• Indecent “NickMom” Devastates Nick Jr. Network

    by  • October 10, 2013 • Broadcast Decency, Ratings Reform, Sex • 16 Comments

    Last October, Nick Jr. – a pay-TV network which billed itself as a “safe, educational place” for kids ages 2-6 – introduced its NickMom programming block, featuring references to genitalia, sex, drinking, and other inappropriate content. A year later, Nick Jr. is reaping what it sowed: plummeting viewership — and revenue.

     On October 1st 2012, Nick Jr. launched “NickMom,” a two-hour block of programming which the network claimed would be a “new destination for all things funny, just for moms.” But most moms didn’t find the network’s content funny. Many who had relied on Nick Jr. as safe viewing for their children suddenly found their preschoolers and toddlers deluged with explicit profanity, references to sex, genitalia, and breasts, and snide, cynical attacks on children and families. The NickMom program Parental Discretion with Stefanie Wilder-Taylor, for example, featured lines like, “Remember how gross you feel [after giving birth]? Your milk comes in and your breasts are gigantic and there’s always someone pawing at them. And then you have to feed the baby,” along with skits about “Devil Baby” and “The Boob Boss.”

    Parents were outraged by the network’s NickMom move. The PTC’s Facebook page was deluged with comments from parents horrified by the programming block’s sleazy content – and by the fact that many were paying a premium fee for Nick Jr. specifically so that their children would have something safe to watch, only for Nick to pull a monumental “bait-and-switch” on them.  “I just want to thank NickMom for showing my 2½ year-old son a woman stripping with her shirt off. I had changed the channel to what I THOUGHT was safe programming for him. I didn’t wait for the channel to come up…only to walk back into the room moments later to the horror that was on TV,” one typical comment read. 

    And now a year later, Nick Jr. has paid the price for its decision to put sleazy sex jokes and foul language ahead of the interests of mothers and children. A recent report from media financial analysis firm SNL-Kagan showed that Nick Jr. has suffered a massive loss of both profits and viewers. The network is operating with a cash flow of negative 27% — meaning Nick Jr.’s corporate owner Viacom (which also owns MTV, VH1, Comedy Central, and several other cable networks) is taking a loss on the entire Nick Jr. network. SNL-Kagan added that Nick Jr.’s performance is “the worst among the rated cable networks,” and that “much of the ratings slide is attributed to the controversy around NickMom, the racy adult programming block that led to angry parents boycotting the network and complaining to advertisers.” Kagan also reports that Nick Jr.’s prime-time rating this August was 29; back in 2011, before the NickMom debacle, the network enjoyed a prime-time rating of 73.

    That Nick Jr. lost money and viewers as a result of its decision to push filth on its paying customers comes as no surprise. Some parents were so fed up with the introduction of NickMom that they threatened a year ago to boycott Nick Jr., and switch to watching the Disney Junior network instead: “Thank goodness for Disney. Guess what, Nick? Now we will start watching Disney Junior. Which means we will be buying lots of Disney toys, and Disney movies, and Disney clothes. So long, Nick Jr.” said one parent to the PTC.

    And that’s exactly what happened. In March, The New York Times reported that Disney Junior was crushing its rival Nick Jr., stating that “Nick Jr. ratings have plummeted more than 50 percent, according to Nielsen…[Disney] beat its rival, even though Nick Jr. is available in 75 million homes, 25 percent more than Disney Junior.” As a result of its humiliating defeat, Viacom is doing its utmost to downplay the disaster, with one spokesman dismissively shrugging that Nick Jr. is “an ancillary service.” 

    In the entertainment industry, saving face means never admitting that pushing graphic content at families and kids is a bad idea. But make no mistake – the folks at Nick Jr. now know it all too well. 

    We at the PTC congratulate our members for standing up against NickMom’s anti-family content, and for sending the network a clear message by hitting them where it really hurts – the pocketbook.

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    About

    Christopher Gildemeister is the PTC’s Head of Research Operations. He began as an Entertainment Analyst at the PTC in 2005. From 2007-2016, he was Senior Writer/Editor, responsible for communicating the PTC’s message to the public through newsletters, columns, and the PTC Watchdog blog. Dr. Gildemeister holds a Ph.D. from The Catholic University of America.

    16 Responses to Indecent “NickMom” Devastates Nick Jr. Network

    1. Dana
      October 11, 2013 at 8:14 am

      Well I guess that disproves the “Sex sells” theory, doesn’t it?

    2. Sandra
      October 12, 2013 at 2:45 am

      The only CHILDHOOD children will have with type programming will be birth to six months. Our children deserve MORE!

