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Press Release

PTC: Netflix’s “Bird Box” Warning Means it Must Take Off its Own Blindfold

Release Date: 1/3/2019

LOS ANGELES (January 3, 2019) – The Parents Television Council says Netflix’s warning to viewers not to take the “Bird Box Challenge,” where people blindfold themselves doing different and sometimes dangerous activities, proves the company’s blatant double-standard regarding the potential harm that its programming can have on viewers.


Netflix posted the following tweet in response to reports of injuries stemming from the “Bird Box Challenge”: “Can’t believe I have to say this, but: PLEASE DO NOT HURT YOURSELVES WITH THIS BIRD BOX CHALLENGE. We don’t know how this started, and we appreciate the love, but Boy and Girl have just one wish for 2019 and it is that you not end up in the hospital due to memes.”


“Netflix can no longer pretend that its programming doesn’t impact the behavior of its viewers. While we applaud the company’s reluctant warning, it simultaneously serves as an admission that its program content does, in fact, create a potential harm to viewers,” said PTC President Tim Winter.


“Netflix’s corporate tweet opened with the words ‘Can’t believe I have to say this,’ but even their own research has proven that their content has an impact on viewers. And Netflix is fully aware of the scientific research that proves a connection between their program content and its impact on viewers.


“The film’s fictional characters may have ‘one wish for 2019’ that nobody ends up in the hospital. We certainly agree. But we add to it our wish for 2019: that Netflix ceases to market and distribute content proven to be harmful to children, like the suicide drama ‘13 Reasons Why’; that Netflix ceases to exhibit programming that grotesquely sexualizes children, as the cartoon ‘Big Mouth’ does; and that Netflix ceases to distribute content that borders on child pornography, as the film ‘Desire’ does.


“It is time for Netflix to show real concern for children and families. The company can do so by unequivocally and affirmatively removing its own self-made blindfold about the impact its program content can have on viewers -- especially children.”

The Parents Television Council® (www.parentstv.org) is a non-partisan education organization advocating responsible entertainment. It was founded in 1995 to ensure that children are not constantly assaulted by sex, violence and profanity on television and in other media.

This national grassroots organization has more than 1.4 million members, and works with television producers, broadcasters, networks and sponsors in an effort to stem the flow of harmful and negative messages targeted to children.

The PTC™ also works with elected and appointed government officials to enforce broadcast decency standards. Most importantly, the PTC produces critical research and publications documenting the dramatic increase in sex, violence and profanity in entertainment. This information is provided free of charge so parents can make informed viewing choices for their own families.

Visit the new PTC Watchdog Blog at www.parentstv.org/blog.

Follow the PTC on Twitter: @ThePTC.
 
Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ptcusa.

To speak with a representative from the Parents Television Council, please contact Kelly Oliver at (703) 307-9404 or email at kelly@kellyoliverpr.com.