Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland until I return to the Murcia region of Spain in the Autumn for a month or so
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Thursday, 26 November 2009

"This programme may upset some people"

This is the 'cover yourself legally' warning which is usually trotted out when something upsetting and/or violent is going to be shown on television. I'm just watching a recording of Channel4's pretty good documentary, shown last evening on More4, to mark the first anniversary today of the Mumbai terrorist outrages last year and this is the warning that was issued before the programme and after each ad-break before the programme resumed.

Who would not find such a programme disturbing? Being shown at 10pm, it was way after the 'watershed' when younger children should certainly not be watching. No, it's really often just used as a blanket 'watch your back' legal 'out' in case some viewer claims it has traumatised him/her and tries to sue the makers of the programme for the distress caused. I don't really blame Channel4 for trying to protect themselves in these circumstance, but still it strike me as a bit odd - but that's the society that we live in.

Similar rather idiotic warnings are shown on some packaged food products - one of the most extraordinary being the warnings which often appear on packs of nuts which say something like "Warning - May contain nuts.". I know nut allergy sufferers can become seriously ill, or even die, if they consume products containing even trace amounts of nuts or nut oils so some products where these ingredients may not be obvious do require to bear a warning, but on a pack of nuts? End of rant ... (for now)

NB/ My permament memorial pages in respect of recent terrorist events are linked to fairly near to the top of the right column under the sub-heading 'Memorial Pages', or you can visit the first page in the series here, or go to the Mumbai page direct.

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