Media Rating Systems: Do They Work? Shop Floor Compliance with Age Restrictions in The Netherlands

  • Gosselt J
  • Van Hoof J
  • De Jong M
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Abstract

Media rating systems have been introduced in many countries to protect minors from being exposed to harmful media content. This study examines whether retailers comply with the guidelines of media ratings in the Netherlands. In a mystery shopping study, minors tried to buy or rent media products for which they were too young. An overall success rate of 86% shows that compliance on the shop floor is problematic. In a mystery call study, parents asked vendors for advice about media ratings. Only 33% of the parents were advised in accordance with the age classifications. A survey of vendors investigated the determinants of compliance. Personal acceptance, awareness of a legal basis, and perceived surveillance proved to be important determinants of self-reported compliance.

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Authors

  • Jordy Gosselt

  • Joris Van Hoof

  • Menno De Jong

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