If in Doubt, Cut

Geist - - Findings -

A list of in­struc­tions to pro­gram per­son­nel and film ed­i­tors to guide the se­lec­tion and edit­ing of CBC chil­dren’s pro­grams with re­spect to the CBC’S pol­icy on vi­o­lence in chil­dren’s pro­grams.

1) Avoid ex­ces­sive ag­gres­sion, in­clud­ing all tor­ture and sadis­tic beat­ings.

2) Avoid an­i­mals be­ing hit, or cru­elty to an­i­mals in any form.

3) Chil­dren iden­tify them­selves with other chil­dren. Accordingly, avoid all cru­elty shown by adults to chil­dren, or chil­dren to other chil­dren.

4) Ver­bal­ized ex­cla­ma­tions of panic or pain should not be em­pha­sized.

5) Avoid lin­ger­ing close-ups of faces in pain.

6) Avoid lin­ger­ing on painful death scenes, espe­cially when shot in close-up. 7) Edit out se­quences in­tended to in­duce ir­rel­e­vant ten­sion con­se­quent upon un­ful­filled threats or other sit­u­a­tions which do not di­rectly ad­vance the story line. 8) Avoid scenes in which ten­sion is pro­longed with­out re­lief. Heavy mu­sic, dead si­lence, and tick­ing clocks en­hance ten­sion, as do scenes shot in shadow or half light. Watch for cu­mu­la­tive ten­sion-build­ing ef­fects, and avoid sud­den dra­matic noises af­ter a long pe­riod of si­lence.

9) Avoid scenes in which wild an­i­mals on the loose may come upon a child or pet an­i­mal.

10) Edit out se­quences of ugly or fright­en­ing faces emerg­ing from shadow to close-up light.

11) Avoid weapons that are eas­ily ob­tain­able by chil­dren. These in­clude clubs, ra­zors, knives, bot­tles, rocks. Avoid hang­ing scenes, trip wires, booby-traps— things which chil­dren can eas­ily im­i­tate. Guns and swords are ac­cept­able if the cam­era shot is long and there are not mul­ti­ple in­ter­cut close-ups.

12) Car­toon ma­te­rial is jus­ti­fied gen­er­ally by the need for com­edy and laughter. Em­pha­sis should be on com­edy ef­fected through the sud­den re­ver­sal of ex­pected ac­tion. Avoid com­edy that achieves its ef­fect through hu­man in­dig­nity. Avoid ag­gres­sion linked with sex­ual over­tones, or ag­gres­sion linked with phys­i­cal or racial stereo­types. Em­pha­sis in car­toons should be on beauty of an­i­ma­tion and move­ment and plea­sur­able sit­u­a­tions.

13) Se­ri­al­ized items must not end with tense or be­wil­der­ing scenes. Edit­ing of seg­ments should pro­vide for nat­u­ral re­duc­tion of ac­tion and mo­tion.

14) If in doubt, cut.

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