Ottawa, June 27, 2018– The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) today released its decision concerning an episode of La belle gang broadcast on Canal Vie on November 8, 2017 at 6:00 pm. The talk show’s topic of the day was age and sexuality. The CBSC concluded that none of the content was so explicit as to require a post-9:00 pm time slot, so Canal Vie did not violate the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ (CAB) Code of Ethics.
La belle gang is a talk show on which the hosts discuss various subjects with their guests. The November 8 episode contained a number of different segments addressing that day’s topic, including a sexologist showing sex toys, adolescents discussing their views on sex, a comedienne talking about masturbation, and a swinger-porn actor who talked about making pornographic movies with his wife.
A viewer complained about the content of the episode, especially the segment about the swinger-porn actor because it included a blurred clip of him and his wife on the set of a porn movie in which they discussed how to get the best angle of the sexual activity. The viewer wrote that her children had seen the segment and that such content was not appropriate for 6:00 pm. The broadcaster argued that the content was not explicit and pointed out that it had aired viewer advisories.
The CBSC’s French-Language Panel examined the complaint under the CAB Code of Ethics Clause 10 which states that sexually explicit content intended for adult audiences shall not be broadcast before 9:00 pm, and Clause 11 which requires programs to carry detailed viewer advisories if necessary. The majority of the Panel concluded that there were undeniably sexual conversations in the program, but that they were not so explicit as to constitute material “intended exclusively for adults”. Canal Vie was thus permitted to broadcast the episode at any time of day. With respect to advisories, the Panel concluded that the station could have worded them better to alert viewers to the sexual discussions, but they were adequate and did not breach the code. The Panel also observed that, being a talk show, La belle gang was technically exempt from classification, but Canal Vie voluntarily provided a G rating.
The CBSC was created in 1990 by Canada’s private broadcasters to administer the codes of standards that they established for their industry. The CBSC currently administers 5 codes which deal with ethics, equitable portrayal, violence, news and journalistic independence. Around 800 radio stations, satellite radio services, conventional and discretionary television services across Canada participate in the Council.
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All CBSC decisions, codes, and related information are available on the CBSC’s website at . For more information, please contact CBSC Chair, Sylvie Courtemanche, at email@example.com or by telephone at 613-233-4607.