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Old 03-04-2004, 10:05 AM   #1 (permalink)
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MTV and FCC and Rant

Hi, i wasn't sure where to put this, so i thought..politics bc it seems politically driven..


imagine: 3:30 a.m. you've just had a long day, you get out of the shower and you're sitting down to sketch in your sketchbook and listen/watch music videos. First, it seems..Music television only means music at 3 a.m....but that's another story..

So, you're sitting and drawing and watching some new vids and life is dandy..then you hear the familiar beat of "This Love" by Maroon 5, one of my fave songs/videos. The vid is pretty simple and elegant and catchy. There is a couple in a bedroom and a band on a sandy stage with a red backdrop and interspersed shots between the two. pretty simple, has a pretty message, etc.

So..first time you see it, it's pretty racy, but NOTHING compared to most rap videos with the bootyshaking. This one has the couple engaged in some topless, harmless forplay with nothing really showing other than the girl's underwear. Her unclothed upper body is pressed against the guy's unclothed upper body, so you're given glimpses of nothing, really, but yet..at 3:30 a.m. you start hoping...j/k. Still, nothing that you wouldn't see on..well, probably 90% of network TV.

So..first time you see it, nothing is really edited/cut, all the lyrics are there and the bodies are there and it's a really catchy, upbeat song. No big deal, i totally recommend this song for anyone who's ever been in a turmultuous relationship.

3 weeks go by, and you see the song again and notice they cut out, "keep her coming everynight, so hard to keep her satisfied" They just mouth the words "her coming" with no sound from the vocalist. Ok, i could pooosssiiibbblllyyyy see how that's offensive, but it doesn't detract much from anything, other than i hate edited for content anything..

another month goes by, all's well.
then a few more days and you're watching again..Now..instead of getting a full vid, etc, whatyou're treated to is one of the most horrendous panderings to anyone who may be offended by anything...Seriously, the vid is just like normal, except that anytime you see the couple or even just the guy w/out his shirt on, you're treated to moving flowers across their bodies. I'm talking computer generated moving flowers that destroy the entire video. At first, i thought MTV was going to put up a promotion for something during the vid, then i realized it was part of the vid now...and it seriously pisses me off that they would edit out something like that and make it more raunchy by making it more mysterious. Now people will think they are getting it on or something instead of just making out/whatever, and it's just INSULTING to anyone with any bit of common sense. It makes you feel like a child when you're given all of something, then having it slowly stripped away in front of you.

I know it's a stupid thing to get upset over a video, but i am seriously seeing this as a threat to our freedom of expression. This is akin to putting a fig leaf over the statue of david, (they did that in my city when any depiction is shown of that statue..) But seriously, this video was well within any guidelines and has been slowly changed into a 'safe for anyone under the age of 2' show. I am waiting for them to start depicting married couples in separate beds again...I mean, i just hate having regulations that restrict what you can honestly watch. The most damning thing, though, is that the next vid was "Toxic" by britney spears...in completely unedited glory...as if that wasn't sexual enough to warrant editing...
Gee..a 20something yr old girl in a skincolored bodysuit with jewels isn't as offensive as a topless guy..Hmmmm...

And i will admit that all this happened after the janet jackson halftime debacle, but COME ON!! it was a breast...on one of the most watched events of the year. I'm talking about a girl's back and a guy's front on 3 a.m. non-basic cable.

Sorry for the incredibly long diatribe here, I'm just frustrated with censorship and editing and the lack of another form of expression or harsher guidelines or whatever. It's just annoying to me that something was well into the guidelines 2 months ago, but is now deemed too expressive or too sexual to be shown in the same manner.

I think i'm going to start an anti-censorship club.

(mods, if this is wrong place or totally out there, move or delete, i dont' want to ruffle any of those feathers, i'm just looking for a place to vent/receive comments on the current censorship of the media)
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Old 03-04-2004, 10:19 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I completely understand your frustration.

A few years ago I was watching "Holiday Inn" on AMC.

For those of you unfamiliar with it, it's an old b&w film with Fred Astair and Bing Crosby where they open the "Holiday Inn" that only opens on holidays.

Anyway, I'm pretty familiar with the film so I was shocked when they completely cut out the "President's Day" scene, presumably because there is black face going on (white people getting made up as black people).

While I understand this is not PC today, THAT'S HOW IT WAS BACK THEN!

