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Reports & Research

KIDS COUNT Data Book, 2013

California Report Card, 2011-12

The Impact of Industry Self-Regulation on the Nutritional Quality of Foods Advertised on Television to Children, 2009


Educationally/Insufficient? An Analysis of the Availability & Educational Quality of Children’s E/I Programming, 2008

Big Media, Little Kids 2, 2007

The Future of Children’s Media: Advertising, Conference Report, 2007

Digital Television: Sharpening the Focus on Children, Conference Report, 2004

Fall Colors: Prime Time Diversity Report, 2003

Fair Play: Violence, Gender and Race in Video Games, 2001

Local Television News Media’s Picture of Children, 2001

News Media’s Picture of Children, 1999

Reflections of Girls in the Media, 1997

See All Reports & Research



Related News

More Empty Recommendations on Junk Food Marketing to Children (The Huffington Post)

Special Report: How Washington went soft on childhood obesity (Reuters)

Special Report: Does Anyone Care About TV’s Content Ratings? (TV Guide)


Government Agencies Propose Tough Kids/Teens Food Marketing Self-Regs (Broadcasting & Cable)

FCC Explores Improved TV Ratings, V-Chip (National Journal)

See All News



Facts & Figures

Existing research shows that children’s exposure to television advertising for non-nutritious food products is a significant risk factor contributing to childhood obesity.

Since 1996, television broadcasters have been required to air at least three hours of children’s educational programming per week. They are also required to label those programs with an educational/informational icon so parents can identify them.

In 1990, Congress passed the Children’s Television Act to ensure broadcast TV stations provide programming specifically designed to serve the educational needs of children—in return for the free use of publicly-owned airwaves.


A Children Now study found that only one in eight TV episodes labeled “educational/informational” is highly educational. In contrast, nearly twice as many were found to have only minimal educational value.

See All Facts & Figures


Media’s presence in children’s lives is totally ubiquitous. Today, American children spend almost six hours a day with media. The potentially negative consequences of children’s media consumption receive a lot of attention. Yet media’s unique power and reach can also be used to educate children and enrich their lives.

Children spend more time with media than any other activity, except for sleeping.

Television, which once dominated children’s media consumption habits, is now joined by computers, video game players, cell phones and other connected devices. The result is that children today are completely immersed in media experiences from a very young age. Regulating the impact these experiences are having on our children has become very challenging, for parents and policymakers.

Children Now sheds light on media’s impact on children’s health, by working to ensure children’s best interests are served by the nation’s media policies in the areas of advertising to children, media messages about race, class & gender, and TV ratings.

Children Now also covers media’s impact on children’s education, specifically the use of media & technology in education, children’s educational TV, and media ownership consolidation.