Date: 30th January 2001

Copycat Stunt Sets Off Political Furor

MTV has defended itself against charges that it acted irresponsibly by airing a dangerous stunt on its Jackass show that was later copied by a Connecticut youth at home, who suffered second- and third-degree burns as a consequence. In a statement, MTV said: "The show airs with a TV-MA rating and warnings throughout that specifically state, 'The following show features stunts performed by professionals and/or total idiots under very strict control and supervision. MTV and the producers insist that neither you or anyone else attempt to recreate or perform anything you have seen on this show.'" But Connecticut Senator Joseph Lieberman was not willing to let MTV off the hook. "It is irresponsible for MTV to air these kinds of stunts on a program clearly popular with young teens, to air it at a time when many of them are likely to be watching and to do so without adequate warnings," Lieberman said in a statement in which he called on the Viacom-owned cable network to cancel the show or move it to a later hour.

Source: Studio Briefing