Netflix has vowed to reduce the amount of smoking in its shows, with the iconic streaming service responding to a study from the Truth Initiative…
This news comes just as Stranger Things returns for its third season on Netflix, with the show’s David Harbour character Detective Hopper being one of the most high-profile smokers on the streaming platform.
Although Netflix has announced its intention to remain committed to “artistic expression”, Deadline reports that the streaming service has admitted “that smoking is harmful and when portrayed positively on screen can adversely influence young people.”
In terms of specifics, Netflix has pledged that all its new projects that are aimed at ages 14 and under will be smoke-free, “except for reasons of historical or factual accuracy.”
Netflix states that “there’ll be no smoking or e-cigarettes unless it’s essential to the creative vision of the artist or because it’s character-defining (historically or culturally important).”
Netflix will also start mentioning smoking scenes during the little warnings that come up before episodes, “so our members can make informed choices about what they watch.”
The Truth Initiative’s study found that during a period of time spanning 2016-17, there were 866 instances of cigarettes popping up in Netflix shows. This does include cigarettes in the background and in packets.
It’ll be interesting to see how Netflix’s pledge impacts its output going forward…