Morality in Media calls on affils to drop series

A media watchdog group is stepping up its efforts against the NBC drama “The Playboy Club,” pledging Thursday to pressure the net’s affiliates to drop the series.

Morality in Media announced a second phase to a campaign it began earlier in June with the launch of a website, ClosetheClubonNBC.com.

“Today, we begin an effort to contact every NBC affiliate across the country, as well as the top NBC executives, with a message about NBC’s fall series, ‘The Playboy Club,’?” said Patrick Trueman, president of Morality in Media. “That message is this: Sexual exploitation is to be condemned, not programmed on network TV.”

NBC has been steadfast in its defense of the series, which doesn’t premiere until September.

The crux of Trueman’s objection to the series is that NBC has no business associating with a company that profits from the sales of porn. Trueman called on local groups he characterized as numbering “in the hundreds of thousands” through his org’s War on Illegal Pornography campaign to send protest emails to NBC through ClosetheClubonNBC.com.

“Playboy” was already dropped by the NBC station in Salt Lake City, KSL-TV, with ties to the Mormon church, but was picked up by the city’s My Network TV affiliate earlier this week.

A second anti-pornography organization, the Pink Cross Foundation, is also speaking out against the series.

Morality in Media is long known for railing against perceived indecency on TV, from MTV’s “Skins” earlier this year to racy hamburger ads for Carl’s Jr. featuring Paris Hilton in 2005.

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