Rating System Needed for Cartoon Industry
    2013-06-04 20:38:18     CRIENGLISH.com         Web Editor: Wang Wei

2 children in rural areas of Jiangsu Province were severely burned by their friends when trying to duplicate a scene in a famous Chinese cartoon "Pleasant goat and big big wolf". [Photo: The Beijing News]

Cartoons are often regarded as children's entertainment. But adult elements such as violent and erotic scenes featured in cartoon programs can also pose negative effects on children.

Industry insiders as well as many parents believe a rating system for cartoons may help parents select appropriate cartoons for children whilst also developing a healthier market. Li Dong has the details.

  

In April this year, two children in rural areas of Jiangsu Province were severely burned by their friends when trying to duplicate a scene in a famous Chinese cartoon "Pleasant goat and big big wolf". The medical costs for treating the two kids are as much as 1.5 million yuan.

The parents have decided to sue the cartoon production company.

Actually, violent scenes are just one of the several negative effects unrated cartoons have on children. Other inappropriate plots include, misusing fire and cutting tools, verbal abuse, dangerous acts and adult behavior.

Some lawyers believe that the production company should be partially responsible for the tragedy mentioned above if they did not insert cautions at such scenes. Liu Ming, a psychologist, says that parents should watch cartoons together with their children to limit the impact of negative aspects of the programs.

"Parents should teach their children what is important and what is dangerous, such as how to treat a life and how to better understand life."

According to media reports, currently most of the cartoons in the Chinese market are for adults and these contain a lot of violent and adult scenes. However, Miss Gu from a cartoon company in Tianjin says, the cost of making a cartoon is so much that they need to cut the cost whilst making it appeal to the audience as much as possible to maintain the operational viability of their company.

"The budget the TV station gives us is not very high, so breaking even from funding solely from the TV station is very difficult."

Miss Gu further adds that introducing a rating system could be a proper way to boost the domestic cartoon market, as cartoon companies can make tailored products for children of specific age ranges rather than inserting adult elements into their programs to attract a mass audience.

"Kids should watch cartoons which are suitable for their age. In the market, parents also hope their kids can watch cartoons which can give them proper guidance and education."

According to a survey by CCTV, China Central Television, 75 percent of surveyed people say cartoons should be rated, 24 percent of respondents say too much restriction on entertainment products is unnecessary and they believe kids have their own discretions, and the remaining 1 percent say that this is not a simple topic.

For CRI, I am Li Dong.

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