I guess I would have been happier if they just hadn't broadcast the film rather than butchering it.
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Old 03-04-2004, 10:26 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I think the stations are going overboard, hoping that they get left alone and congress will forget about it. I do think some shows were going a bit to far for the current American mores (not me but then again, I'm a occasional swinger, I'm hardly normal America), and they would rather pretend to care then have it legislated.
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Old 03-04-2004, 10:29 AM   #4 (permalink)
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It's not just tv and radio people. WAL-Mart, that beloved company, censors everything they put on thier shelves. Try finding the unedited versions of G-N-R records or better yet, try finding a version of a movie that hasn't had the nudity either cut down to almost nothing or completely taken out. YET THEY WILL STILL HAVE EVERY BULLET PIERCING, EVERY BOMB BLOWING LIMBS OFF, EVERY BLOOD SPLATTERED SCENE INTACT.

Makes me wonder when and why nudity and sex became taboo but murder and violence are not only ok but praised.
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Old 03-04-2004, 10:43 AM   #5 (permalink)
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oh yea..i forgot, violence is TOTALLY fine, but sexuality isn't!!!!

and walmart..don't get me started...

oORRR, i was watching the tv version of "Robin Hood, Men in Tights" a complete farce of a comedy. Hilarious with both innuendo and violence...

Guess which gets edited out..
just one example, the line, "He's gonna deflower her in the tower" gets cut..3 minutes later, the scene where the sword goes through the sheriff of rottingham is shown in full glory...admittedly, it's not even close to realistic, but a kid doesn't know that, yet that's considered safe whereas a line about sex is strictly taboo.

Heaven forbid some kid asks mommy, "What does deflower mean and why did you laugh" but yet is able to watch people get shot and killed every day on regular tv..

I will totally admit that *SOMETIMES* stations and shows go a bit overboard, but i would still rather be allowed to say that then say, "hey, why did they put little flowers all over someone's body...." Seriously, EVERYONE here has seen more skin at a local pool or a beach than that video even came close to showing. If you haven't, i suggest a trip to a local pool.

And yeah, when i saw it, i was really upset. Not bc of the video itself, but of what it represents.
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Old 03-04-2004, 10:45 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Walmart's movies are edited???
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Old 03-04-2004, 11:27 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lebell
Walmart's movies are edited???
Yeah, I'm not sure about that either. I know Wal-Mart refuses to sell certain products, and they cover the front of magazines, and they tend to push books like the Left Behind series, but I don't think they censor movies.
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Old 03-04-2004, 11:31 AM   #8 (permalink)
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That's why I don't buy media at Wal-Mart. I go to Best Buy. They don't edit anything, plus it's probably just as cheap/cheaper.

As for MTV...I'm not going to start on that...
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Old 03-04-2004, 11:34 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Old 03-04-2004, 12:06 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally posted by Lebell
Walmart's movies are edited???
I don't know about movies (though a little google search didn't produce anything) but they do commision walmart edits for for tons of cds.
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Old 03-04-2004, 12:43 PM   #11 (permalink)
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And let's not forget the stupid "we won't sell a pregnant Barbie" fiasco
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Old 03-04-2004, 01:20 PM   #12 (permalink)
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WalMart and MTV are private organizations which have the right to censor anything they want to -- however, I think that WalMart should be obligated to mark their censored goods with a sticker of some sort as to not mislead customers. That said, I will never purchase any media from WalMart for this very reason, and I don't have cable so I've never had to cancel MTV.
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Old 03-04-2004, 01:24 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally posted by Lebell
Walmart's movies are edited???
Yes.
They commision edited versions from the studios and given to their volume ordering and size, they get what they want.
Walmart has always been the shining example of why business shouldn't be left unregulated or trusted.
No company will ever look out for the interests of the consumer, so the consumer must look out for themselves.
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Old 03-04-2004, 01:49 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by arch13
No company will ever look out for the interests of the consumer, so the consumer must look out for themselves.
This statement is highly ironic based on the context of the discussion.

You could argue that wal-mart IS looking out for the interests of its customers, and giving them what they want. You or I don't want family safe videogames, music, or movies, but a shitload of people out there do. They can shop at Walmart and know that they won't accidentaly get material they find offensive.
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Old 03-04-2004, 02:01 PM   #15 (permalink)
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That's just the point tho Wal-mart will sell the bloddiest, goriest, movies and video games out there, UNEDITED. But let there be a hint of nudity and sex and.....
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Old 03-04-2004, 02:03 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Originally posted by pan6467
That's just the point tho Wal-mart will sell the bloddiest, goriest, movies and video games out there, UNEDITED. But let there be a hint of nudity and sex and.....
Thats the culture, don't blame wal-mart for american culture.
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Old 03-04-2004, 02:19 PM   #17 (permalink)
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We are programming our children and have been for 20 years that sex and nudity are evil, but we are also conditioning them to believe violence is ok and fun.

