Filtering out the profanity on television

Tuesday, September 23rd 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

A device can help parents filter the foul language. It's called the TV Guardian and it can weed out swearing without switching off the set.

News on 6 reporter Patrina Adger says nothing is more frightening for parents than to sit down with the family to watch their favorite show, only to hear profanity on the tube.

"I drank a little too much last night." "If it makes you feel bad why do you drink it!" "Nobody likes a wise***, Jake!" Yikes! And that's an adult talking to a child! "It's suppose to be family hour and they have all those cuss words on shows!" Some Tulsa moms, like Debra McGinnis and Stephanie Honicutt are concerned. They say primetime TV is starting to have an effect on their young children. “I have heard a few slip ups and I'm like 'Oh, no, no, no!"

Shows like ABC's NYPD Blue push the envelope when it comes to using profanity during times when some kids are still awake. But a device called the "TV Guardian" helps cut out cursing, without having to turn off the tube. In a scene from the movie, "Men in Black", the profanity is deleted and replaced with a more acceptable phrase.

Jan Watkins with Lifeway Christian Bookstore, "It does flash out the whole, uh silence out the whole phrase that has profanity or is insensitive. And will insert something else in that but it comes through as close captioning rather than vocal."

You can connect the TV Guardian to your TV or VCR, but the device isn't 100%. It can't block out sexual video and it can’t block audio during live broadcasting.

It does, however, mute negative phrases about God, which is why Norm Armstrong has one in his home. And he's pleased with its effectiveness. "Especially in a Christian home to make sure that I do all the preventative measures to shield them from things they don't need to hear! It is very important because what you hear is what you regularly speak!"

The device is sold in most Christian Book stores and sells anywhere from $60 to $100.

And to give you an example of how effective the product is, the movie, "Men in Black" contains 66 suggestive words and phrases. With the TV Guardian all but one word is filtered out.