It’s Time to Abolish the Maritime Film Classification Board
Last month’s announcement that the beloved and long-running Quinpool Road film rental store Video Difference, along with its Bedford satellite site, will shut down August 20th and sell off its stock of films brought a range of emotions from its customers.
The store was acclaimed as classy and well-run with a reputation for service and selection. A victim of changing times – like the blacksmith shops of a hundred years ago – the closing of Video Difference marks the end of an age.
With any luck, a bit of long-overdue collateral damage should be the Maritime Film Classification Board. The agency of the provincial government that issues ratings for theatrically played films and video store selections, the MFCB has lost about half of its rather thin reason to exist with the closure of last major video rental store in Halifax.
The system is a dinosaur – a relic from a bygone era. If we really need ratings (a debatable point in the era of free-flowing online information), they can come from either Ontario, or the MPAA in the United States. Nobody needs Nova Scotian film ratings anymore. The old saw of “Community Standards” has been eclipsed by the flood of material on the Internet. Besides, “Community Standards” always brought up the question of “whose community, whose standards?”
So with only three hundred or so films to be classified from now on, it’s time for the Maritime Film Classification Board to be put to bed.