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Turning off the television

BMJ 1999; 318 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.318.7191.1152 (Published 24 April 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;318:1152

This article has a correction. Please see:

  1. Miriam E Bar-on, chairwoman-elect
  1. Committee on Public Education, American Academy of Pediatrics

    Children and adolescents in the United States spend more time watching television than learning in the classroom. A recent television ratings report, from A C Nielson, found that the average child watches about three hours of television a day (21 hours a week), not including the time spent watching videos. In contrast, he or she usually spends only 38 minutes a week having what the company calls “meaningful conversations” with parents.


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    The company calculates that by the time a child is 18 years old, he or she will have seen 16 000 murders on the screen. Other surveys have concluded that the average child will also see 14 000 sexual references …

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