FCC Recommits To Daytime Indecency Ban

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The Federal Communications Commission may be considering different ways to put more content-management tools in the hands of parents, but there is one government content-control tool that does not appear to be in danger of being superceded by technology.

The FCC said Monday that time-channeling of indecent content "remains a vital tool" for "shielding children" from "objectionable" broadcast content.

The agency disallows indecent content between 6 a.m and 10 p.m., with the overnight hours considered the "safe harbor" for that material.

While some have argued that a ratings/blocking system would weaken the argument for FCC content control of broadcasting, the commission said in the report that "evidence of the V-chip's limited efficacy" -- translation: not that many people use it -- has only "reinforced the necessity of the commission's regulation."

In addition, the FCC said that channeling maintains the distinction between broadcast fare and that on other media like cable and the Internet: "[S]uch regulation of broadcast television provides some measure of confidence to parents that their children will not encounter the same kind or amount of objectionable content on that medium that they might find elsewhere."

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