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In 2003, two very interesting quotes were in the newspapers. Parents had been polled and asked who they thought the most influential role-models were in the lives of their preteen sons. The answer: bad boy Bart Simpson was named the top-role model. Parents of children under 12 were asked which made-up character had the most influence on their kids, and spiky-haired Bart came out on top, with 37 percent of parents reckoning that their children looked up to Bart.

Also in 2003, a rising pop-star was attracting a lot of attention, and parents were concerned as they saw their daughters emulating her. So this disclaimer appeared in the press. Britney Spears, the pop princess, told British audiences that parents should not fear if their kids emulate her.

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