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December 10, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), the equivalent of America’s MPAA Ratings Board, said today (Monday) that a study carried out by market researchers ipsos MORI indicates that the public approves BBFC intervention to ban certain films depicting rape, sexual assault and other sadistic violence. While such behavior is regarded as legitimate for filmmakers to explore, the study said, in some instances they have the potential to do harm to “vulnerable” individuals, when, for example, they: “make sexual or sadistic violence look appealing; reinforce the suggestion that victims enjoy rape; invite viewer complicity in rape or other harmful violent activities.” (The study did not explain what it meant by “viewer complicity.”) Applying these standards, BBFC Director David Cooke said, will be “helpful in arriving at a decision which balances freedom of expression against public protection.” The BBFC said it also intends to intervene in cases of films where “a depiction is so demeaning or degrading to human dignity (for example it consists of strong abuse, torture or death without any significant mitigating factors) as to pose a harm risk.”