TV Head Praises U.S. Drug Policy

TV Head Praises U.S. Drug Policy
Posted by FoM on January 17, 2000 at 13:40:28 PT
By The Associated Press
Source: New York Times
 The head of the most popular television network among teen-age girls says the government should be congratulated -- not condemned -- for trying to insert anti-drug messages in the plots of TV comedies and dramas. The WB network twice sought the advice of President Clinton's anti-drug counselors on scripts for its prime-time shows. But Jamie Kellner, the WB's chief executive, said Monday the network received no financial benefit for pushing a message that discourages drug use. 
``I look at this as the government being very clever in trying to find a way to get a message out that we totally support,'' Kellner said. The WB consistently has one of network TV's youngest audiences, appealing particularly to teen-age girls with shows like ``Dawson's Creek.'' The two programs where it sought government advice on scripts were ``The Wayans Brothers'' and ``Smart Guy.'' Clinton's Office of National Drug Control Policy never asked to see WB scripts in advance; in the two applicable cases, the network volunteered them, Kellner said. ABC executives said over the weekend that they became uncomfortable with Clinton's advisers asking to see scripts of shows before they aired. The WB routinely consults with experts outside government for advice when producing shows, on such issues as teen pregnancy, he said. ``We enjoy doing something that is pro-socially responsible, especially since we reach a younger audience,'' Kellner said. ``I think people should applaud the government for being clever. Normally they pay $500 for a toilet seat.'' Kellner said the WB wouldn't have any problems talking to the White House about scripts in the future, though the network may seek help outside the government to avoid public scrutiny. In addition to advice, Clinton's drug advisers offered broadcasters financial benefits for including anti-drug messages within the plots of entertainment programs. Under the arrangement, the government would let networks out of a commitment to air some anti-drug public service announcements, enabling them to sell the commercial time to other clients. While the WB ran fewer public service ads after it produced anti-drug programming, it did not use the extra time to sell more commercials, Kellner said. Instead, the network ran promotional announcements or other PSAs. Pasadena, Calif. (AP) Published: January 17, 2000Copyright 2000 The New York Times Company Related Articles:ABC, Spelling Out Its Differences With ONDCP - 1/17/2000 Magazine Articles:White House Defends TV Drug-Ad Deal - 1/15/2000 Script Doctors - 1/13/2000 Money, How the White House Secretly Hooked TV-1/13/2000 
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Comment #1 posted by kaptinemo on January 17, 2000 at 15:33:01 PT
God save us from 'clever' governments
This woman obviously has her nose so far up McCaffrey's arse she needs to open her mouth to breathe. I would think someone in the entertainment business would, of all people, tried to avoid such an obvious oxymoron.'Clever', yes. Let's see. That means the people who run it are 'clever'. People like McCaffrey. It was this clever man that praised Mexican General Rebollo for being such a stalwart DrugWarrior... until the good General turns out to be a functionary of the narcos. McCaffrey is still wearing egg on his face about that one.Clever. Yep, when a public referendum in DC passes an MMJ use *law*, the very clever Federal government tries to hide the vote tally from the citizens who voted for it. Rather like the 'clever' governments that are usually referred to in a sneering tone as 'banana republics'.Clever. Huh. John Lennon was all-too-right when he stated the simple obviousness that anything a government touches turns to s**t.
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