Amending the Video Recordings Act 2010 (1984)

Hello there,

This is my idea and suggestion of amendments to current laws regarding censorship in the United Kingdom.  I have read many other ideas and comments on this same subject, but I feel my idea is much more different from others which have been suggested, and therefore I'd like to make my own seperate suggestion, since it's entirely different from other suggestions which has been made. 

The Video Recordings Act 1984 was largely brought into effect because of the media and public uproar of so called "video nasties".  The Government's then response was to introduce regulation to combat the overflow of material that was being labelled "video nasties".  The BBFC was made the designated state censor and classification of all media, DVD, videos sold in the UK.  I think by today's standards a lot has changed.  Public opinion has changed on what the majority of adults firmly believe in the United Kingdom that they should be allowed to watch, at '18' anything they want as long as it doesn't breach UK law (this is even been proven by the BBFC's own research which they do). Let's face it, how many people coming out of the cinema these days, or after watching a DVD, like let's say Hostel or Saw (which would probably be banned back in the 80's! That shows how much things have changed), or some of the more violent horror movies refer to them now as "video nasties"?  I have yet to hear one person mention or refer to horror movies as a "video nasty" because of its violent or gory content.  I'm 24, and I am a horror fanatic, come to that I love just watching movies.  I have been for a long time.  I love horror movies, and not once has any movie that I have watched made me feel the need to "cause harm to society" by what I have watched.  I think since 1984, the notion of violent films or videos causing harm to people seems kind of absurd these days.  To back it up, there is no real psychological evidence that viewing violent movies could be the cause of anyone getting involved in violence thereafter.  If there is, the brave people at the BBFC who examines DVDs for certificates are very much so corrupted under that test.  I've long believed that if someone is going to do something, whether it be a violent crime or whatever, they are going to do it no matter about whether they've watched this or that.  I don't know how many people may agree or disagree on that, but that's the way I see it. 

Many suggestions on here are asking for most of the VRA to be abolished.  This is not my suggestion at all.  I do not even agree with an "unrated 18" certificate being introduced.  They're forgetting the other laws in the UK, such as Obscene Publications Act, and other relevant legislation.

My idea/suggestion:

The BBFC in my opinion do an excellent role in protecting children and minors from movies that would be entirely unsuitable for them to be watching.  They're experienced, and have the backing of the public when it comes to protecting children from unsuitable material for them.  When it comes to adults however, the BBFC still lacks in some areas.  This has been proven as I have said above by their own research that adults want freedom.  They have told the BBFC in 2005 and again in 2009, that we don't want them telling us what to watch when it comes to movies that are 18 rated.  We don't want people telling us what to watch, unless it breaches the law.  This is where my suggestion solves all these problems, but yet, protects children from unsuitable violent material (also ensures companies are not selling illegal obscene DVDs on the market unwittingly).  My suggestion to the Government is to change the VRA so the BBFC's current '18' certificate does NOT conform to some guideline of "harm" or cutting due to the BBFC's guidelines, but only conforms to the current laws in the United Kingdom which cover obscene material or protection of children (1978 act).  The BBFC when it comes to giving a film or DVD an 18 rating therefore would not be testing it against their own made up set of guidelines, but only going by what would be against the UK law.  Their guidelines is not law.

 For example, let's say if the movie Grotesque (which the BBFC rejected last year because of their harm test [which under my idea would not exist, because there's no real evidence to back it up] and sexual violence policy [a policy of the BBFC's own]) was submitted for an '18' under my idea, it would pass uncut for adults only at 18 because there is no laws being breached under the UK law.  Movies and DVDs that breach current legislation such as protection of children act or obscene material would still be subject to being rejected or cuts, because they would be illegal, and not judged because the BBFC find them unsuitable for adults but because they breach actual law.  The test of harm in the VRA should be replaced by something that would bring effect to my idea.  It would have the backing of the majority of responsible adults in the country that want to see adult movies without BBFC censorship unless the material is illegal, and also to protect younger viewers by still making it illegal to supply age restricted movies.

