School's out for the summer, and on goes the TV.
Parents and experts concerned children are being regularly exposed to
sexually suggestive advertisements have called for a ratings system and specific
timeslots the ads can be shown.
Such scenes include young ladies modeling how underwear can make them look
sexier, like special bras that enhance body shape under a summer dress.
Another suggestive ad shows how a speckled skin girl, dumped by her lover,
becomes popular again after using cosmetics that turn her complexion fairer.
A survey by the Chinese Youth and Children's Research Center earlier this
year found that urban children watch TV about an hour a day on average.
The survey covered more than 2,500 children in six major cities including
Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu.
Similar surveys made in 1996 and 1992 found that children watch TV for 38
minutes and 25 minutes a day on average respectively.
'Sex sells' is a longstanding mantra of the advertising industry. Pretty
girls and suggestive situations are being written into ads even when they have
little connection to the product being sold.
Experts said young impressionable viewers are being unnecessarily exposed to
blatant overselling of sex in ads.
"These kind of adverts reflect the social discrimination on women, which
objectifies them. The ads only want to promote whether she has a plump or sexy
"Children and teenagers are passive receivers when they watch the ads on TV.
As they have a relatively immature mentality and in the process of building
their own sexual awareness toward the opposite sex, they need helpful guides,
not misleading ads."
A counselor with Beijing Youth Counseling Center
"We are drafting a suggestion for forming a rating and auditing system for
adverts to put an end to misleading ads. The broadcast time of adverts should be
decided in accordance with their content, especially during summer and winter
A Beijing People's Congress delegate
"I was shocked to hear my teenage daughter saying that she does not want to
eat cakes for fear of losing a good figure to attract her male classmates. TV
programs are flooded with sexy ads and some bad ads were broadcast several times
a day. Those ads make me sick and I always change the channel when those ugly
ads appear. But who can change the channel for my daughter while I am not home
during the summer vacation?"
A mother in Chongqing
(China Daily 07/23/2007 page2)