Hoping to head off a government-imposed ratings system, the four broadcast TV networks are seeking to establish their own system for rating their programs for sex and violence, according to published reports.
In meetings this week in New York and Los Angeles, ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox have been discussing the creation of a ratings system similar to the Motion Picture Association of America’s code for movies, The New York Times and The Washington Post reported today, quoting unidentified industry executives.
Establishing the networks’ own system could pre-empt any government effort to impose content ratings, as permitted under the federal Telecommunications Act, which became law last week.
Any such system would eventually enable consumers to screen programs with an electronic blocking device known as a V-chip, with the “V” standing for violence. The law requires all new television sets to be equipped with the V-chip.