47 CFR 73.671 - Educational and informational programming for children.

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§ 73.671 Educational and informational programming for children.
(a) Each commercial and noncommercial educational television broadcast station licensee has an obligation to serve, over the term of its license, the educational and informational needs of children through both the licensee's overall programming and programming specifically designed to serve such needs.
(b) Any special nonbroadcast efforts which enhance the value of children's educational and informational television programming, and any special effort to produce or support educational and informational television programming by another station in the licensee's marketplace, may also contribute to meeting the licensee's obligation to serve, over the term of its license, the educational and informational needs of children.
(c) For purposes of this section, educational and informational television programming is any television programming that furthers the educational and informational needs of children 16 years of age and under in any respect, including the child's intellectual/cognitive or social/emotional needs. Programming specifically designed to serve the educational and informational needs of children (“Core Programming”) is educational and informational programming that satisfies the following additional criteria:
(1) It has serving the educational and informational needs of children ages 16 and under as a significant purpose;
(2) It is aired between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m.;
(3) It is a regularly scheduled weekly program;
(4) It is at least 30 minutes in length;
(5) The program is identified as specifically designed to educate and inform children by the display on the television screen throughout the program of the symbol E/I;
(6) The educational and informational objective and the target child audience are specified in writing in the licensee's Children's Television Programming Report, as described in § 73.3526(e)(11)(iii); and
(7) Instructions for listing the program as educational/informational, including an indication of the age group for which the program is intended, are provided by the licensee to publishers of program guides, as described in § 73.673.
(d) Until analog channels are returned to the Commission, the Commission will apply the following processing guideline to analog stations in assessing whether a television broadcast licensee has complied with the Children's Television Act of 1990 (“CTA”) on its analog channel. A licensee that has aired at least three hours per week of Core Programming (as defined in paragraph (c) of this section and as averaged over a six month period) will be deemed to have satisfied its obligation to air such programming and shall have the CTA portion of its license renewal application approved by the Commission staff. A licensee will also be deemed to have satisfied this obligation and be eligible for such staff approval if the licensee demonstrates that it has aired a package of different types of educational and informational programming that, while containing somewhat less than three hours per week of Core Programming, demonstrates a level of commitment to educating and informing children that is at least equivalent to airing three hours per week of Core Programming. In this regard, specials, PSAs, short-form programs, and regularly scheduled non-weekly programs with a significant purpose of educating and informing children can count toward the three hour per week processing guideline. Licensees that do not meet these processing guidelines will be referred to the Commission, where they will have full opportunity to demonstrate compliance with the CTA (e.g., by relying in part on sponsorship of Core educational/informational programs on other stations in the market that increases the amount of Core educational and informational programming on the station airing the sponsored program and/or on special nonbroadcast efforts which enhance the value of children's educational and informational television programming).
(e) The Commission will apply the following processing guideline to digital stations in assessing whether a television broadcast licensee has complied with the Children's Television Act of 1990 (“CTA”) on its digital channel(s).
(1) A digital television licensee providing only one stream of free digital video programming will be subject to the 3 hour/week Core Programming processing guideline discussed in paragraph (d) of this section on that channel; i.e., a licensee that has aired at least three hours per week of Core Programming (as defined in paragraph (c) of this section and as averaged over a six month period) on its main program stream will be deemed to have satisfied its obligation to air such programming and shall have the CTA portion of its license renewal application approved by the Commission staff. A licensee will also be deemed to have satisfied this obligation and be eligible for such staff approval if the licensee demonstrates that it has aired a package of different types of educational and informational programming that, while containing somewhat less than three hours per week of Core Programming, demonstrates a level of commitment to educating and informing children that is at least equivalent to airing three hours per week of Core Programming. In this regard, specials, PSAs, short-form programs, and regularly scheduled non-weekly programs with a significant purpose of educating and informing children can count toward the three hour per week processing guideline. Licensees that do not meet these processing guidelines will be referred to the Commission, where they will have full opportunity to demonstrate compliance with the CTA (e.g., by relying in part on sponsorship of Core educational/informational programs on other stations in the market that increases the amount of Core educational and informational programming on the station airing the sponsored program and/or on special nonbroadcast efforts which enhance the value of children's educational and informational television programming).
(2)
(i) A digital television licensee providing streams of free digital video programming in addition to its main program stream will be subject to the processing guideline described in paragraph (e)(1) of this section on its main program stream and to the following guideline applied to the additional programming: 1/2 hour per week of additional Core Programming (as defined in paragraph (c) of this section and as averaged over a six month period) for every increment of 1 to 28 hours of free video programming provided in addition to the main program stream. Thus, digital broadcasters providing between 1 and 28 hours per week of free video programming in addition to their main program stream will have a guideline of 1/2 hour per week of core programming in addition to the 3 hours per week on the main program stream. Digital broadcasters providing between 29 and 56 hours per week of free video programming in addition to their main program stream will have a guideline of 1 hour per week of core programming in addition to the 3 hours per week on the main program stream. Digital broadcasters providing between 57 and 84 hours per week of free video programming in addition to their main program stream will have a guideline of 11/2 hours per week of core programming in addition to the 3 hours per week on the main program stream. The guideline will continue to increase in this manner for additional hours of free video programming.
(ii) Broadcasters providing more than one stream of free digital video programming may air all of their additional core programming, apart from the 3 hours of core programming that must be aired on the main program stream, on one free video channel, or distribute it across multiple free video channels, at their discretion, as long as the stream on which the core programming is aired has comparable MVPD carriage as the stream whose programming generates the core programming obligation under the processing guideline described in paragraph (e)(2)(i) of this section.
(3) For purposes of the guideline described in paragraph (e)(2) of this section, at least 50 percent of the core programming counted toward meeting the additional programming guideline cannot consist of program episodes that had already aired within the previous seven days on either the station's main program stream or on another of the station's free digital program streams. This requirement does not apply to any program stream that merely time shifts the entire programming line-up of another program stream and, during the digital transition, to core programs aired on both the analog station and a digital program stream.
Note 1 to § 73.671:
For purposes of determining under this section whether programming has a significant purpose of serving the educational and informational needs of children, the Commission will ordinarily rely on the good faith judgments of the licensee. Commission review of compliance with that element of the definition will be done only as a last resort.
[56 FR 19616, Apr. 29, 1991. Redesignated at 56 FR 28825, June 25, 1991, as amended at 61 FR 43997, Aug. 27, 1996; 70 FR 37, Jan. 3, 2005; 71 FR 64165, Nov. 1, 2006]

Title 47 published on 2013-10-01

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  • 2014-12-10; vol. 79 # 237 - Wednesday, December 10, 2014
    1. 79 FR 73237 - Radio Broadcasting Services; Various Locations
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      FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
      Final rule.
      Effective December 10, 2014.
      47 CFR Part 73

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United States Code

Title 47 published on 2013-10-01

The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to 47 CFR 73 after this date.

  • 2014-12-10; vol. 79 # 237 - Wednesday, December 10, 2014
    1. 79 FR 73237 - Radio Broadcasting Services; Various Locations
      GPO FDSys XML | Text
      FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
      Final rule.
      Effective December 10, 2014.
      47 CFR Part 73