That way, adults get to see what they want within the law without the BBFC's own guidelines telling adults what to watch at '18', and children are still being protected from age restricted material by keeping the rest of the VRA intact.

Thank you for reading my idea, and I hope it does be considered.  Because today's standards on movies have changed.  Adults are fed up with people telling us what we can't watch because the BBFC consider it to be "harmful".

Barry.

PS: If you back this idea, please comment on it.  It's important to note that unlike other ideas for changing the VRA, mine provides adults to see material within the law and protects children.

Why is this idea important?

Hello there,

This is my idea and suggestion of amendments to current laws regarding censorship in the United Kingdom.  I have read many other ideas and comments on this same subject, but I feel my idea is much more different from others which have been suggested, and therefore I'd like to make my own seperate suggestion, since it's entirely different from other suggestions which has been made. 

The Video Recordings Act 1984 was largely brought into effect because of the media and public uproar of so called "video nasties".  The Government's then response was to introduce regulation to combat the overflow of material that was being labelled "video nasties".  The BBFC was made the designated state censor and classification of all media, DVD, videos sold in the UK.  I think by today's standards a lot has changed.  Public opinion has changed on what the majority of adults firmly believe in the United Kingdom that they should be allowed to watch, at '18' anything they want as long as it doesn't breach UK law (this is even been proven by the BBFC's own research which they do). Let's face it, how many people coming out of the cinema these days, or after watching a DVD, like let's say Hostel or Saw (which would probably be banned back in the 80's! That shows how much things have changed), or some of the more violent horror movies refer to them now as "video nasties"?  I have yet to hear one person mention or refer to horror movies as a "video nasty" because of its violent or gory content.  I'm 24, and I am a horror fanatic, come to that I love just watching movies.  I have been for a long time.  I love horror movies, and not once has any movie that I have watched made me feel the need to "cause harm to society" by what I have watched.  I think since 1984, the notion of violent films or videos causing harm to people seems kind of absurd these days.  To back it up, there is no real psychological evidence that viewing violent movies could be the cause of anyone getting involved in violence thereafter.  If there is, the brave people at the BBFC who examines DVDs for certificates are very much so corrupted under that test.  I've long believed that if someone is going to do something, whether it be a violent crime or whatever, they are going to do it no matter about whether they've watched this or that.  I don't know how many people may agree or disagree on that, but that's the way I see it. 

Many suggestions on here are asking for most of the VRA to be abolished.  This is not my suggestion at all.  I do not even agree with an "unrated 18" certificate being introduced.  They're forgetting the other laws in the UK, such as Obscene Publications Act, and other relevant legislation.

My idea/suggestion:

The BBFC in my opinion do an excellent role in protecting children and minors from movies that would be entirely unsuitable for them to be watching.  They're experienced, and have the backing of the public when it comes to protecting children from unsuitable material for them.  When it comes to adults however, the BBFC still lacks in some areas.  This has been proven as I have said above by their own research that adults want freedom.  They have told the BBFC in 2005 and again in 2009, that we don't want them telling us what to watch when it comes to movies that are 18 rated.  We don't want people telling us what to watch, unless it breaches the law.  This is where my suggestion solves all these problems, but yet, protects children from unsuitable violent material (also ensures companies are not selling illegal obscene DVDs on the market unwittingly).  My suggestion to the Government is to change the VRA so the BBFC's current '18' certificate does NOT conform to some guideline of "harm" or cutting due to the BBFC's guidelines, but only conforms to the current laws in the United Kingdom which cover obscene material or protection of children (1978 act).  The BBFC when it comes to giving a film or DVD an 18 rating therefore would not be testing it against their own made up set of guidelines, but only going by what would be against the UK law.  Their guidelines is not law.

