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Health & Fit'Stranger Things': Netflix Vows To Cut Back 'Harmful' Smoking Depictions in TV Shows

17:46  04 july  2019
17:46  04 july  2019 Source:   newsweek.com

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The Netflix shows depicted smoking more often than broadcast shows . The report counted a jump in the number of tobacco depictions from the first season of Overall, cigarettes accounted for nearly three-quarters of tobacco depictions in these shows , whereas e-cigarettes hardly appeared at all.

Depictions of tobacco in the most popular TV shows among young people surged nearly fourfold in the past year -- and Netflix 's " Stranger Things " season 2 was the worst offender, according to a new report from anti- smoking group Truth Initiative. In response, Netflix said that going forward.

'Stranger Things': Netflix Vows To Cut Back 'Harmful' Smoking Depictions in TV Shows© Netflix Jim Hopper (David Harbour) smokes frequently in Stranger Things.

Netflix has vowed to quit its smoking habit, promising to cut back on depictions of "harmful" cigarette use in its TV shows such as Stranger Things, Orange is the New Black and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

The streaming titan was responding to a study by the Truth Initiative that found, for the past two years, Stranger Things was the worst offender when it came to depicting tobacco consumption on screen.

The anti-smoking national nonprofit pointed out that there was a 44 percent increase in characters' smoking in the show's second season, with 182 examples in season one and 262 in season two. In the 1980s set sci-fi horror series, prominent heroic characters such as Joyce Byers (Winona Ryder) and Jim Hopper (David Harbour) are frequently shown smoking cigarettes. The third season of Stranger Things was released by Netflix on Thursday.

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Image caption Smoking was shown 262 times during season two of Stranger Things . Netflix says it's going to cut back on how often smoking is "While smoking in TV programmes has not been studied as extensively as tobacco imagery in movies, it is reasonable to conclude a similar harmful

Named in a new study for frequent depictions of cigarettes in youth-skewing series like Stranger Things and others, Netflix is vowing to stub out the practice, or at least curtail it, in new projects. While committing itself to "artistic expression," the streaming service responded to a new.

In response, Netflix said that going forward that all original new shows it commissions with ratings of TV-14 or below (PG-13 or below for films) will exclude both smoking and e-cigarette use "except for reasons of historical or factual accuracy."

"Netflix strongly supports artistic expression," said the company in a statement to Variety. "We also recognize that smoking is harmful and when portrayed positively on screen can adversely influence young people," they added.

The streaming service also added that smoking information will all be included as part of its age-appropriate ratings "so our members can make informed choices about what they watch." The information will be rolled out later this year.

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Netflix Worst Offender in Showing Smoking in TV Shows , Watchdog Group Says. Truth Initiative has been among the leading groups urging Hollywood to cease or cut back on depictions of smoking . The MPAA last year announced that it would consider scenes showing adults smoking (along with

“ Netflix strongly supports artistic expression. We also recognize that smoking is harmful and when portrayed positively on screen can adversely influence young people,” a Netflix spokesperson told EW in a statement. “Going forward, all new projects that we commission with ratings of TV -14 or below for

Stranger Things wasn't the only Netflix show to be criticized in the report. The Truth Initiative also found 292 depictions of smoking in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, 233 in Orange is the New Black and 54 in House of Cards. The study also found prominent cigarette use in other youth-oriented TV shows such as Once Upon a Time and Modern Family on ABC, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon and American Horror Story on FX.

According to Truth Initiative, peer-reviewed studies estimate that 37 percent of new youth smoking initiation in the U.S. can be attributed to watching smoking in movies.

"Content has become the new tobacco commercial," said Robin Koval, CEO and president of Truth Initiative in a statement.

"We're seeing a pervasive re-emergence of smoking imagery across screens that is glamorizing and renormalizing a deadly addiction and putting young people squarely in the crosshairs of the tobacco industry. Streaming, broadcast and cable companies are giving the tobacco industry free advertising and young people are paying the price. This report is a call to action to creators, producers, policymakers and the public to change the channel and take smoking out of the picture."

Nearly 16 million Americans are living with a disease caused by smoking, with around 1,300 people dying each day from tobacco-related diseases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


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