Disney criticized over vague ‘outdated cultural depictions’ advisory

Brittany A. Roston - Nov 14, 2019, 6:35 pm CST
3
Disney criticized over vague ‘outdated cultural depictions’ advisory

Disney has been criticized over what some consider an excessively vague warning on select older movies that feature racist stereotypes and other problematic content. The warning appears at the end of descriptions on select Disney movies like the original Dumbo and Peter Pan. The same advisory is missing from other movies that have faced similar criticism, however, like Aladdin.

It’s no secret that some of Disney’s classic movies and cartoons include depictions of racist stereotypes, including select scenes in some of its most well-known feature films. These movies — with the exception of Song of the South — are offered unedited on the company’s new Disney Plus streaming service alongside a small warning that reads:

This program is presented as originally created. It may contain outdated cultural depictions.

Disney isn’t the only company with such content in its archives. Warner Bros. notably has dealt with the same issue in select episodes of older cartoons like Tom & Jerry. Critics have used Warner Bros. own content warning as an example of a better content advisory, one that is considerably longer and more explicit in its condemnation of problematic scenes.

Warner Bros’ own content warning states that the video…

…may depict some ethnic and racial prejudices that were once commonplace in American society. Such depictions were wrong then and are wrong today. While not representing the Warner Bros. view of today’s society, these shorts are being presented as they were originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming these prejudices never existed.

Disney has been praised for including the advisory on its content, but many critics want to see it updated to be more detailed and more prominently displayed.


Must Read Bits & Bytes