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NCJ Number: 70713 Find in a Library
Title: Legal Means to Limit the Influence of Mass Media on Crime
Journal: Revue internationale de criminologie et de police technique  Volume:32  Issue:4  Dated:(October-December 1979)  Pages:361-384
Author(s): D Guiton
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 24
Format: Article
Language: French
Country: Switzerland
Annotation: Methods for controlling the effects of mass media on adult and juvenile crime and on certain kinds of criminality are quoted as they are represented in French law.
Abstract: As instruments of culture, communication, ad distraction, the mass media hold great potential for influence on both juveniles and adults. Article 2 of the July 16, 1949 law holds that youth publications must contain no illustrations, narratives, stories, or any other contents that present in a favorable light banditry, lying, theft, laziness, hatred, debauchery, or any crimes or infractions that might corrupt the morals of youth. In an even older law, that of July 29, 1881, article 24 goes so far as to call for the defense of the moral integrity of all people. Thus, any publication favoring acts that are simply immoral can be prosecuted with regard to young readers because they are unable to distinguish between good and evil. The 1881 legislation also refers to all manner of literature or painting that incites the public to crime, and includes in its rhetoric all forms of mass media. In this respect, crimes that have either been committed or simply attempted that can be traced to provocation by the media can be blamed upon the distributors and authors of the material. Articles 630 and 647 of the public health code even allow for prosecution of any materials which could incite weak persons or those so inclined to abortion, to trafficking in drugs or to drug abuse. Moreover, if provocation by the mass media can be traced to a general atmosphere of racial discrimination or political aggression against national security, that provocation is punishable under article 24 of the law of 1881. The provocation can be direct or indirect, in that certain words or a general tone can be inferred as inflammatory. Thus, the law of July 29, 1881 provides for punishment of mass media provocation to crime with fines and imprisonment, while articles 630 and 647 of the public health code cover provocation specifically to trafficking and abusing drugs and to abortion. Sixty-nine footnotes are provided. --in French.
Index Term(s): Crime Causes; Criminal Solicitation; France; Laws and Statutes; Legal liability; Literature; Media coverage; Moral-decency crimes; Violence on television
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