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IRIS 2014-9:1/15


KJM presents broadcasting and telemedia cases from first half of 2014

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Cristina Bachmeier

Institute of European Media Law (EMR), Saarbrücken/Brussels

On 18 August 2014, the Kommission für Jugendmedienschutz (Committee for Youth Protection in the Media – KJM) published a press release, in which it presented the cases it had examined during the first half of 2014 following alleged breaches of the Staatsvertrag über den Schutz der Menschenwürde und den Jugendschutz in Rundfunk und Telemedien (Inter-State Agreement on the Protection of Human Dignity and Minors in Broadcasting and Telemedia – JMStV).

In order to monitor the broadcasting sector, the KJM relies on the staff of the Land media authorities, which evaluate possible breaches of the JMStV in broadcast programmes and notifies them to the KJM.

Among 20 cases examined, the KJM particularly highlighted the following threats to the development of minors:

- For under-18s (11pm watershed): scenes contained in series or programmes depicting socially or ethically disorientating attitudes to death and dying, as well as xenophobic, pro-National Socialist, anti-democratic, and aggressive radio content;

- For under-16s (10pm watershed): scenes with explicit sexual or violent content likely to harm the emotional development of minors;

- For under-12s (8pm watershed): programmes containing frightening scenes, threats or sexual connotations.

The KJM also complained about one advertisement that had infringed youth protection rules, two programme announcements that had breached Article 10(1) JMStV by ignoring watersheds and two breaches of Article 10(2) JMStV for failure to announce and adequately label age classifications. The KJM also asked for a ban on an interactive online TV programme that had depicted inhuman violence against other people.

In terms of Internet content, the KJM is supported in its tasks by jugendschutz.net as well as by the Land media authorities. When an infringement is found, the provider is firstly asked to remove the illegal content voluntarily. Cases are only submitted to the KJM for a decision if the content is not removed, or in particularly difficult circumstances.

In the nine telemedia cases that it examined in relation to the protection of minors, the following infringements were found and punished: Two services were deemed absolutely inadmissible on the basis of content likely to incite hatred or violent content, six were classified as relatively inadmissible due to pornographic content, and one was considered harmful to the development of minors because it depicted explicit sexual acts.

In 98 cases, the KJM requested that the telemedia service concerned be placed on the prohibited list, usually because of pornographic content, but in some cases due to extreme right wing or violent content.

In 126 cases, the KJM responded to applications from other bodies to place a wide range of different services on the prohibited list.

Depending on the type and seriousness of the infringements, the KJM filed official complaints, prohibited the services concerned and/or imposed fines.

Pressemitteilung 07/2014 der KJM, 18. August 2014 DE
  Committee for Youth Protection in the Media, press release 07/2014 of 18 August 2014