Jamaica Bans Daggering

Text from the Broadcast Commission

The Commission assures the public that it continues to actively work with broadcast licensees, the Minister of Information, the Media Association of Jamaica, the Jamaica Association of Community Cable Operators, the Entertainment Fraternity and other stakeholders to bring a halt to the deluge of inappropriate content on the airwaves. The public will have already seen and should continue to expect strong disciplinary action against those who fail to cooperate and comply with the broadcasting regulations.

The Commission has examined a number of songs, popularly referred to as “daggering songs”. “Daggering” is a colloquial term or phrase used in dancehall culture as a reference to hardcore sex or what is popularly referred to as “dry” sex, or the activities of persons engaged in the public simulation of various sexual acts and positions. The Commission has found these recordings to be explicitly sexual and violent, contrary to the provisions of Regulation 30(d) and Regulation 30(l) of the Television and Sound Broadcasting Regulations which state:

30. No licensee shall permit to be transmitted –

(d) any indecent or profane matter, so, however, that any broadcast to which regulation 26 relates shall be deemed not to be indecent; Reg. 30(d)
(l) any portrayal of violence which offends against good taste, decency or public morality. Reg. 30(l)

This content also offends against the tenets of the Children’s Code for Programming. Consequently, the following directive has been issued to Broadcasters:

1. There shall not be transmitted through radio or television or cable services, any recording, live song or music video which promotes the act of ‘daggering’, or which makes reference to, or is otherwise suggestive of ‘daggering’.
2. There shall not be transmitted through radio or television or cable services, any audio recording, song or music video which employs editing
techniques of ‘bleeping’ or ‘beeping’ of its original lyrical content.
3. Programme managers and station owners or operators are hereby required to take immediate steps to prevent transmission of any recorded material relating to ‘daggering’ or which fall into the category of edited musical content using techniques of ‘bleeping’ or ‘beeping’.

The Commission has already recommended to government important changes to the law governing broadcasting and which are intended to be tabled in Parliament soon. The changes include:

• The introduction of financial sanctions for breaches of the regulations. Ensuring that the compilation of music charts is in accordance with an approved methodology.
• Maintaining playlists and programme logs of music played for examination by the Commission and accredited rights agencies.
• Evidence of approval of music sheets and playlists by station management before any song or video is transmitted.
• The arrangements for inclusion of local cable channels within the group of directly regulated operators, further to recent changes in the Broadcasting and Radio Re-Diffusion Act.

The Commission recognizes the critical role that citizens can and should play in monitoring the numerous radio and television channels that exist. In this regard, the Commission encourages continued submission of complaints about problematic content on electronic media. As a response to the increase in broadcasting and cable outlets, the Commission itself will be establishing islandwide Citizen based Media Monitors to assist in more comprehensive and effective monitoring of radio and television output. The media monitors will be drawn from diverse age groups, communities and organizations across the country. The Commission is also accepting volunteers.

Members of the public are encouraged to support the Commission in monitoring the airwaves and reporting any breach of the directive or otherwise transmission of inappropriate content.

The Broadcasting Commission may be contacted at 1-888-99-CABLE (22253). Email messages can also be sent to  info at broadcom.org to report complaints or to seek additional information.


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