Codified as amended in scattered sections of 47 U.S.C. (2002).


47 U.S.C. § 303a(b) (2002). The Act applies to all television broadcasters including cable operators, home shopping stations, and educational, and noncommercial broadcasters. Policies and Rules Concerning Children’s Television Programming (Memorandum Opinion and Order), 6 FCC Record 5093, paragraphs 4, 16, 44 (1991). The FCC exempts cable operators in circumstances where a “cable system’s passive retransmission of a broadcast signal and its passive role with respect to access channel programming.” Id. at para. 6. The FCC also exempts noncommercial broadcasters from the “record compilation, filing and submission requirements.” Id. at para 45. Since March 2004, the Act has also applied to direct broadcast satellite (DBS). Implementation of Section 25 of the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992; Direct Broadcast Satellite Public Interest Obligations, 19 FCC Record 5647, paragraph 48 (2004).


Policies and Rules Concerning Children’s Television Programming (Report and Order), 6 FCC Record. 2111, paragraph 3 (1991).


6 FCC Record 5093, paragraph 39.


6 FCC Record 2111, paragraph 44. The FTC also has promulgated rules regulating program-length commercials. These rules mandate certain disclosure requirements for program-length commercials.


Congress enacted the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) in 1998, and the FTC rules implementing the Act went into effect in April 2000. Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule, 16 C.F.R. § 312.1 et seq. (2005) (implementing COPPA).


The FCC also regulates some uses of Internet-related advertising. Under rules promulgated by the FCC, during television programming directed at children 12 years old and under, Internet website addresses can be displayed only if the website offers a substantial amount of bona fide program-related or other noncommercial content, the website is not primarily intended for commercial purposes (including either e-commerce or advertising), the website’s home page and other menu pages are clearly labeled to distinguish noncommercial from commercial sections, and the page of the website to which viewers are directed by the website address is not used for e-commerce, advertising, or other commercial purposes. 47 C.F.R. § 73.670(b) (2004). In addition, website addresses cannot be displayed during a program or the commercials that air during that program if the website uses characters from the program to sell products or services.

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