 For example, let's say if the movie Grotesque (which the BBFC rejected last year because of their harm test [which under my idea would not exist, because there's no real evidence to back it up] and sexual violence policy [a policy of the BBFC's own]) was submitted for an '18' under my idea, it would pass uncut for adults only at 18 because there is no laws being breached under the UK law.  Movies and DVDs that breach current legislation such as protection of children act or obscene material would still be subject to being rejected or cuts, because they would be illegal, and not judged because the BBFC find them unsuitable for adults but because they breach actual law.  The test of harm in the VRA should be replaced by something that would bring effect to my idea.  It would have the backing of the majority of responsible adults in the country that want to see adult movies without BBFC censorship unless the material is illegal, and also to protect younger viewers by still making it illegal to supply age restricted movies.

That way, adults get to see what they want within the law without the BBFC's own guidelines telling adults what to watch at '18', and children are still being protected from age restricted material by keeping the rest of the VRA intact.

Thank you for reading my idea, and I hope it does be considered.  Because today's standards on movies have changed.  Adults are fed up with people telling us what we can't watch because the BBFC consider it to be "harmful".

Barry.

PS: If you back this idea, please comment on it.  It's important to note that unlike other ideas for changing the VRA, mine provides adults to see material within the law and protects children.

Prosecute The Parents, Not The Child.

Instead of blaming the child and following the, frankly, abusive and immoral policy of child criminal responsibility, perhaps societies attention should be more drawn to the adult parent(s). A child who comits any crime could not possibly have understood, grasped or been influenced by the law due to their age and mental ability.

A child's upbringing is absolutely dependant on their parenting. It defies logic that a child could possibly be guilty of a crime. If a child commits an act of crime it is solely the responsibility of the parent for not bringing them up properly. If the argument is that the parent could not control the child then the adult(s) concerned should not be permitted to keep their children as they are unable to parent properly.

Parenting is the single largest responsibility of life and should be met as such by responsible adults.

In addition, the government must repeal the madness of legislation that utterly prevents them dispensing appropriate and responsible discipline. A child cannot be brought up correctly in society if they have no limitations set before them by their parents and influential adults.

There is no excuse for bad parenting, ever. A child can barely understand the concept of the self much before their teenage years let alone criminal responsibility. It is simply unjust to accuse children of crimes that they cannot even attempt to understand.

the criminal age of responsibility should be 18 and not a moment sooner. Until then the child should be the 100% responsibility of the adult parent(s).

Why is this idea important?

Instead of blaming the child and following the, frankly, abusive and immoral policy of child criminal responsibility, perhaps societies attention should be more drawn to the adult parent(s). A child who comits any crime could not possibly have understood, grasped or been influenced by the law due to their age and mental ability.

A child's upbringing is absolutely dependant on their parenting. It defies logic that a child could possibly be guilty of a crime. If a child commits an act of crime it is solely the responsibility of the parent for not bringing them up properly. If the argument is that the parent could not control the child then the adult(s) concerned should not be permitted to keep their children as they are unable to parent properly.

Parenting is the single largest responsibility of life and should be met as such by responsible adults.

In addition, the government must repeal the madness of legislation that utterly prevents them dispensing appropriate and responsible discipline. A child cannot be brought up correctly in society if they have no limitations set before them by their parents and influential adults.

There is no excuse for bad parenting, ever. A child can barely understand the concept of the self much before their teenage years let alone criminal responsibility. It is simply unjust to accuse children of crimes that they cannot even attempt to understand.

the criminal age of responsibility should be 18 and not a moment sooner. Until then the child should be the 100% responsibility of the adult parent(s).

Unify and Celebrate the Age of Majority

Tradionally there used to be a definite transition from childhood to adulthood. The old "I've got the key to the door" at 21. Most societies have marked such a transition.

These days we have different age limits for different rights and the transition has become, to my mind, blurred; the rites of passage abandoned.

I believe that we should consider bringing these separate age lines together. The age at which you can drive, smoke, join the armed forces, consent to sex, vote and so on. Perhaps at 17 or 18. We should encourage a formal rite of passage to be held to mark the transition from child to adult, solumnised by a Church for those so inclined, by secular organisations to those that prefer that.

