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Video Games Classification Essay On Movies

In a world where movies can be viewed at the tap of a finger, film regulators are broadening their scope. The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) is a non-governmental organisation, primarily responsible for the national classification and censorship of films exhibited at cinemas. Today, it published its Annual Report, which includes detail on public feedback about film age ratings and the job of applying age ratings to films and TV series on VOD platforms.

Online exhibition platforms have become ubiquitous, and parents are keen to ensure that their content is classified. BBFC Chief Executive David Austin explains: “In 2015 we saw our range of services continue to diversify, reflecting public expectation for the same trusted guidance available for film and DVD/Blu-ray, to be similarly available online.” BBFC statistics reflect an increased demand for age ratings on VOD content and greater protection using mobile phones. According to the report, last year 85 per cent of parents said it was important to have consistent classifications both online and offline, while three quarters of parents want to link parental controls to classifications, and for more platforms to carry age ratings and content advice.

The BBFC has responded to these demands by working closely with the digital home entertainment industry to bring more age ratings to VOD platforms. Take the Ellie Goulding song ‘Love Me Like You Do’ from the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack. The video, which contains several excerpts from the erotic film, was rated 15 for “strong sex references”. Meanwhile, the BBFC has entered into a new partnership with mobile network operator EE, developing a ‘Strict’ setting based on their own PG rating. This gives parents peace of mind that the mobile device they give their child is safe and that protections are in place to help prevent them seeing unsuitable content.

But regulating the internet is tricky. In the real world, a movie theatre attendant can easily spot if a school kid is trying to get into an 18 certificate film. Online locks may work with younger children who are willing to heed their parents’ warnings, but curious, internet-savvy children will find ways to get around them, be it through incognito browser windows or other user profiles. In this instance, film classification becomes less relevant and more symbolic.

Clearly parents can no longer rely merely on locks and classifications to protect their kids. It is up to them to decide whether to open up a mature dialogue about the adult issues and themes that contribute to a film receiving a higher rating. Young people are a lot smarter than they’re often give them credit for, and it is only through thoughtful engagement with issues of sex, violence, misogyny and racism that the next generation will grow up to become considerate, respectful and tolerant adults.

Published 1 Jul 2016

Tags: BBFCFilm ClassificationNetflix

Our education resources offer you inside information on film classification in the UK written by the people in the know…the BBFC.

We're hoping that it will become an essential resource for teachers and students across the UK who are covering the topics of UK Film & DVD ratings, the history of Video Game regulation, the British media and media regulation and censorship. We hope it also provides useful background for those studying media more broadly.

The site still includes many features which are well established for those who know our education work:

  • our Case Studies on films (including may set film texts for Film Studies courses in the UK)
  • our Student guide detailing famous decisions, key films and socio-historical commentary on the Board and its history
  • our Timelines highlighting key events related to issues like drugs, sexual violence and legislation
  • our detailed histories of the Board and UK law and regulation
  • and our in depth site articles written by BBFC staff which can now be found in Education News

Elsewhere on the site you can search through our press releases, research and decisions including reading BBFCinsight and information about cuts and film rating in our full database of titles.

We have new features too. These include Rate a trailer which is your chance to analyse trailers and compare your thoughts and rating recomendations with those of BBFC Compliance Officers.

We have a long established education programme, visiting schools, colleges and universities across the UK, and also working with other groups and partners including film festivals, youth groups, cinemas and adult education providers. Our education visits are free, although we accept contributions towards travel and accommodation whenever this is possible as it helps us to continue to offer the service.

Teachers can use the site to request a speaker from the BBFC comes to your school, to book places at BBFC term time seminars, to contact the BBFC, to organise interviews with BBFC staff for students doing presentations or dissertations and to request our resources including a free classroom poster.

We offer inhouse seminars bi-weekly in term time - you can book tickets here or on Eventbrite using the password bbfc. For those who can't travel to us we can provide videoconferencing or Skype workshops in which our examiners will answer your students' questions and discuss films, censorship, classification today, important and controversial decisions and key issues with your class.  For more information on booking a session click here.

Content for younger children, including the chance to rate trailers for children's films and learn more about our work can be found in our website for children here.

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