing Charm School seems to focus more on the raunchy behavior these girls are trying to leave behind. The commercial that advertises this show is packed full of sexually provocative material. If it is any indication of the show itself its sure to be pretty risky. It’s set to debut on vh1 Sept.12.
Same Zip code, new drama.
An edgy, modern version of the popular 90’s teen drama “Beverly Hills, 90210,” The new “90210” looks at life through the eyes of Annie Wilson, Whose father has just moved his family (wife, and two teenagers) from small town life in Kansas back to his roots in Beverly Hills to be the principal at west Beverly Hills High. Just as the original show tested it’s boundaries in the 90’s the new version does the same. Within the first 15 minutes of the series premiere a male high school student is given oral sex. Although the actual act is not shown it was clearly insinuated. The rest of the series premiere followed suit with sexual overtones, drug use, and lots of rich spoiled teens buying whatever they wanted. The CW airs this show and has high hopes that its strong teen following will bring their station out of a recent rating slump. 3 3
Popular media often determines the newest fashion trends, slang words and acceptable behavior. More often than not teens are trying to reach an unrealistic goal. Have you noticed that the majority of leading teen characters in most TV shows have perfect bodies, flawless skin and a great sense of fashion? That’s probably because most of the time these characters are being played by people who are much older. Take Adrianne Palicki for instance, she plays high school student Tyra Collette in the popular teen show Friday Night Lights. She plays the part of the pretty party girl that all the guys want. All though she plays the role of a high school student she is 25 in real life. It would be beyond absurd for a 15 year old girl to think that she could look like a 25 year old woman, but that is often the bar popular media sets. Consider Ed Westwick who plays high school student Chuck Bass in the controversial yet very popular Gossip Girl. Chuck is the hot bad boy who all the girls want and he has the money to do whatever he wants to do. Although he plays the role of a rebellious teen on TV he is 21 in real life. When teens try to achieve these unrealistic goals they are only setting themselves up for failure. Their idea of what a teen should look like is being set by adults who have outgrown many of the awkward stages that come with being a teen.
Behold the power of modern technology.
With most extended cable packages and with companies like Direct TV or Satellite TV there are many features that parents can utilize for their good. Check it out.
These types of te levision service of fer parental setti block a specific ch ngs. You can annel or any prog ramming of a cer “Mature” rated tain rating, like shows. The only way a blocked pr watched is to en og ra m can be ter a pass code tha t only you as the parent know.
deo ng for “Digital vi di an st VR D d lle ows for a Also a feature ca gs for specific sh in rd co re t se to used vantage to this recording” can be recording. The ad s rie se a or g in s to view at one time record en relevant show te rd co re to y you e abilit recording a show as a parent is th by so Al t. en nt co spect the ows you a later time to in only watch the sh d an TV s les int s po through tend to watch les can fast forward u yo s nu bo d an adde isement into your really enjoy. As e flood of advert th d oi av d an the commercials home.
For advice and information on how to be in control of your cable and set parental controls check out these sites: www.controlyourtv.org, www.thetvboss.org, www.tvblanket.com, www.familysafemedia.com 4
Kids Are Getting Older Younger What is “KAGOY”? According to doubletongued.org, it is “a marketing concept based on the idea that children participate in pop culture or desire material goods intended for older consumers.” KAGOY is an acronym for Kids Are Getting Older Younger and is also called age compression. This is a new marketing term, which toy companies and advertising companies alike are using to target young children with advertising. Marketers are realizing that there are many advantages to aiming at preteen aged children. The preteen brain is still developing therefore leading them to make more impulsive decisions. “a marketing concept based on They also have a fear of rejection by their peer group, which leads to wanting to have ‘what the other kids have’ so they can fit in. the idea that children partici-
What marketers know about kid consumers:
pate in pop culture or desire for
⇒ Parents who feel guilty about not spending enough time with their children will material goods intended make up for it by buying them expensive toys or giving them more money to older consumers.” spend themselves. ⇒ Kids are insistent on getting what they want from their parents. If they see something they “have to have” they will not stop begging for it until they get it, which means that children influence the family’s purchases. ⇒ Brand loyalty can be established in children as young as 2 years old! Marketers know that if they can win over children at toddler to preschool ages, they can have their loyalty for life. You may have noticed this already if you have small children. They can recognize logos for restaurants, toys, and even cars!
Advertising to children has led to toys becoming more sophisticated to keep that ‘edge’ that makes one toy superior over another. This has fostered age compression trying to market more grown up things to children and preteens. The average 2-11 year old sees anywhere from 25,000-40,000 TV commercials a year. Toy and clothing commercials are not the only ads with an effect on children; food commercials have also become a cause for concern. Food is the most frequently advertised product on US children’s television. Greater TV use has been associated with higher intakes of energy, fat, sweet and salty snacks, and carbonated beverages and lower intakes of fruit and vegetables. Progress to put laws in place to help regulate and limit advertising to children has been slow.
So how can you combat the thousands of ads and commercials your child is bombarded with? 1.
Limit media use: Try setting some boundaries for how much time is allowed watching TV, surfing the Internet, or any other type of media they are exposed to. Talk about marketing ploys: Help your children understand the truth behind misleading ads, and point out the values they either encourage or undermine. Set a good example: Do you find yourself getting caught up in the ‘gotta have it’ syndrome? It’s more difficult for a child to not find their worth and value in things if they see their parents chasing after the latest gadget or clothing label. Help foster a healthy environment for self‐worth in your family by letting your children see you using self control in your own spending habits. 5
Parent Discussion Questions: 1. What MTV shows do your kids consistently watch? How much do you know about these shows? 2. What potential negative messages, if any, are sent to kids through shows like CSI, Charm School, or 90210? 3. What are your kids favorite shows? 4. How do you feel popular â€œteenâ€? roles affect how your kids view themselves? 5. How can you use the cable provider you use to protect your household from inappropriate programming? 6. How do you feel Kagoy affects your kids? Have you seen your kids pursuing older things at a younger age? 7. How does advertisement affect your kids? What products has advertising persuaded your kids to want?