    3. James Healey
      October 24, 2013 at 4:51 pm

      This is disgusting! STOP pushing sleaze on small CHILDREN!! Nick has gone to the Devil!!!

    4. Jennifer Fung
      November 18, 2013 at 9:15 pm

      NickMom isn’t a cup of my tea for my future motherhood. It has to go!

    5. Miranda
      November 21, 2013 at 8:23 pm

      So why is it still on?? Are they ever going to cancel it? They have terrible ratings because of nick mom. I don’t understand what they are gaining by keeping it.

      • Amy
        April 16, 2014 at 6:56 pm

        Not only that, but they have ADDED programming, so now the programming is for FOUR hours. Why is it that ONE atheist that is “offended” by the Bible or a cross can shut down a tradition in a town or a school, but thousands of moms protesting against indecent programming on a CHILDREN’S NETWORK get dirt thrown in their faces? Yet another attack on families and children. Also, the number of commercials is nothing to sniff at-there are WAY too many of them.

      • Abby
        April 3, 2017 at 7:56 am

        I think they did cancel it….But i’m not sure. If so, then mothers rejoice!

    6. Arc
      November 16, 2014 at 5:17 pm

      I hate NickMom.It has replaced lots of shows and is horrible.NickMom needs to be taken OFF.

    7. November 17, 2014 at 7:00 pm

      NickMom should have never even been put on.It is the most horrible thing that has happened.It’s the baddest show that has ever been made.It and PAW Patrol need to be canceled entirely.

    8. Leslie
      April 10, 2015 at 10:18 pm

      I am so angry. I confined in nick jr. For safe educational shows. But I walk out of the living room and hear from the kitchen adult voices and inappropriate talk women and men in bed naked. I’m appalled my daughter is not only not allowed to watch tv anymore but I can’t trust a simple kids channel.
      This is bad. Very bad. I’m dissapointed.

    9. Jamie
      June 1, 2015 at 11:14 pm

      I can’t believe Nick Mom is still on the air. Tonight, my daughter was watching Bubble Guppies on Nick Jr. My wife and I were discussing something, not realizing it had ended and That 70′s Show suddenly came on. All of the sudden, we hear, “That would make her a hooker…” “No, hookers do it for money.” Immediately, my wife grabbed the remote and changed the channel. We were just discussing two nights ago how angry she was that they were playing New Adventures of Old Christine, afterwards, with people half naked in bed. I couldn’t believe they were now playing That 70′s Show, which is filled with drug references and inappropriate adult humor.

      I was livid and beside myself that they are doing this. How stupid can they be?!?! I will promptly be sending Nickelodeon a scathing email. Morons…

    10. Colimbiagirl
      November 19, 2015 at 2:42 am

      I don’t want Nick Jr to be taken off the air because it has been very beneficial to my son. I son was diagnosed with autism. Since watching Nickjr, he has learned and gained a lot of valuable knowledge. Yes Nickjr made a mistake by put sex images and bad jokes on the air but it was at night around 10:00 pm when kids should be in the bed. I believe they were tryi mg to give the moms some too but it just back fired because of the programming the decided to air. Bad decision making. Shows like instant mom I think was a good decision but I think they should have went with reruns like the convey show, family matters and shows like that would have been beneficial and family oriented while displaying a health image of mothers in action and not display the graphic side of motherhood. Therefore I think Nickjr. One bad decision does not make the network awful. There are humans behind the scene and no one is perfect. You live and you learn. Know if they don’t learn from this then there is a problem.

      • Abby
        April 3, 2017 at 8:05 am

        I feel your pain! I was diagnosed with autism when I was little, and I used to watch nick jr/noggin all the time! But I think if the exceutives thought that nickmom was a bad decision, they would have canceled it as soon as the complaints came in, or maybe scrap the idea. Nope, they continued for i don’t know how long (I graduated to nick when nickmom was at its height.). But I agree that this was a mistake, and they just wanted to appeal to the moms who had to deal with kids!

        I sincerly hope that nick jr dosen’t get canceled. It would break my heart.

    11. Valerie
      April 3, 2017 at 10:12 pm

      I agree it shouldn’t have been on a young children’s network, but quite frankly I miss it! I would love if they made a Nick Mom channel. Some of their shows weren’t so bad–Like ‘Take me to your mother.’ That show was just about a mom exploring other moms’ career choices.

    12. Norihoarder
      July 4, 2017 at 8:22 pm

      “Which means we will be buying lots of Disney toys, and Disney movies, and Disney clothes.” – Me in a nutshell

    13. Sophie
      August 12, 2017 at 12:29 am

      Thank god nickmom is cancelled. It’s the worst idea nick jr has.

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