Sunday, February 21, 2010

What Led to the New You Tube Music Rule

I had already discussed with my children that I didn’t want them viewing inappropriate content, no nudity.

Up to this point my kids had not been watching music videos on TV. Honestly I’d not been watching them in the last ten years so I didn’t know what was going on out there.

The new rule is that all new music videos must be previewed by me before my kids can see it. The preview idea for new videos was started when my nine year old asked to see the video for “I Gotta Feeling’” by the Black Eyed Peas (a song he was introduced to while in the car being driven by his friend’s mother, a trustworthy person, a physician!). What happened was I put the video on with my kids there, was horrified, shut it off and told the kids it was inappropriate.

I was surprised to see worse content in the video compared to the song’s lyrics! (Read lyrics here.)

The video had so much flesh – it starts off with a bang!

The female singer Fergie, is getting dressed in high heels and lingerie including thong backed panties, a bra and a boa, as a stripper would dress!

The video shows sexual touching and making out with lots of groping, including male with male and female with female in the presence of others (not even being done in private like was being done in the banned Madonna video from the late 80s!).

The video is a bit kinky with some S&M shown with a black feather teaser and a whip being used on party-goers by Fergie who is dressed a bit like a dominatrix.

Overconsumption of alcohol including young women literally falling down drunk in the street, with lyrics “party every day” and “let’s do it again” (the next day). So much for learning from last night’s (dangerous) binge drinking episode, they plan to do it again the next day!

Take a few mintues to watch this video by the Black Eyes Peas and you’ll see what got my blood boiling when I first discovered it.

Although let’s be honest, these people are adults producing music that could be said to be for adult consumption. We all know teens and tweens can and do see these videos free online, even if MTV is blocked from the family’s TV with parental controls, YouTube is usually wide open. I’ll note also that the Black Eyed Peas were a main performer at the 2009 New Year’s Eve celebration with the Dick Clark (a family show).

Still we parents have a lot on our plates if we want to keep our kids from getting the wrong message about drinking alcohol, responsible behavior and sexual intimacy. Use of the web by kids to access songs they hear on the radio is one way that the Internet can change who are kids are becoming.

Update: I decided to add while fact checking I read something about the female lead singer. These singers are role models to some kids. Girls may compare their bodies to Fergie's and wish for a thin body. Boys may wish that all bodies of girls and women look like Fergie's. I read here that Fergie said she is a former crystal meth user and she kept her weight down with Bulemia. These harsh facts of real life of some music celebrities should be known to tweens and teens who look up to them as role models or at least someone who they wish to emulate in some aspect.


Nicole said...

Thanks for sharing this. My limited experience with this music group led me to believe that their songs were pretty safe, but, apparently not this one. I must continue to be vigilant.

MsB said...

After bumping into 1 too many inappropriate sites on the web, I started using where I can strictly limit what my kids can even have access to. From OpenDNS I can monitor what sites my kids are visiting and block pages that aren't appropriate for them. It's made managing the internet a little easier.

Susan Silver Dill said...

raising wholesome kids, esp. boys, in today's society is so difficult. In our local mall, which we frequent more than we used to due to the new Apple store there, a certain women's lingerie store bought out a whole corner and four stores down a hallway...right off the center court/fountain where families go and sit (and the Apple Store opens on to). Of course, the window displays are outrageous. My oldest two boys (14 and 17) will request that I park near a door that will enable them to avoid that area as much as possible. But it does ruin the family atmosphere there.

Funny though, when we HAD to walk by it one day (to get to another store down that hall), my 14yos said to me "Mom, you look to the left (toward the lingerie store) and I'll look right (toward Abercrombie & Fitch) and we'll both avoid looking at the trash displays". Smart boy. Whew.