With cartoons leading the way, children’s television programs may be more violent than prime-time programming, according to a study by the Washington-based Parents Television Council.
The report, released in March, found an average of 7.86 violent instances per hour in the 443 hours of children’s programming analyzed. That compares with 4.71 instances of violence per hour in prime-time programming found by a 2002 study by the council. The children’s programming also included 858 incidents of verbal aggression; 662 incidents of disruptive, disrespectful behavior; and 275 instances of sexual content.
L. Brent Bozell, president of the Parents Television Council, said, “There is more violence aimed at young children than at adults on television today. Studies have shown exposure to television violence to be positively associated to aggressive behavior in some children, and exposure to sexual content increases the likelihood that children will become sexually active earlier in life.”
The study focused on before- and after-school and Saturday– morning programming for children ages 5 to 10, looking at eight networks: ABC Family, Cartoon Network, Disney Channel, Nickelodeon, ABC, Fox, NBC, and WB. (RNS)