Offer a teen today the choice between a seriously violent movie or a porn and I'd say 75% of the kids would choose the violent movie. What does that say about our country?

Aw well let's regale and cherish talk show hosts talk about how they name targets after SITTING PRESIDENTS and thier wives. Let's have talk show hosts totally spin everything so far right and shows no respect at all for any member of congress that disagrees with his ideologies, (that as my conservative dad says, "anyone believing a word out of his mouth needs to have a sanity test").

BUT FOR THE KIDS WE'LL BAN, CENSOR AND MAKE LAWS ABOUT SEXUAL ISSUES.

Makes sense to me ................. IF you are building a military minded country that you plan to use for wars.

PS All this reversing of history on how right Vietnam was and the attitudes that we did no wrong are not only laughable but fucking scary.
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I just love people who use the excuse "I use/do this because I LOVE the feeling/joy/happiness it brings me" and expect you to be ok with that as you watch them destroy their life blindly following. My response is, "I like to put forks in an eletrical socket, just LOVE that feeling, can't ever get enough of it, so will you let me put this copper fork in that electric socket?"
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Old 03-04-2004, 02:27 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I am not blaming walmart for american culture, but i'm gonna partly blame the media for that...and walmart is just an extension of that.

I will not, however, argue that america is a violent country, founded in violence and distress, and puritanical in other regards...

Kind of a funny dichotomy, if you ask me. Still, the media caters and walmart follows, at least in some aspects.

I just got REALLY pissed at paying $14 for a CD at walmart that had all the curse words blanked out. The cd was not labelled any differently than the best buy version, but it was most definitely a different cd. What's worse is that there was only 1 song with very few cursewords in it...(stabbing westward's save yourself has one line saying, "I look just as f**ked up as you" and they just blank out F*****P" which totally messes with singing the song. i would have had NO problem fi they just would have said something like "Edited for walmart" on the package. Again, it's a small thing to bicker over, but it's the general point, i paid for the NONRADIO version of a song and i ended up with a radio edit...grrrr

ps. I hate the ice cream trucks that ride around my neighborhood playing that stupid "and you tie him in a bow" song on bells..WTFAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG Violence and sex on tv won't make me go on a murderous rampage, but 30 minutes of the same tune...oh yea..send me after any terrorist country, they'll be gone in an hour..
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Old 03-04-2004, 02:30 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Love the rant on the ice cream music......... actually made me laugh.... thank you for adding humor to my day.
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I just love people who use the excuse "I use/do this because I LOVE the feeling/joy/happiness it brings me" and expect you to be ok with that as you watch them destroy their life blindly following. My response is, "I like to put forks in an eletrical socket, just LOVE that feeling, can't ever get enough of it, so will you let me put this copper fork in that electric socket?"
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Old 03-08-2004, 12:18 AM   #20 (permalink)
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update on this:
i just saw the VH1 version and it is COMPLETELY UNEDITED!!!

you still don't see anything other than a back or a guy's chest, but there are NO FREAKING FLOWERS going everywhere there is skin!!!!

And this is VH1, the music station that is not nearly as edgy as MTV...

MTV=wimps at the moment...

OOOO, this is aggravating

and "pop goes the weasel" should NEVER be allowed on ice cream trucks
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Old 03-08-2004, 01:25 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Also an update:

So far I've found absolutely no evidence that Walmart gets edited versions of movies.

As a matter of fact, I just bought "Meaning of Life" there and all the racy stuff is still in it.
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Old 03-08-2004, 09:26 AM   #22 (permalink)
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yeah..i was looking around and i don't believe they do sell edited movies. I think they just limit what they do sell, depending on content, as most places do.

I do know they sell edited versions of cds, just not sure if they are edited for walmart or for other venues as well
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Old 03-08-2004, 09:45 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Paq
update on this:
i just saw the VH1 version and it is COMPLETELY UNEDITED!!!
I think it depends on when you watch it. I've seen both versions on VH1. The first in all it's unedited glory and later on that night/morning?? I saw the flower fest.

In the edited version they say "my ________ diggin in your skin."
Isn't the word "fingers?"

What's the harm in that? Do I have the line wrong?

Oh yeah, sudden censoring of videos by a corporation pandering to a fickle and indecisive society is insulting those of us who actually use our minds for cognitive thought. I know what I'm getting when I watch MTV and VH1, I'm an adult, I know how to monitor what minors in my house are watching and I know how to operate the remote. This sudden censoring of videos is only going to last as long as the public interest lasts, which if the past is any indicator, won't be long.

