UK observer advice: If PTC hates it, watch it


It isn’t a fool-proof method of deciding what to watch on television, but a writer for UK newspaper The Globe and Mail has noticed a lot of noise coming from decency watchdog Parents Television Council, and has concluded that if PTC doesn’t like it, it just might be worth checking out.

The writer, John Doyle, summarized the situation, saying, “It seems that broadcast decency rules in the United States have been a bit murky recently. Over the past few years, the Federal Communications Commission has levied both criticism and fines against certain broadcasters after a swear word was broadcast or a buttock was glimpsed on TV. The broadcasters, fed up, challenged the FCC. And several lower courts declined to uphold the FCC’s power to fine broadcast licence holders for violating the broadcast decency law.” Doyle noted that the rules were found to be “unconstitutionally vague and chilling.”

He also noticed that PTC was extending praise to the Obama administration for trying to take a challenge of the lower court ruling to the Supreme Court.

He then noted the many shows which PTC objects to, and in particular, pointed to a number of programs that are merely under development with temporary working titles attached to them, in particular the pilot to be based on the novel “Good Christian Bitches.” He noted protests on a pilot in development based on the Playboy Club which has nothing even scripted yet, much less put forth on the air for PTC’s objection.

Doyle concluded, “The PTC has attacked Glee, Pretty Little Liars, Jersey Shore, 30 Rock and the animated comedy Family Guy, among others. What a list. Here’s my idea – the list of shows condemned or criticized by the Parents Television Council is actually a handy guide to shows worth watching. You know it’s going to be worth a look because the PTC hates it. Dead handy. Bring on those Good Christians, whatever they’re calling the show now. Something to look forward to. Let’s make the indecency wars work for us.”