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Record Labels Lag In Cleanup Of Violence-Report

A new federal report singles out the recording industry for doing virtually nothing to stop marketing violent materials to children, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday.

The Federal Trade Commission report, due out Tuesday, finds that the film and video game industries have made some progress but have not yet eliminated the problem, the newspaper reported, citing sources familiar with the situation.

The “snapshot” report, requested by staff members of the Senate Commerce Committee, will provide a preliminary review of the marketing practices of the film, movie and recording industries.

It will be the first of two follow-ups to a September review of the entertainment industry that was requested by Sen. John McCain, the Arizona Republican who heads the Commerce Committee.

The review stems from the Columbine High School shooting two years ago in Littleton, Colorado, in which two teen-agers shot and killed 12 students and one teacher before killing themselves. After the attack, then-President Clinton asked the FTC to investigate whether the entertainment industry was marketing movies, music and video games with adult themes to children.

McCain has said he will decide after the report’s release whether to hold more hearings on the subject, or whether to wait for a more in-depth report due out in the fall, according to his aides.

The video game industry has been commended for doing the most to clean up its act since the controversy began, according to the Times. The film industry has also made progress, but has been criticized for lack of a uniform marketing standard.

Among record labels, meanwhile, the Recording Industry Association of America has been criticized for its lack of an industry-wide standard sought by the FTC. Instead, the RIAA encourages cooperation between record labels and their artists to determine what material should carry “parental advisory” labels.

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