Channel One May Have Advertised Adult Soap Opera To Children

November 27, 1997
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It appears that ABC’s steamy
"Port Charles" soap opera was advertised to Channel
One’s captive audience of eight million schoolchildren at least
once this year. We are awaiting a response from Channel One’s
Madison Avenue headquarters, so we have to couch our words with
qualifiers.


This is what is known: Teachers
in several states, including Alabama, have contacted Obligation
and told us a soap opera was advertised at least once in May
of this year on Channel One’s in-school TV show. No teacher can
remember the name of the program. Also, we have a copy of a Los
Angeles Times article that a teacher sent us. It reported that
ABC was aiming a new soap opera called "Port Charles"
to young people. Obligation just received a copy of the article
"ABC Targets Younger Viewers With ‘Port Charles’".
This must be the one.


ABC blatantly talks about their
strategy for this "General Hospital" spin-off.


The article continues – "We’ll
be doing a lot of radio aimed at teenagers for the summer,"
said the ABC marketing chief. "And we’re looking at cross-promotional
opportunities for September and October that will take us into
the schools." "ABC has been extremely aggressive in
marketing ‘Port Charles’ to the audience it wants to attract.
The network has purchased advertising on Channel One, the TV
channel shown in many schools, and has contracted with an advertising
and promotional agency to put ‘Port Charles’ posters in school
gymnasiums and locker rooms."


So we are as certain as we can
be without having a tape that a soap opera was advertised on
Channel One. It appears to be "Port Charles". We await
a response from David Adler with PRIMEDIA to confirm it.


The "Port Charles"
show today (11/26/97) on ABC, features a young man whose live-in
girlfriend leaves for a party and he then invites a married woman
over for a sexual encounter. Here are some of the story lines
taken from "Port Charles web sites": "After Danielle
comes clean with Scott, her Uncle Rex is after her." Nicole
and Chris’s affair is almost discovered despite the secrecy."
"Julie tells Bennett (her dad) that she won’t tell her mother
about his affair with Eve." "Kevin and Lucy lie in
bed, joking about love potions. She teases him about taking advantage
of her." [Like most soap operas sex is between unmarried
couples.] "Karen wants to take Joe to bed after breaking
up with her boyfriend."


"Advertising a soap opera
to children as young as eleven is close to the bottom for Channel
One," said Jim Metrock, president of Obligation. "Alabama
parents and other taxpayers, as well as those across the country,
have no idea what this intruder is doing in our schools."


"Our state superintendent
must realize that support for public education in our state is
being eroded as long as Channel One goes unchallenged."


"Taxpayers paid dearly for
the time that ad (or ads) ran. That is a conversion of public
assets for private profit, it’s sleazy, and citizens will stop
it if our state leaders continue to ignore Channel One,"
Metrock said.