Why is this idea important?

Tradionally there used to be a definite transition from childhood to adulthood. The old "I've got the key to the door" at 21. Most societies have marked such a transition.

These days we have different age limits for different rights and the transition has become, to my mind, blurred; the rites of passage abandoned.

I believe that we should consider bringing these separate age lines together. The age at which you can drive, smoke, join the armed forces, consent to sex, vote and so on. Perhaps at 17 or 18. We should encourage a formal rite of passage to be held to mark the transition from child to adult, solumnised by a Church for those so inclined, by secular organisations to those that prefer that.

Teenage Discrimination

As part of Teenagers Against Discrimination, i feel it only right to point a few obvious breaches of civil liberties towards Teenagers that is often overlooked.

 

Firstly, the infamous debate over the Mosquito Alarms. For anyone under a certain age to be submitted to an annoying, high pitch sound is a removal of our civil liberties, and it has also been argued (quite rightly in my opinion) that is even a breach of our human rights – why shouldnt we be able to walk down a public street hastle free? who decided that i or any other teenager was a potential criminal that deserved physical punishment?

 

The second point i would like to raise is the police power of stop and search. it is without doubt this power is used reguarly on teenagers ; as it is presumed we will be carrying a weapon or drugs. once again, this is a breach of our civil liberties – why should the police have the right to stop us and search us purely based on the opinion they have made by looking at us. what is that old phrase, can't judge a book by it's cover?

I know it can be argued that if you have nothing to hide, you shuldnt object to being searched… but think about it! we are on about the police stopping you wherever they like and asking you to empty your pockets. it is highly degrading and embarassing. at the very least, every passe rby during this immeadiately presumes you are a criminal. the next time they see you… what will they think? what will they remember? that's right – that you're the person that the police like to stop.

Why is this idea important?

As part of Teenagers Against Discrimination, i feel it only right to point a few obvious breaches of civil liberties towards Teenagers that is often overlooked.

 

Firstly, the infamous debate over the Mosquito Alarms. For anyone under a certain age to be submitted to an annoying, high pitch sound is a removal of our civil liberties, and it has also been argued (quite rightly in my opinion) that is even a breach of our human rights – why shouldnt we be able to walk down a public street hastle free? who decided that i or any other teenager was a potential criminal that deserved physical punishment?

 

The second point i would like to raise is the police power of stop and search. it is without doubt this power is used reguarly on teenagers ; as it is presumed we will be carrying a weapon or drugs. once again, this is a breach of our civil liberties – why should the police have the right to stop us and search us purely based on the opinion they have made by looking at us. what is that old phrase, can't judge a book by it's cover?

I know it can be argued that if you have nothing to hide, you shuldnt object to being searched… but think about it! we are on about the police stopping you wherever they like and asking you to empty your pockets. it is highly degrading and embarassing. at the very least, every passe rby during this immeadiately presumes you are a criminal. the next time they see you… what will they think? what will they remember? that's right – that you're the person that the police like to stop.

Scrap perverse laws extending parental rights past age of majority

Amend the general definition of "parent" in education law, by replacing the phrase "parent" with the phrase "relevant person", as defined below:

"relevant person" means –

(a) in relation to a pupil under the age of 18, a parent of the pupil;
(b) in relation to a pupil who has attained that age, the pupil. 

The definition of "parent" in section 576 of the Education Act 1996 would remain the same.

This simple change would allow 18-year-old men and women attending school to take their own decisions over their own education, as the adults they are.

Why is this idea important?

Amend the general definition of "parent" in education law, by replacing the phrase "parent" with the phrase "relevant person", as defined below:

"relevant person" means –

(a) in relation to a pupil under the age of 18, a parent of the pupil;
(b) in relation to a pupil who has attained that age, the pupil. 

The definition of "parent" in section 576 of the Education Act 1996 would remain the same.

This simple change would allow 18-year-old men and women attending school to take their own decisions over their own education, as the adults they are.