Mi­nors tune in to sex shows

Townsville Bulletin - - NATION - CHRIS HAR­RIS JACK HOUGHTON

CY­BER ex­perts have warned chil­dren are get­ting unchecked ac­cess to ma­ture movies filled with gra­tu­itous vi­o­lence and sex scenes on tele­vi­sion net­works’ dig­i­tal li­braries.

Pro­grams usu­ally hid­den from chil­dren through latenight pro­gram­ming are now avail­able at the click of a but­ton through apps on smart TVs and tablets.

Any child with an email ad­dress can ac­cess ma­ture- age con­tent on SBS On De­mand and ABC iView in­clud­ing one movie – Lila Says – which por­trays a 16- year- old girl who is ad­dicted to sex.

The French movie, rated MA15+, is ad­ver­tised via the SBS On De­mand web­site along­side The Texas Chain­saw Mas­sacre and a hor­ror film fea­tur­ing scant­ily clad women ti­tled Strip­pers vs Were­wolves.

ABC iView fea­tures The In­be­tween­ers, rated M, and a doc­u­men­tary ti­tled The Best Songs to Have Sex To.

SBS has been buy­ing the rights to hours of con­tent from around the world to stock in their on­line li­brary ac­ces­si­ble for free.

Films are sep­a­rated into cat­e­gories such as ‘ Get a Room’ and ‘ French Fris­son’, nearly all of which fea­ture sex­ual themes and sex scenes.

Both sta­tions de­clined to com­ment on mea­sures taken to block chil­dren.

Aus­tralia’s top cy­ber safety ex­pert, Sharon McLean, said catch- up tele­vi­sion meant re­stricted clas­si­fi­ca­tions could be viewed by kids at any time of the day.

“On free to air TV, the adult con­tent has to come on af­ter 9.30pm at night, but the other plat­forms don’t be­cause they can put what they watch when­ever they want on­line,” she said.

“She said catch up tele­vi­sion posed a prob­lem for par­ents be­cause chil­dren of­ten bragged to their peers about in­ap­pro­pri­ate con­tent they had watched.

“One kid watches it and tells some­one else, who tells two more and sud­denly it is a con­ta­gion – things move at a very fast speed.

“In the old days if you missed a TV show on Chan­nel 9, well too bad you missed it, but now they can catch it. It is still go­ing to be avail­able.

“Ex­pos­ing your brain to stuff that you’re not de­vel­oped enough to un­der­stand is detri­men­tal to young minds, and it man­i­fests in poor so­cial skills and other prob­lems.

“There has al­ways been in­ap­pro­pri­ate con­tent on TV, but with the in­ter­net and all the stream­ing ser­vices, any­one can watch it the next day.”

Fox­tel, partly owned by News Corp Aus­tralia, has a Parental Con­trol func­tion which lets users re­strict pro­grams by clas­si­fi­ca­tion and put PIN locks on pur­chases.

EX­POS­ING YOUR BRAIN TO STUFF THAT YOU’RE NOT DE­VEL­OPED ENOUGH TO UN­DER­STAND, IS DETRI­MEN­TAL TO YOUNG MINDS CY­BER SAFETY EX­PERT SHARON MCLEAN

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