RE: Dealing with disturbing content

Cartford@jcl.lib.ks.us
Mon, 25 Feb 2002 16:12:13 -0800 (PST)

As per other comments, if you're going to label some of your videos as
potentially disturbing you'll have to label them all, because you can
*never* tell what someone will find offensive. Trying to do it selectively
will be guessing game you can never win. As long as your titles meet a
curriculum need and fit the selection criteria in your collection
development policy, you should be OK.

My "you can never tell" examples: We've had patron complaints about Sex,
Lies and Videotape, The Devil's Advocate and (I love this) Romey and
Michele's High School Reunion, but nary a peep about Henry and June, The
Lovers or any of the Almodovar/Abril flicks.

Peter Cartford
AV Librarian
Johnson County Library
9875 W. 87th St.
Overland Park, KS 66212
913-495-2496
cartford@jcl.lib.ks.us

-----Original Message-----
From: LeeAnne Krause [mailto:LLKRAUSE@gwm.sc.edu]
Sent: Monday, February 25, 2002 1:02 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: Dealing with disturbing content

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Hi Videolibbers-
Has anyone ever had difficulty knowing how to appropriately deal with
video materials that have possibly disturbing content? For example,
documentaries such as Dreamworlds, or feature films such as Kids or Tin
Drum. Have you ever had complaints from folks who unwittingly checked
stuff out not knowing the content and were offended by it, or do you
find that folks are willing to fend for themselves and not be
hypersensitive? One issue that I'm especially concerned about is those
films which do not fall under the category of recent American features
and therefore don't use the rating system. If something is "R" rated,
then that's probably warning enough, but what about foreign films and
documentaries? We recently got in several items that might be
disturbing to some, and we're trying to determine which of the following
tactics we should try to head problems off:
1- Do nothing- don't treat those items any differently, as long as we're
only circulating to those over 18.
2- Put a warning inside the video/DVD case that the materials contain
explicit content.
3- Verbally warn patrons.
4- Have our catalogers put a warning in the library computer records for
those films.

Which, if any, of these tactics do you use, and what is your degree of
success?
Thanks in advance,
LeeAnne

LeeAnne L. Krause
Manager of Educational Films
USC Film Library
803-777-2858
See our new acquisitions at:
www.sc.edu/library/film.html

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Hi Videolibbers-
Has anyone ever had difficulty knowing how to appropriately deal with video materials that have possibly disturbing content?  For example, documentaries such as Dreamworlds, or feature films such as Kids or Tin Drum.  Have you ever had complaints from folks who unwittingly checked stuff out not knowing the content and were offended by it, or do you find that folks are willing to fend for themselves and not be hypersensitive?  One issue that I'm especially concerned about is those films which do not fall under the category of recent American features and therefore don't use the rating system.  If something is "R" rated, then that's probably warning enough, but what about foreign films and documentaries?  We recently got in several items that might be disturbing to some, and we're trying to determine which of the following tactics we should try to head problems off:
1- Do nothing- don't treat those items any differently, as long as we're only circulating to those over 18.
2- Put a warning inside the video/DVD case that the materials contain explicit content.
3- Verbally warn patrons.
4- Have our catalogers put a warning in the library computer records for those films.
 
Which, if any, of these tactics do you use, and what is your degree of success?
Thanks in advance,
LeeAnne
 
 
LeeAnne L. Krause
Manager of Educational Films
USC Film Library
803-777-2858
See our new acquisitions at:
www.sc.edu/library/film.html< /DIV>
 
 
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