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Coalition Urges FCC to Prioritize Children's Needs in Media Ownership Review

Oct 25, 2006

The Children’s Media Policy Coalition urged the Federal Communications Commission to protect children’s interests first and foremost before making any changes to media ownership rules.

In comments filed Monday, the coalition argued that any relaxation of existing rules must be accompanied by a requirement that the FCC also analyze the impact of any proposed media mergers on kids served by the market. The coalition is concerned the relaxation of ownership rules will reduce competition, stifling innovation and increasing commercialism in children’s programming.

Research shows that children are particularly vulnerable to the influences of commercialism. The coalition urged the FCC to consider the effects of consolidation on advertising aimed at children, as well as the content of children’s programs.

The coalition also argued that the FCC should limit local broadcasters to one license in a given market in order to ensure sufficient original programming for children.

Citing a 2003 Children Now research study, which shows that media consolidation diminishes the diversity and availability of programming for the child audience, the coalition argued that young viewers must have access to diverse viewpoints in the television programming they so readily consume.

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