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Does Netflix Have A Smoking Problem? This Group Says So

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Netflix has been called out for featuring excessive smoking in its TV shows. Anti-tobacco group The Truth Initiative claim the streaming giant is responsible for “glamorizing and promoting” smoking after discovering an inordinate amount of “tobacco incidents” in its productions.

Excessive Smoking

The smoking watchdog carried out a study of 14 of the most popular TV shows watched by the 15 – 24 age group during the 2015 – 2016 season.

Spoiler TV

They found that of the seven broadcast shows and seven Netflix productions examined, the streaming site’s content featured 319 “tobacco incidents.” In fact, Netflix shows had twice as many “tobacco moments” than those on broadcast television during the period. But who is doing the most smoking?

The Worst Offenders

Netflix’s supernatural megahit Stranger Things came out on top as the most cigarette-heavy show, with 182 on-camera smoking moments. That was followed by AMC’s The Walking Dead, which had 94 scenes featuring tobacco.

Hello Giggles

Orange is the New Black had 42 incidents, House Of Cards 41, Fuller House 20 and documentary Making A Murderer with 20. ABC’s Modern Family also had 20, with FX’s American Horror Story following with 15. The last was Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt with nine.

Why It’s A Problem

The Truth Initiative claimed the results were worrying because of the number of people under 25 who use streaming services which aren’t restricted in their content like broadcast television. Robin Koval, CEO and president of Truth Initiative, claimed the lack of constraint on streaming platforms has led to “a pervasive reemergence of smoking across screens that is glamorizing and renormalizing a deadly habit to millions of impressionable young people.”

Vulture

The streaming service responded to the criticism by saying they were by interested in looking at the findings in more detail. “While streaming entertainment is more popular than ever, we’re glad that smoking is not. We’re interested to find out more about the study.”

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