Censorship on any scale is still censorship and implies that I'm too stupid to make viewing decisions by myself and need someone to do it for me. I didn't like it when I was 12, I sure don't dig it now.
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Old 03-08-2004, 10:36 AM   #24 (permalink)
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I was so high I did not recognize
The fire burning in her eyes
The chaos that controlled my mind
Whispered goodbye and she got on a plane
Never to return again
But always in my heart

This love has taken its toll on me
She said Goodbye too many times before
And her heart is breaking in front of me
I have no choice cause I won't say goodbye anymore

I tried my best to feed her appetite
Keep her coming every night
So hard to keep her satisfied
Kept playing love like it was just a game
Pretending to feel the same
Then turn around and leave again

This love has taken its toll on me
She said Goodbye too many times before
And her heart is breaking in front of me
I have no choice cause I won't say goodbye anymore

I'll fix these broken things
Repair your broken wings
And make sure everything's alright
My pressure on her hips
Sinking my fingertips
Into every inch of you
Cause I know that's what you want me to do


http://www.lyricattack.com/m/maroon5...ovelyrics.html

Anyway, the only line i heard bleeped was the "keep her ****** every night, so hard to keep her satisfied"

And if vh1 has 2 versions...i can actually understand a TEENSY bit of the mindset there..don't play the unedited version whne children could see it, play the unedited version at 3 am when i would see it...it's still stupid, but it's more ballsy than MTV....

and i'm with you..i HATE censorship, it means i am not allowed to moderate what I want to watch. Damn, a lot of I's in that sentence, but this IS about me and what I want to do and what I should be able to do.

As an artist, i'd be PISSED if someone desecrated my work bc they didn't want a breast to be shown. admittedly, i wouldnt' show it on network tv, but what he was showing was NOTHING compared to others and was clearly within the guidelines when it was created...heck, grandfather it in..something...sheeeesh, it makes me ill.
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Old 03-08-2004, 11:05 AM   #25 (permalink)
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thats what i hate about censoring, it's completly fucked.
over here thankfully theres a lot more freedom to do what people want in regards to sex and violence, but the only problem is that it only takes one old granny sitting in her home to get a multi-million pound government 'inquiry' into sex and violence on TV.

but, god bless monty python and let us never hope that they will be censored.
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Old 03-08-2004, 12:05 PM   #26 (permalink)
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If you really care, stop watching mtv and vh1. Those channels are a big part of why pop culture sucks.
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Old 03-08-2004, 12:46 PM   #27 (permalink)
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There isn't any censorship going on.
Companies can do what they want as far as the products they carry. The FCC is charged with responsibility for licensing and fining broadcasters who violate their guidelines. There is a need for that in a pluralistic society. They are executing their responsibility. Because you are interested in X- or R-rated entertainment, does not mean that every single citizen should be exposed to what you consider to be acceptable on the public airwaves or in every venue.
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Old 03-08-2004, 01:56 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by redlemon
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something wrong with the loudspeaker...

okay.

MTV doesn't make videos at all. They make promos, shows, interstitials, cartoons, wraparounds, doughnuts, clothing and accessories, but they do not make videos.

All videos come from the record companies. they arrange with MTV for airplay. if they hit a particular amount of sales, they can be moved into heavy rotation. Sometimes, the record companies give different versions of videos because of the MTV Standards group. (yes, they do have a standard) Sometimes videos will need to be modified because of drug references, sexual content, prominent logos. They are requested to come in ready to air, so if the music company doesn't make the modifications it can cause loss of record sales, so the company reedits and sends the new version.

Now this also doesn't just go for standards, also keep in mind that MTV spends lots of time and money on research. They provide that research to the music companies and they act accordingly.

I forgot to mention that MTV Networks also tries to accommodate the questionable material by airing it during appropriate times. They did that with Beavis and Butthead, Jackass, and Undressed.
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Old 03-08-2004, 02:11 PM   #29 (permalink)
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it's ridiculous to curse walmart for censoring, then follow that statement by how you just go to another store to buy the media.

of course, wal-mart knows that you have that option... but they are either hedging their bets that enough people will prefer the edited version or it is just simply against their standards to stock such items. as long as there is an alternative, any criticism of walmart is mute. you have no right to consume a certain level of sex, drugs etc. if no one exercises their right to produce that racy material, you have no one to blame.

it seems that a lot of people think that just because they deem something acceptable that it is infringing on their rights if other have more discerning standards. no one is forcing you to accept anything, you shouldn't force that on anyone else.

