“Bordering on child abuse”

Churches and child protectors want to prevent the broadcast of a planned sex docu-soap on Pro7 afternoon program. From 18. January are to compete in the transmission "50 per semester" five students against each other with the goal of getting as fast as possible 50 women or men into the bed. Hamburg's auxiliary bishop Hans-Jochen Jaschke calls for "a massive punishment by the supervisory bodies."

Jaschke spoke in a report of the "Lubecker Nachrichten" (Thursday) of cheapest voyeurism. "I protest against the humiliation and abuse of human feelings in this TV show. Here love and sex degenerate to pubertaren machohaften plays." Society should not put up with that. With regard to minors who were watching at this time, the planned format bordered on "child abuse," the auxiliary bishop said. "I call for a massive punishment by the supervisory bodies."The state chairwoman of the Child Protection League, Irene Johns, called the concept inhumane. "So much impudence makes speechless." The bishop in the bishopric of Hamburg and Lubeck, Maria Jepsen, called the show repulsive. "It's embarrassing when broadcasters want to try to increase ratings in this way."

Media authority: No hand? According to a newspaper report, the Media Authority Berlin-Brandenburg (MABB), which is responsible for the program, sees no legal grounds for taking action against the broadcast. "We can't force Pro7 to show us the show in advance. That would border on censorship," said Susanne Grams of MABB. Only the broadcaster could of its own accord ask the "Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle Fernsehen" (Voluntary Self-Regulation of Television) for an assessment before broadcasting. Only after the broadcast could media institutions impose fines. The MABB was surprised by the new broadcast concept and appealed to Pro7 to be aware of its responsibility to ensure that content at this time of broadcast is harmless to children of all ages, Grams said. The show, in a "scripted reality" format in which the actors act according to a script, is to be shown for the time being for one week starting at 4 p.m. A spokeswoman for Pro7 said the station would of course abide by youth protection criteria.

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