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Censorship on MTV has been the subject of debate for years. MTV, the first and most popular musictelevision network in the U.S., has come under criticism for alleged censorship in their programming. Throughout the decades, MTV has altered or removed shows from the channel's schedule to address complaints; and music videos have been censored, moved to late-night rotation, or banned from the channel's rotation for various types of controversial content.
Censorship in full-length programming
The hit show Jackass was subject to frequent censorship in the early 2000s. The popularity of the show, combined with the propensity of young viewers to attempt to imitate the show's risky stunts, led to substantial controversy. Although the show featured prominent warning messages at its start, end, and upon return from all commercial breaks urging viewers not to re-create any stunts seen on the program, nor submit footage to the network of those stunts for casting consideration on that or other MTV series, the show was nonetheless blamed for many injuries. In 2001, then-Senator Joe Lieberman urged Viacom to take more responsibility for the program's content; which led MTV to only air the show after 10p.m. The creators of Jackass expressed frustration over the restraints that MTV's producers imposed on stunts after Lieberman's statement. These limitations eventually led to the departure of several cast members, and to the conclusion of the show. 
MTV's influence also affected its famous animated program, Beavis and Butt-Head. In the wake of a controversy that followed a child burning down his house after allegedly watching the show, producers moved the show from its original 7p.m. time slot to a late-night, 11p.m. slot. Beavis' tendency to flick a lighter and chant the word "fire" was removed from new episodes, and controversial scenes were removed from existing episodes before rebroadcast. Some of the edits were so extensive that when series creator Mike Judge compiled his Collection DVDs he commented that "some of those episodes may not even exist actually in their original form".
The Parents Television Council has argued that much of the censored material on MTV is easily discernible because of the context in which it is presented.
In Michael Jackson's single "They Don't Care About Us", MTV has replaced the words "Jew me" and "kike me" with "do me" and "strike me" in the line "Jew me, sue me, everybody do me / Kick me, kike me, don't you black or white me." Jackson later explained that the song used the words to describe prejudice and that it was poor judgment to select Jewish people as explanatory words.
"This Love" by Maroon 5 had the words "coming" and "sinking" muted out due to possible sexual connotations.
"Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-a-Lot was aired only after 9p.m., due to its depictions of women's bodies. (The station had recently instated a policy against showing female body parts with no reference to a face.)
"Closer" by American industrial rock band Nine Inch Nails was heavily censored when aired on MTV due to sexually explicit imagery that contained a nude bald woman wearing a crucifix mask, NIN frontman Trent Reznor in bondage, and an image of a vulva, along with the song's notorious lyric "I wanna fuck you like an animal." The objectionable content was replaced with a picture that said "scene missing".
Also in 2004, alleged glorification of gun violence led MTV to play an edited version of the video "99 Problems" by Jay-Z between 6p.m. and 6a.m. only.
"Turn Me On" by Riton and Oliver Heldens featuring Vula - all shots where some doctors try to cut out a man's heart, along with the close-up of the man were replaced by completely different scenes due to violence.
This edit was made on MTV's sister channel MTV Hits.
Banned music videos
From MTV in the United States
Several videos have been perceived as too controversial to play on MTV even in censored form, for varying reasons. In the 1980s, parent-media watchdog groups such as the PMRC criticized MTV over certain music videos that were claimed to have explicit imagery of Satanism. MTV has developed a strict policy refusing to air videos that may depict devil worship or anti-religious bigotry.
"Bombs" (Faithless) -- banned over use of violent imagery to convey an anti-war message
"California" (Wax) -- banned due to its depiction of a stunt involving a man on fire
"Closer" (Nine Inch Nails) - banned for depiction of nudity, S&M bondage, a live monkey being strapped to a crucifix, and sexually charged lyrics. An edited version was also made to censor some of the explicit content.
"Erotica" (Madonna) – banned from the MTV music channel but later seen in the Beavis and Butt-head episode "Door to Door"
"Ghost Ride It" (Mistah F.A.B.) -- banned due to allegations of encouraging dangerous driving behavior; as well as copyright complaints about the car used in the video
"Jesus Christ Pose" (Soundgarden) – banned for depicting a blindfolded girl and a mechanical skeleton on a cross, followed by several crosses that flashed repeatedly from upright to inverted positions
"Justify My Love" (Madonna) – banned for containing explicit imagery of sadomasochism, voyeurism, and bisexuality
"Lacquer Head" (Primus) – banned for lyrics describing minors using drugs; the music video also featured a child watching TV while a devilish creature administers gasoline to the child, who then explodes into a frenzy (with the creature riding on him) and ultimately crashing into a wall, burning to ashes
"My Favourite Game" by The Cardigans -- filmed with five different endings; most of which were banned on MTV UK due to fears that the video could encourage joyriding and cause car accidents. The two least-violent endings were eventually selected for MTV UK rotation.
^Liu, Marian (2007-05-14). "Mistah F.A.B. walks the walk". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved . MTV asked for edit after edit on the video, and eventually banned it. Columbia Pictures, which owns the "Ghostbusters" franchise, demanded the video be pulled because it still owned the rights to the likeness of the "Ghostbusters" car and logo, which were altered but used in the video.