Entertainment Council Re-Launching Initiative to Focus on Consequences of Gun Violence

Look for more TV shows and movies to feature the mental health
and other consequences of gun violence in their plot lines.

In the wake of the Sandy Hook shootings, the Entertainment
Industries Council (EIC) said Thursday it is re-launching an initiative to use
TV and movies to address issues related to gun violence.

EIC is a nonprofit whose board of trustees reads
like a Who's Who of entertainment execs, from Barry Diller and Leslie Moonves
to Sherry Lansing and Kim LeMasters.

While Washington policymakers have been focusing on the
issue of media violence's role in real-life violence, the group is emphasizing
the power media can have on stopping that violence by portraying the consequences
and helping discourage gun violence through stories that deal with the mental
health consequences.

"Lethal violence is out of line and now harming the psyche
of our nation. The entertainment industry is an asset in positioning the needed
range of human passion, emotion, hope and concern," said EIC president Brian
Dyak in a statement.

EIC says it will be a resource for writers looking for input
on story lines and characters that address the issue of the effect of gun
violence on kids, and suggests it is a way to address the concern in Congress
over the issue.

"As Congress becomes embroiled in public policy debates and
research is undertaken, it is essential there be clear action steps taken
within the entertainment community to affect attitude and behavior, and promote
understanding," Dyak said in a statement.

Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D- W.Va.) has introduced a bill
calling for a violence study, and the congressional efforts are not likely to
stop there.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.