What is the National Institute on Media and the
Founded by psychologist David
Walsh, Ph.D. in 1996, the Institute is a nonprofit,
national resource center for research, information,
and education about the impact of the media on children
What is the Mission of the National
Institute on Media and the Family?
The mission of the National Institute
on Media and the Family is to maximize the benefits
and minimize the harm of media on children and families
through research, education, and advocacy.
The Institute is a national resource that provides
educational tools and materials to help parents,
teachers, community leaders, and other caring adults
understand the impact of the media, so they can
make informed choices for children.
Is the Institute affiliated with
any political group?
No. The National Institute is not
affiliated with any political or religious organization.
We do develop partnerships with national organizations
and corporations who are committed to maximizing
the benefits and minimizing the harm of media on
children and families.
Is the Institute trying to censor
Absolutely not. The National Institute
on Media and the Family does not endorse censorship
of any kind. We fully support the United States
Bill of Rights and honor the important freedom bestowed
on us with the First Amendment.
The Institute seeks to educate, to
inform, and to provide parents and other caregivers
with the information they need to make appropriate
choices for their children. We develop tools to
help parents and other caring adults understand
medias impact on children. With that
goal in mind, we have developed KidScore, the content-based
ratings system on media products that are likely
to affect children.
here to discover tools that are currently available.
What is the MediaWise Movement?
Launched in 2001, MediaWise is a national
movement designed to help concerned adults "watch
what your kids watch" by building public
awareness of the epidemic of media violence, establishing
community-based training and education programs,
and commissioning careful research to monitor the
ongoing effects of media's influence on children.
Why does the Institute put so
much emphasis on excessive use of, and violence
in, the media?
The statistics are staggering. Excessive
media use among our children has been linked to:
- Increased rates of obesity;
- Impaired brain development, including a proclivity
for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder;
- Poor academic performance and lower reading
- Behavioral problems, ranging from rampant
disrespect and "bad attitudes" to
acts of violence and aggression;
- Increased tobacco use and underage drinking;
- Sexual activity at an early age.
For more information view our Fact
How are the Institute's activities
The Institute receives
grants from foundations and corporations and donations
from individuals. To see a complete list of contributors
see our 2004
Annual Report. If you would like information
on how you or your employer could support the work
of the Institute, click here for information on
becoming a Friend
of the Institute.