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Wednesday, 13 March, 2002, 03:32 GMT
TV standards 'falling'
Children are being increasingly shielded from certain programmes by their parents
Parents were concerned about television content
Nearly half of television viewers believe the quality of programmes is falling, according to a report.

Audience dissatisfaction is up 18% in 2001, the study by the Independent Television Commission says.

Programme repeats and offensive material were among chief gripes.

For the first time, half of the audience surveyed had access to satellite, cable or ITV digital.
Multichannel households
Satellite
2001 27%
2000 21%
Cable
2001 19%
2000 14%
ITV Digital
2001 5%
2000 2%

The report shows 46% of people said standards in 2001 had got worse - up 18% on 2000.

Authors of the report blame the rise on the timing of the survey, which was conducted shortly after Channel 4 screened a controversial edition of Brass Eye.

The programme brought in record numbers of complaints and prompted a dressing-down from the ITC.

The number of programme repeats was a major concern - more than half of those unhappy with standards named this as an issue.
BBC satellite
Satellite access has increased

Violence, bad language and sex were also factors which troubled a fifth of those who complained of worsening standards.

The number of people who were "offended" by what they had seen during the year reached 42%, up from 29% on 2000 and the highest since 1992.

More parents stopped their children from watching certain programmes last year - 59% up by 10% on last year.

And nearly a quarter (23%) of parents said they were using blocking mechanisms to stop their children from having access to certain channels, up from 14% in 2000.

The same proportion of viewers believed advertisements could be a bad influence on their children's behaviour.

See also:

12 Mar 02 | TV and Radio
Multichannel halfway mark reached
24 Feb 02 | Health
Television: Good for health?
06 Dec 01 | Health
Filter 'could prevent seizures'
13 Aug 01 | Health
TV 'encourages healthy lifestyle'
03 Nov 01 | TV and Radio
Television storms satellite frontiers
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