Film and Publication Board opposes porn

2011-12-09 07:19
Thinus Ferreira
Cape Town – South Africa's Film and Publication Board (FBP) will "strongly oppose" TopTV's plans to launch a separate porn package in 2012, saying that it has noted civil society's objections and that TopTV's porn plan is not in the interest of children.

TopTV shocked South Africa's TV industry when the South African pay TV operator did a 180 degree turn and announced plans for R18-rated hardcore channels which it wants to make available to subscribers on a separate subscription.

The three 24-hour Playboy channels will come at a monthly price of R199 and TopTV has already signed a carriage agreement with Playboy TV for three so-called adult channels which will require a specific separate PIN to be accessible.

TopTV has applied to the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa), submitting an "application for authorisation of channels".

Icasa told Channel24 that the application is under review and that "the authority has not taken a decision yet".

TopTV, which previously promised more general TV channels and a sports channel, has not managed to add any commercial TV channels to its general bouquet this year.

Strict regulations

"We did note the proposed pornographic channels by TopTV. We are going to strongly oppose the channels and the pornography plans and we will be engaging Icasa about it," says Mlimandlela Mdamase, the Film and Publication Board spokesperson.

"We do respect the law which allows people to have access to pornography should they so wish. The law allows for people seeking pornography to get it via shops and specific outlets where strict regulations apply, but on television the Film and Publication Board's view is that it is most inappropriate and not in the general interest of children or society," he said.

"In the interest of children we believe it not wise to offer this kind of content on television. If people want it, there are places where they can go to to access it.

"TopTV has indicated that it's decided to go ahead with the submission. The Film and Publication Board will strongly oppose it and we have noted the strong reaction from South Africa's civil society. We will definitely engage with Icasa on the matter, similar to when MultiChoice had similar plans previously to broadcast 24-hour pornographic channels in the country," he said.

Just before launch, TopTV CEO Vino Govender said: "We are running our business with strong Christian ethical codes and we are not planning to introduce a porn channel. Besides, we don't want to poison the minds of South African children out there."

In a statement earlier this week TopTV said "Stagnating to past statement will not serve the changed needs from our clients or assist our growth."

"We have looked into this from all possible angles and as people with families we are very mindful of our subscribers. We are approaching this in a very responsible way and will ensure that our current and future subscribers' values are in no way compromised."

TopTV says it is "aware that adult content is a very sensitive subject and as a result we have structured the channels as an additional stand-alone package such that those who do not subscribe to the channels will in no way be exposed to the content."

Comments

  • Squeegee - 2011-12-09 07:55

    Close down TopTV - It is not viable and wants to exploit sexuality to survive. Their turnaround on the issue of Porn shows that it is just all about the money.

      wesley.bischoff - 2011-12-09 09:28

      That comment is so pathetic... thanks for the laugh.

      Randomhero6661 - 2011-12-09 09:51

      ah squeegee... cant afford it now can we? haha

  • Joe - 2011-12-09 08:14

    are these fbp people living in a bubble? why can't they doing something about the free unrestricted .com porn that have infiltrated our homes and schools?

  • Retha - 2011-12-09 08:39

    Um, ever watched a late night movie on etv? even if not a porn movie, EVERY SINGLE ad is for cellphone porn!!!! I'd rather have the smut on a separate channel where it can be accessed by only those who actualy want to watch it.!!

      wesley.bischoff - 2011-12-09 09:29

      Yes, those ads are so damn irritating!!! I'm all for porn but that stuff sux!

  • Donald - 2011-12-09 09:06

    Porn on TV in SA is nothing new. The satellite that transmits it over southern Africa is transmitting it regardless of Top TV. A few years ago I had PSAT (porn tv) installed in my home in Gauteng and I took out a 2 year subscription. This is seriously a storm in a tea cup.

  • wesley.bischoff - 2011-12-09 09:27

    OMF!! These people really need to get off their high horses. What people do in the privacy of their own home is none of your business!!!! (within the parameters of the law that is...) You have no right telling people what they can and cannot do in their private time.

  • Nosiphom - 2011-12-09 14:00

    Remember FPB we are citezens of this country who wnat and deserve free choice of what we want to watch and where. We do not need nannies to make sure we do not hurt ourselves. Besides overcontrolling results in incapacity, and the day we are in a free world where these things are available we may not be capable of knowing how to deal with them, because they have been hidden from us. Look at the eastern block countries for example, when they first experienced democracy they could not handle it because they were used to things being chosen for them. What music to listen to, books to read, films to watch was all determined for them. All you need to ensure is that there are adequate controls in place.

  • sally.lewitt - 2011-12-11 21:01

    If we claim to be a democracy then "freedom" of "choice" is a fundamental key factor. Whether "porn" is right or wrong it is up to the individual/s to have that choice. Seems its all right to broad cast murder, rape, wars and crime and exposing our "children" to horrendous violence! Just a saying..

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