Re: Pricing, labelling -Reply

Jessica (
Wed, 8 Dec 1999 08:37:58 -0800 (PST)

Also please keep in mind that most small independent companies DO NOT
subsribe or belong to the MPPA and thus our films ARE NOT RATED. The
majority of foreign art films are not rated. Kino will try to provide enough
plot information on the box for a common sense appraisal of the approriate
age level for viewing. Basically I do not think too many 12 year olds are
rushing to check HAPPY TOGETHER or UTU. Ironically when we put out the THE
TIN DRUM, it never occured to us to put on R rating on the box even though
the film had the rating from its' previous distributor. When all hell broke
loose, the MPPA called and was really pissed that we did not have the
rating on the box. They thought it was some kind of magic bullet that would
protect the film from being attacked as child porn.(incidentally most of the
copies the police seized, including the one from the library were the old
version that DID have the R rating on the box)

Also you NEVER know what someone is going to find offensive. One school
returned a copy of the documentary FILM BEFORE FILM because it contained the
nude torso motion studies from the 19th century.
I long ago gave up trying to judge a film's content for who might be upset
by it.

Jessica Rosner
>From: Leslie Andersen <LeslieA@LHQSMTP.COLAPL.ORG>
>To: Multiple recipients of list <>
>Subject: Pricing, labelling -Reply
>Date: Wed, Dec 8, 1999, 12:35 AM

>Becky - Labeling for some things such as you mention
>(public performance rights, closed captioning, etc.) doesn't
>create any intentional problems as I can see. However,
>putting an additional label for the MPAA rating is treading
>on tenuous ground.
>The MPAA rating system is a PRIVATE, VOLUNTARY
>system developed by the MPAA to assist PARENTS in
>regulating their children's viewing. That is all it is for. It has
>no other purpose (see If a library attaches
>a G, PG, R, etc. label they are thereby endorsing or
>agreeing with that rating. Therefore, if a parent comes to
>you and says, "Why did you let my child check out that R
>video?" and you have an R label on it, your defense loses
>credibility. Without that label, you can simply explain the
>MPAA rating system and its intentions. In this case,
>labeling of this type does violate ALA's Labeling Statement
>IMHO, and puts you in a bad position. As far as I'm
>concerned, libraries should not be using the rating system
>at all when making collection or public service decisions. It
>doesn't have anything to do with us and you are not
>providing better public service by emphasizing it; just the
>Leslie Andersen
>Non-Print Materials Evaluator
>County of Los Angeles Public Library