a lot of PC bashing goes on, but few realize that they are part of that same machine.
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Old 03-08-2004, 02:59 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by ARTelevision
There isn't any censorship going on.
Companies can do what they want as far as the products they carry. The FCC is charged with responsibility for licensing and fining broadcasters who violate their guidelines. There is a need for that in a pluralistic society. They are executing their responsibility. Because you are interested in X- or R-rated entertainment, does not mean that every single citizen should be exposed to what you consider to be acceptable on the public airwaves or in every venue.
This is true, but I also don't believe that it is their right to change the artists original music to suit what they deem appropriate as to not "offend" the public. As far as exposure goes, there is nobody forcing people who are sensitive to this material to watch it.
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Old 03-08-2004, 03:14 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Originally posted by WarWagon
This is true, but I also don't believe that it is their right to change the artists original music to suit what they deem appropriate as to not "offend" the public. As far as exposure goes, there is nobody forcing people who are sensitive to this material to watch it.
No one is forcing the artists directly. Its a 'if you want to sell it at wal-mart, you will change some of it' type of issue.
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Old 03-08-2004, 03:29 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Cynthetiq, just curious, but how does mtv reconcile different standards applied to different artists?
ie unedited "toxic" v. edited maroon 5.
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Old 03-08-2004, 04:00 PM   #33 (permalink)
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ustwo i think the editting was meant for mtv crowd and not the walmart crowd, as in, mtv blanks out the word, "Coming" not even in XXX fashion.

still, i think its' just aggravating..or else, britney spears is exempt..I believe someone said that everyone was upset it was janet's breast..if it was britney spears' breast, you'd never hear anyone complain.

I guess i am just against changing something for "moral" values...probably my secular side showing more than it should.

I will say, let the market decide on this issue.
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Old 03-08-2004, 05:47 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Selling once's music or cinematic work to a recording company or studio is selling the rights to how it is marketed, unless one negotiates different contractual terms. That's a way open to artists interesting in retaining some control over what happens to their work upon publication.
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Old 03-08-2004, 06:28 PM   #35 (permalink)
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I'm interested in seeing how digital media (eg digital cable) is going to change this. Eventually I forsee people being able to call up any program they want, and watching exactly what they would like to. For example, I want to see the West Wing. All of it. Eventually I see that being a possibility.

What does this mean for people like MTV? They'll have to be more honest about what's available. Parents would be able to decide whether or not the censored versions would be permitted for their children, and adults would be able to watch whatever the hell they want.

Market decision indeed.
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Old 03-14-2004, 01:07 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Okay. I think maybe the point is being missed.

Regardless of who is doing the actual censoring (MTV, etc. vs. the artist, etc.) the fact is it was censored. By editing the audio, it's a different product than the artist originally produced (unless he can bleep out himself) and by editing the images they're changing the vision of the guy who filmed it. I cannot believe that MTV, etc. isn't putting enormous pressure on labels, artists, and so forth to edit their product because of their over reaction to public to public outcry.

All that being said, what I found odd was that they were censoring audio that is only offensive if your willing to distort common sense and the english language. As for the video, (it was a man and woman both topless rolling around on top of a bed) wasn't any worse than some commercials and series I've seen running on the networks during "family time."

Is this video more offensive than primetime fare? It's not. It's just MTV over reacting to a public "outrage." (Which is a whole other subject.)
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Old 03-14-2004, 12:44 PM   #37 (permalink)
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guthmund, thank you, that is exactly the reason for my outburst.

that is it perfectly and 10,000 times better than i could have ever stated.

Thank you
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Old 03-16-2004, 05:13 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Hmm..I just happened to watch that video for the first time yesterday. Then I found this thread today. My first reaction was "heyyyy! pretty cool thing with the flowers" I thought that they censored it because of REAL nudity, that the girl's tities was popping out all over the place. Then the flower censoring would make more sense, and I would have prefer it over those damn blurs. I have no idea the video was butchered it like that, how sad...
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Old 03-16-2004, 06:54 PM   #39 (permalink)
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yeah...that's the other thing....

in the original, you only *think* you are goig to see actual softcore nudity, in the edited version, you think they are just naked and going at it...

also, in the edited version, you never see the real "artsy" side to the vid, just the computer graphics and then switch to the outside singing...

very aggravating
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Old 03-17-2004, 02:45 AM   #40 (permalink)
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i have to say, after watching MTV over here just now, theres practically no censoring (apart from the major swear words, and obvious stuff that just doesn't go before 9), you can watch all kinds of things without the bane of censoring.
guess MTV america and MTV uk are operating differently, shows you how 'outrage' can changes things...
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