They are the national arbiters of taste and decency, sitting through thousands of hours of film and TV footage to decide which films and DVDs are fit for public consumption.They have to ask…?
Staff at the British Board of Film Classification are not easily shocked, but they are in revolt over a management plan that would require them to watch hardcore pornographic films alone in a bid to save money.
The BBFC employs about 80 examiners, who currently watch explicit films in pairs, but executives want to extend solo viewing, which has already been introduced for less controversial content. Films released at theatres are still watched by more than one examiner, and "sex works" - a BBFC definition for explicit material - are also viewed in pairs because they often contain scenes that many examiners find offensive.Wouldn’t like to be a fly on the wall at those viewings…
They argue that working in teams make it easier to form a professional judgment about content.
Examiners say films that are refused an R18 certificate often include scenes that many find disturbing, including sadomasochism and sexual violence.But surely, if you are, that means it ‘working as intended’, doesn’t it…?
Some are concerned that viewing pornographic content alone will increase the chances of being sexually aroused by the material.
A spokeswoman for the BBFC, originally called the British Board of Film Censors, said its examiners already view most content alone, although some of it is still watched either by a team or by more senior staff.You mean, the bosses get to watch the really juicy stuff…? Typical.
She confirmed that sex works are currently examined by teams of two, but added that a final decision on the proposed changes had not been taken.
"The BBFC is currently consulting staff about a proposal that sex works should also be examined by examiners viewing alone, but only on the basis that an appropriate policy is in place for having works which are particularly problematic or unpleasant viewed by teams," she said.Well, that covers the next Ben Stiller ‘comedy’ then…
"Difficult or unpleasant issues or material are not confined to sex works."