Our concern about the media’s role in the creation of our hyper-sexualised society was illustrated during the final episodes of the X-Factor; the family favourite of the autumn season which was watched by almost 20 million viewers, nearly a quarter of whom are believed to children.
The programme featured guest stars Christina Aguilera and Rihanna, two of the world’s biggest female pop stars. Rhianna stripped down to her underwear for her performance and Christina Aguilera indulged in an orgy of pseudo sexual grinding which was totally inappropriate for a pre-watershed broadcast.
Ofcom has received around 1,500 calls of complaint with a similar number made to ITV. The Equalities Minister, Lynne Featherstone, has expressed her dismay as have psychologist Dr Linda Papadopoulos and veteran music producer Mike Stock.
However the last word must go to a Mediawatch correspondent:
As a Social Worker working in Child Protection I was horrified to see the explicit sexual soft porn dancing on The X-Factor. ITV appears to have no responsibility to its public.
The 'Powers that Be' should come and work for a month in Child Protection work, to see the results of children being exposed to soft and hard core porn images. Many of these children then abuse their own siblings and friends and then to adult rape.
When there is another James Bulger case the public will be jumping up and down saying Social Workers should be doing this or that. What children see and hear whether on television, DVDs, etc begins in the home, and if they are fed with sexual images - they will ‘play it out'.
This voice from the ‘sharp end’ is a vivid illustration of just why our campaign is so important. The media must face up to its responsibilities; our children deserve better.