Friday afternoon, the FCC released a Public Notice announcing an extension of broadcasters’ deadlines for certain filings in light of the disruptions being caused by the coronavirus epidemic.
FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly used his speech at the Media Institute’s Free Speech America gala in Washington Wednesday to suggest that the FCC’s children’s TV rules might be unconstitutional, and told those fighting against any changes to the rules that “might want to reconsider their approach lest they end up with the rules being struck down altogether on First Amendment grounds.”
FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly pitched Kentucky broadcasters on his proposal to deregulate children’s TV rules. Generally broadcasters support a lighter touch, but O’Rielly’s pitch was delivered with some tough love. In a speech to the Kentucky Broadcasters Association, O’Rielly ticked off stats showing that kids are increasingly tuning in to mobile devices and tablets for content and less to kids TV.
The FCC on Thursday will take the first step toward easing a set of rules that requires the amount and type of children’s programming broadcasters must provide to maintain their licenses — but the changes have already raised concerns among parents groups.