To prohibit and to prevent the trade practices known as "compulsory block-booking" and "blind selling" of motion-picture films in interstate and foreign commerce (1939)

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TRADE PRACTICES IN MOTION-PICTURE INDUSTRY 3 PUBLIC DEMAND FOR THE LEGISLATION The pernicious effects of compulsory block booking and blind selling have had the serious attention of various national, regional, and local welfare, religious, and educational organizations for many years. Rarely if ever before has purely remedial legislation received such widespread public support. The organizations and associations which are named in the footnote were represented by spokesmen at the hearing, or submitted memoranda, letters, or telegrams in favor of the bill.4 These vast bodies, with a combined membership of millions, have concluded that the most appropriate and effective means of coping with this situation lies in the enactment of the bill. In addition to these great organizations the prominent leaders in educational, civic, cultural, and social work — named in the footnote — have endorsed the bill.5 The American Association of University Women has been active in studying local offerings of motion pictures and the policies governing their selection. The representative of this organization testified: We believe, with many others who have studied local situations, that, if each community is given the opportunity to help choose motion pictures suitable for the entire family, the results will be increasingly beneficial both to the local community and to the motion-picture industry. The American Home Economics Association advances two reasons why the bill should be passed — one economic, the other in behalf of the promotion of child welfare: The economic reason for our position springs from the fact that the opportunity to choose deliberately and wisely among competing goods is a first principle of wise spending in any field. * * * The child welfare reason for our position on block booking and blind selling springs from the fact that the practice tends to lessen personal and community influence on the character of the pictures shown in a community. This is especially noticeable in so-called neighborhood theaters, to which children easily go. The national board of the Young Women's Christian Associations which is engaged in promoting the spiritual and cultural welfare of young people, expresses the conviction — that compulsory block booking and blind selling are trade practices which limit the freedom of communities in their free choice of films. * American Association of University Women, American Home Economics Association, American Baptist Publication Society, Associated Film Audiences, Association for Childhood Education, Board of Temperance and Social Welfare of the Disciples of Christ, Catholic Boys' Brigade of the United States, Inc., Catholic Central Verein of America, Catholic Daughters of America, Catholic Order of Foresters, Civic Club of Philadelphia, Committee on Moral and Social Welfare of the Lutheran Church in America, Council of Women for Home Missions, Editorial Council of the Religious Press, Federal Council of Churches of Christ in America, Girls' Friendly Society of United States of America, International Order of the King's Daughters and Sons, Inc., Knights of Columbus, Massachusetts Civic League, Motion Picture Research Council, National Board of Young Women's Christian Associations, National Congress of Parents and Teachers, National Council of Catholic Women, National Council of Protestant Episcopal Churches, National Education Association, National Grange, National Motion Picture League, Inc., National Sentinels, National Woman's Christian Temperance Union, National Women's Trade Union League of America, Service Star Legion, Inc., Allied States Association of Motion Picture Exhibitors and the Independent Motion Picture Producers' Association. 5 Ada U. Comstock, Radcliffe College, Cambridge, Mass.; Wr. A. Neilson, Smith College, Northampton, Mass.; Mary E. Woolley, former president of Holyoke College, Holyoke, Mass.; David A. Robertson, Goucher College, Baltimore, Md.; Albert W. Palmer, the Theological Seminary, Chicago, 111.; Bancroft Beatley, Simmons College, Boston, Mass.; John S. Nollen, Grinnell College, Grinned, Iowa; Grady Gammage, Arizona State Teachers College; Robert C. Clothier, Rutgers College, New Brunswick, N. J.; Kenneth M. Sills, Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine; Rev. Samuel K. Wilson, S. J., Loyola University, Chicago, 111.; E. H. Lindley, University of Kansas; George Thomas, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah; Walter Hullihen, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware; J. F. Zimmerman, University of New Mexico; James E. Cox, State Teachers College, Valley City, N. Dak.; Mary J. Workman, Los Angeles, Calif.; Maggie Smith Hathaway, Bureau of Child Protection, Helena, Mont.; Joseph D. Randall, Recreation Commission, San Francisco; Judge August E. Braun, Milwaukee, Wis.; Henry K. Sherrill, Diocesan House, Boston, Mass.; R. A. Cram, of Cram & Ferguson, architects, Boston, Mass.; Arthur Wr. Lowe, superintendent of Portland High School, Portland, Maine; William B. Mills, United States probation officer, Portland, Maine; Walter K. Ulrich, chief United States probation officer, Chicago, 111.; Everett V. Perkins, principal of Kony High School, Augusta, Maine; David A. Durst, superintendent of schools, Pctaluma, Calif.; Dr. Kenneth Wollen, of the Boston Juvenile Court; Dean Claude A. Shull, of San Francisco; Stephen P. Cabot, of Boston.