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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

TNT Plans Appeal for ‘Dom 2’ Erotica Ruling

Television channel TNT will appeal a court ruling ordering long-running reality show “Dom-2” to be shown only at night, after a group said it was offensive and should be covered by laws on erotica.

On Tuesday, Moscow’s Presnensky District Court ruled that the show could only be aired between 11 p.m. and 4 a.m. It is currently shown at 2:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. as well as twice nightly.

“Dom-2,” on the air since 2004, regularly attracts calls to be taken off the air, and Interior Minister Rashid Nurgaliyev called it “criminal” in April.

Contestants compete to win a house that they are all building. The show’s subtitle is “Build Your Love,” and participants are encouraged to become couples.

TNT general director Roman Petrenko said Wednesday in an e-mailed answer to questions that he was not sure whether the court’s decision related to erotica, as there has not yet been a written judgment.

“We know the laws … and are absolutely sure” that the show complies, he said.

Andrei Richter, head of Moscow’s Media Law and Policy Institute, spoke as an expert in court and confirmed that the case was about whether the show is erotic. It “has erotic elements, but it has other elements, too, such as a competition to get the house,” he said. “You can’t label it as an erotic show.”

The legal definition of erotica, however, is “very vague,” he said.

Under Russian law, erotic material  — “which wholly and systematically exploits interest in sex” — can only be shown after 11 p.m.

Two groups of experts gave conflicting opinions on whether the show is erotic, leaving the judge “basically free to make the decision he wants to make,” Richter said.

The experts who called the show erotic were psychologists Vera Abramenkova, Viktor Slobodchikov and Yelena Pronina, TNT said on the “Dom-2” web site. None could be reached for comment Wednesday.

Slobodchikov and Abramenkova last year gave testimony about two cartoons shown on 2x2, calling them immoral.

Two of the three people who sued are members of the conservative group All-Russia Parents’ Meeting, which also campaigns against sex education in schools.

The “Dom-2” suit was filed by Nadezhda Khramova, of Yekaterinburg, Sergei Davydov, from the Samara region, and Yelena Strekalova, from the Moscow region.

German Avdyushin, the group’s head, said Khramova and Davydov were members but that he did not know Strekalova. Avdyushin said they went to court “on their own initiative” but that he supported them.

“Dom-2 is poisonous information for young people,” he said. “It needs to be stopped once and for all.”

The show’s host, Olga Buzova, disagreed. “Our show is about relationships, about how to understand the other person,” she said in answer to written questions. “Even in night showings of Dom-2 … there is no erotica, only kisses.”