About.com
November 11, 2003

PRISM Awards Site Opens Community Forum

The Entertainment Industries Council (EIC) which holds the annual PRISM Awards televised event to honor the accurate depiction of drug, alcohol and tobacco use and addiction by Hollywood, has opened a forum and a Speak Out section to give the public the opportunity to express its opinion.

"The Entertainment Industries Council felt that it was important to provide a community-building function into prismawards.com as a major part of the new design," said web site manager Emily Powell Schollian.

"We wanted to give people interested the myriad of issues surrounding addiction, treatment and recovery a place to express their opinions about Hollywood‚s efforts to address these issues."

The PRISM Awards web site has added two new interactive sections to give individuals an opportunity to talk with each other and to express their opinions. The "Speak Out" section allows visitors to become critics, posting comments -- good or bad -- about current television programs or movies. The introduction on the page says:

"Let‚s tell Hollywood what they are doing right! Did you see a movie, tv show or music video that accurately depicted substance abuse, addiction, treatment, and/or recovery? Do you think it‚s content provided true information to viewers? Do you think its message could contribute to decreasing the epidemic of substance abuse and addiction? Tell us, and we‚ll let the creative teams involved in that production know what you think!"

The web site also features a PRISM Forum that allows members to communicate with each other and EIC about current issues and entertainment programs.

The annual PRISM Awards recognizes the accurate depiction of drug, alcohol and tobacco use and addiction in film, television, interactive, music, video, and comic book entertainment. Established in 1997, the PRISM Awards honor productions that are not only "powerfully entertaining, but realistically show substance abuse and addiction," Schollian said.

PRISM Award submissions are put through a rigorous nomination review process, judged by members of the creative community and scientific experts for entertainment value, accessibility of the message, and scientific accuracy, according to the web site. The production in each category that best exemplifies these three objectives is presented with a PRISM trophy at the annual event, held in Hollywood.

The PRISM Awards program is a production of the Entertainment Industries Council, Inc., in partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse, a component of the National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services.