The Parents Television Council (PTC) is urging Congress to pass pending legislation that would update a 2005 law that allows DVDs to be edited or transmitted during playback with DVD-sanitizing technology to create a censored version of a particular movie.
The new measure would also allow filtering services like VidAngel or ClearPlay to filter graphic and sexual content on streaming platforms such as Netflix and Hulu.
"With the quickly approaching end of 2018 and, along with it, the quickly approaching end of this session of Congress, we call on our elected leaders in Washington immediately to pass the Family Movie Act Clarification Act and present it to the President for his signature, thereby providing an important and urgently-needed Christmas present for parents and for families," said PTC President Tim Winter in a press release.
"Major Hollywood studios have filed legal challenges to prevent the use of technological tools that parents could engage to filter age-inappropriate content, this despite the fact that those tools would likely bring new sources of revenue from potentially millions of new customers," Winters noted. "Why would a corporation wage a war against a consumer technology that would earn it more profit? And why would those same corporations spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in Washington DC lobbying fees to kill it? The only plausible answer is that there is an agenda that is more important to the studios than its revenue."
"The Hollywood studios have cleverly but dishonestly painted filtering technology as a tool of copyright piracy. Nothing could be further from the truth. The technology, and the legislation that would authorize its use, simply allows a consumer in his or her own home to choose for himself or herself the specific types of explicit content to be skipped while he or she watches," Winters explained. " Would a book or magazine publisher threaten lawsuits if the consumer chose not to read each and every printed word? Would a studio sue a moviegoer for momentarily plugging his or her ears, or for momentarily closing his or her eyes? Of course not. Hollywood made the same nonsensical claims about the DVD legislation over a dozen years ago. Their objections were wrong then, and they are wrong today."
"We call on the Congress to immediately pass this bill, to present it to the President for his signature, and to deliver a Christmas present to parents and families that will have a long-lasting and positive impact for years to come," he concluded.
The legislation is currently pending in the House.
The PTC, along with more than 30 pro-family groups, is pushing Congress to pass the measure before the current legislative session ends.
To sign the Family Movie Act Clarification Act petition, click here.