The Federal Communications Commission is preparing to cut back on the regulations that mandate how much children’s programming, and what kind, broadcasters must air to keep their licenses. Variety reports that the agency will take the first step in that process Thursday — and alarms have already been raised among parents groups.
“The rules date to the 1990s, and were put in place after decades of advocacy from parents groups who were frustrated at a landscape of cartoons and live-action shows that were overly commercialized or too full of violence and bluster,” Variety reports. “But since children increasingly watch on demand or on an array of other platforms, some FCC commissioners say that the restrictions are outdated.”
Commissioner Michael O’Rielly, the chief proponent of revising the rules, is quoted writing of the rules in a blog post earlier this year: “Not only are they unnecessary, but after over two decades of experience with the 1996 enhanced regulations, there is scant evidence to indicate that children’s programming on broadcast stations has improved.”