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3D – Prohibited for Children under 5

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We hung onto our little retro box TV for longer than most but this week we upgraded.  We went from one extreme to the other, now the proud owners of a 42″ LG 3D TV.

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The TV also has a cool function which converts 2D viewing to 3D, great novelty in that.

I had read a few articles which mentioned that 3D viewing can have some negative effects but nothing too alarming.  My impression was that side effects are rare and not cause for excessive concern.

My point of concern however was when I read though the instruction manual (how many people bother to do that?).  There are a number of warnings such as “When watching 3D contents, take 5 – 15 min breaks every hour.  Viewing 3D contents for a long period of time may cause headache, dizziness, fatigue or eye strain.” and “Do not watch 3D videos if you feel nausea, are pregnant and/or have a chronic illness such as epilepsy, cardiac disorder, or blood pressure disease, etc (what on earth does etc stand for in this instance?).

What really struck me however was the section under viewing age which states “Usage / Viewing 3D contents for children under the age of 5 are prohibited“.  There’s a lot more to worry about in this sentence than the bad grammar.  Prohibited is a strong word.  Our children are 5 and 2, had I not read the manual I would have allowed them to sit with the glasses, well maybe not Acacia because she would break them.  This drew my mind to the fact that Fjord has previously been to see 2 3D movies at the cinema before, the 1st when he was 3 years old.  Halfway though that movie he became highly agitated and we went home.

I don’t know what the laws in other countries are but here in South Africa there is no mention at the cinema that children below 5 should not watch a 3D movie.  I feel very strongly that warnings should be clearly displayed on the movie poster the ticket office.  If parents choose to ignore this so be it but for those who would rather not take a chance there should be awareness created.

I am a big believer in ‘all things in moderation’ we will probably let Fjord watch the occasional thing in 3D but will not let Acacia put on those glasses until she is 5.  We probably only watch about 4 hours of TV a week but what about those folk who watch a lot more?

I am always a little wary of new technology for the simple reason that not enough time has passed for negative side effects to emerge or be studied comprehensively.  If time proves contrary to the above I will be only too happy but for now will stick to caution.

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