I just watched the video ‘Bring it on’, by P-Square ft. Dave Scott, for the 100th time and I am so glad I didn’t waste my ‘MB ’downloading it. I can actually watch this video with my youngest sibling without feeling shy or getting to answer questions like, “Aunty Ada, where do they get all these girls that dance half naked from? Don’t they have parents?”
As we constantly advance through time, living day to day as deemed fit by the Almighty; our ability to take note of certain situations and occurrences continues to increase until such a time when nature starts to take its course and senses dwindle. But that’s a story for another day. Today however, our observations aid us in comprehending and totally understanding the ‘way of the world’ as we know it.
With this, our focus is yet turned again, to the world of ‘NIGERIAN MUSIC VIDEOS’ but this time rather than being a celebration of the quality in conceptualization and development; attention is aimed at the seemingly barefaced manner in which indecent exposure and vulgarity is promoted rather than controlled. This piece does not aim to challenge the rights to ‘freedom of expression’ possessed by every individual, but to understand the basis of permitting offensive language, semi nudity and violence to be aired on ‘daytime television’ as seen on various channels. For Christ sake our children are watching!
Recall a situation when I was watching a music video with my dad and he said, “kedu ihe iberibe a na egosi na ‘TiiVi’ ahu? Biko gbanyuo nu ‘TiiVi’ ahu!” (What nonsense are they showing on the TV, switch off that television). During his days, explicit content (whether violence, nudity or strong language) were mostly aired at night. This gesture was certainly positive, even though not 100% full proof, as the stubborn teenagers would sneak out at night to watch television. Nowadays, such a gesture doesn’t seem to hold water anymore, and even though sometimes, attempts are made at blurring out a few really indecent material such as naked breasts, buttocks, the foul language is simply untouched, which seems like a ‘half baked’ approach to say the least.
The most likely ‘counter-argument’ would be the ability to activate the ‘parental control’ sequence, but not every parent is always available and how long would such a measure be upheld? The development of well rounded individual usually involves exposure to various spheres of life ranging from music, arts, science, to technology, from as far back as childhood and total restriction from ‘music channel’ might be seen as harsh, and many distort the youth’s development. The regulatory body on the other hand, I wonder if they are comfortable with these videos and the time they are being aired. The institution constantly puts out material to all broadcast stakeholders to reduce the craze of indecent material being spread which on the local front, seems to be adhered to.
Why does it seem to be ‘non-reflective’ in pay/satellite TV operations, especially when they seem to be primary source of viewing material today? Surely, these operators are subject to the broadcast regulations of the governing body within their geographical location of base and as such, requires them (pay/satellite TV operators) to abide strictly or risk incurring heavy sanctions or even worse. Given the ever growing economic imbalances in the country especially in terms of unemployment, lack of investment, capital and power outages, more and more youth may get sucked into committing hideous acts for fun, and they blame the ‘devil’ while majority of our music celebrities are the ones to be blamed.
Constant exposure to indecent material and sexually explicit content may fuel a ‘lustful rage’ in younger individuals and prompt them to engage in such dishonorable acts that may impact the society negatively as a whole.
While watching various music videos on satellite TV recently. I was able to observe the trend in ‘not beeping sexual swear words’, ‘not blurring out exposure of female body parts’ and ‘not editing violent references’. The most worrisome part of these observations was that these videos were shown in ‘broad daylight’. Does this mean that the regulatory body simply pays ‘lip service’ when it comes to ‘appropriate monitoring’ of the content aired on satellite TV; or is it that traditional case of ‘turning a blind eye’ as commonly practiced in our country? The situation certainly warrants a ‘rapid response’ plan as it constantly fuels the development of a ‘morally decadent’ society which would in turn, would result in extreme negative outcome.
As we continue to encourage a rapidly improving entertainment industry and continue to promote the right to ‘freedom of expression’, a lot more must be done to ensure that ‘freedom of expression’ represents ‘positive expression’ and the music videos are simply visual representations of what they stand for…. MUSIC, GOOD MUSIC!!