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Journal Article

Citation

Bushman BJ, Cantor J. Am. Psychol. 2003; 58(2): 130-141.

Affiliation

Department of Psychology, Iowa State University, W112 Lagomarcino Hall, Ames, IA 50011-3180, USA. bushman@iastate.edu

Copyright

(Copyright © 2003, American Psychological Association)

DOI

unavailable

PMID

12747015

Abstract

This article reviews research on the implementation of media-rating systems, parents' use and evaluation of them, and the impact of ratings on children. Although half or more of parents report using media-rating systems, understanding of various components of the systems is low, particularly for television ratings. A meta-analysis of national polls shows that parents overwhelmingly prefer that ratings specify content, rather than giving age recommendations. A second meta-analysis, of experiments testing the effects of ratings on children's interest in programs, shows that ratings indicating restricted or controversial content have a deterrent effect for children under age 8 but that, by age 11 and especially for boys, the ratings show a small enticement effect. This effect occurs for both age-based and content-based ratings. Implications for policymakers and parents are discussed.


Language: en

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