47 U.S. Code § 303a - Standards for children’s television programming

(a) Establishment

The Commission shall, within 30 days after October 18, 1990, initiate a rulemaking proceeding to prescribe standards applicable to commercial television broadcast licensees with respect to the time devoted to commercial matter in conjunction with children’s television programming. The Commission shall, within 180 days after October 18, 1990, complete the rulemaking proceeding and prescribe final standards that meet the requirements of subsection (b).

(b) Advertising duration limitations

Except as provided in subsection (c), the standards prescribed under subsection (a) shall include the requirement that each commercial television broadcast licensee shall limit the duration of advertising in children’s television programming to not more than 10.5 minutes per hour on weekends and not more than 12 minutes per hour on weekdays.

(c) Review of advertising duration limitations; modificationAfter January 1, 1993, the Commission—
may review and evaluate the advertising duration limitations required by subsection (b); and
may, after notice and public comment and a demonstration of the need for modification of such limitations, modify such limitations in accordance with the public interest.
(d) “Commercial television broadcast licensee” defined

As used in this section, the term “commercial television broadcast licensee” includes a cable operator, as defined in section 522 of this title.

Editorial Notes

Section was enacted as part of the Children’s Television Act of 1990, and not as part of the Communications Act of 1934 which comprises this chapter.

Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Congressional Findings

Pub. L. 101–437, title I, § 101, Oct. 17, 1990, 104 Stat. 996, provided that:

“The Congress finds that—
it has been clearly demonstrated that television can assist children to learn important information, skills, values, and behavior, while entertaining them and exciting their curiosity to learn about the world around them;
as part of their obligation to serve the public interest, television station operators and licensees should provide programming that serves the special needs of children;
the financial support of advertisers assists in the provision of programming to children;
special safeguards are appropriate to protect children from overcommercialization on television;
television station operators and licensees should follow practices in connection with children’s television programming and advertising that take into consideration the characteristics of this child audience; and
it is therefore necessary that the Federal Communications Commission (hereinafter referred to as the ‘Commission’) take the actions required by this title [enacting sections 303a and 303b of this title].”
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