TV Parental Guidelines
TV Parental Guidelines

About Us

The TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board is responsible for ensuring there is as much uniformity and consistency in applying the Parental Guidelines as possible. The Monitoring Board does this by reviewing complaints and other public input and by facilitating discussion about the application of ratings among members of the Board and other relevant industry representatives. The Monitoring Board typically meets annually or more often, if necessary, to consider and review complaints sent to the Board, discuss current research, and review any other relevant issues. The Board also facilitates regular calls among industry standards and practices executives to discuss pending and emerging issues in order to promote ratings consistency across companies.

In addition to the chairman, the Board includes 18 industry representatives from the broadcast, cable and creative communities appointed by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), NCTA – The Internet and Television Association, and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), and five public interest members, appointed by the Board chairman.

Chairman

Michael Powell

Michael Powell
President and CEO
NCTA

Representatives

  • 21st Century FOX
  • ABC
  • A+E Networks
  • AMC Networks
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • Boys and Girls Clubs of America
  • Call for Action
  • CBS
  • Discovery, Inc.
  • Entertainment Industries Council
  • HULU
  • Lifetime Networks
  • National PTA
  • NBC Universal
  • Sony Pictures Entertainment
  • Turner Broadcasting System
  • Univision
  • Viacom Media Networks



Contact Us

Do you have a question or complaint about a TV rating or wish to learn more about the TV Parental Guidelines and its oversight?

Contact Us

Our History



February 8, 1996

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 is signed into law by President Bill Clinton. The law called upon the entertainment industry to establish a voluntary television rating system to provide parents with information about material in television programming that would work the V-Chip.

February 29, 1996

All segments of the entertainment industry — led by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), NCTA - The Internet & Television Association and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) — voluntarily pledged to create a television ratings system. The industry formed a Working Group, under the leadership of then-MPAA President Jack Valenti, that represented all segments of the entertainment industry. The Group conducted regional focus groups and a national poll seeking information on what parents might want in a television rating system. They also met and consulted with scores of parental, medical, religious, child advocacy and educational groups to listen to their views on how the parental guidelines system should be structured.

December 19, 1996

The television industry announced the creation of the TV Parental Guidelines, a voluntary system of guidelines providing parents with advance, cautionary information to help them make more informed choices about the television programs their families watch. A TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board (Monitoring Board), comprised of TV industry experts, was also created to help ensure accuracy, uniformity and consistency of the guidelines and to consider public questions and complaints about the guidelines applied to a particular program.

January 17, 1997

The television industry submitted the TV Parental Guidelines to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for consideration. In the spring of 1997, then-Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John McCain (R-AZ) held a hearing on the ratings system and received testimony from child advocacy experts and members of the entertainment industry. Additionally, then-House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Billy Tauzin (R-LA) held a field hearing in Peoria, Illinois. The comments received at the FCC and in these congressional hearings overwhelmingly supported providing additional content information as part of the ratings system.

Spring/Summer of 1997

The television industry, in consultation with the medical and child advocacy community, discussed potential options for revising the TV Parental Guidelines. The following organizations participated in these discussions: the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American Medical Association (AMA), the American Psychological Association (APA), the Center for Media Education (CME), the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF), Children Now, National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP), the National Education Association (NEA), and the National Parent Teacher Association (PTA).

July 10, 1997

The television industry and the public advocacy community announced a revised TV Parental Guideline System consisting of age- and content-based ratings. Download the announcement.

August 1, 1997

NAB, NCTA and MPAA submitted the revised ratings system to the FCC for review. Under this revised system, television programming would continue to fall into one of the six ratings categories (TV-Y, TV-Y7, TV-G, TV-PG, TV-14, TV-MA). Additionally, content descriptors of D (suggestive dialogue), L (language), S (sexual content), V (violence) and FV (fantasy violence — exclusively for the TV-Y7 category) would be included in the ratings where appropriate. Industry also committed to inserting rating icons and associated content symbols for 15 seconds at the beginning of all rated programming, and increasing the size of the icons. Finally, the revised proposal called for the addition of five representatives of the advocacy community to the Monitoring Board. The revised guidelines were supported by leading family and child advocacy groups, as well as television broadcasters, cable systems and networks, and television production companies.

March 12, 1998

The FCC found that the Industry Video Programming Rating System was acceptable and subsequently adopted the technical requirements for the V-Chip.

August 1, 1997

NAB, NCTA and MPAA submitted the revised ratings system to the FCC for review. Under this revised system, television programming would continue to fall into one of the six ratings categories (TV-Y, TV-Y7, TV-G, TV-PG, TV-14, TV-MA). Additionally, content descriptors of D (suggestive dialogue), L (language), S (sexual content), V (violence) and FV (fantasy violence — exclusively for the TV-Y7 category) would be included in the ratings where appropriate. Industry also committed to inserting rating icons and associated content symbols for 15 seconds at the beginning of all rated programming, and increasing the size of the icons. Finally, the revised proposal called for the addition of five representatives of the advocacy community to the Monitoring Board. The revised guidelines were supported by leading family and child advocacy groups, as well as television broadcasters, cable systems and networks, and television production companies.

April 6, 2012

The TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board delivers key findings of a recent survey conducted on the TV Parental Guidelines to the FCC. More than 90 percent of parents say they are aware of the TV Parental Guidelines ratings system, while over two-thirds say they use the ratings to manage their family TV viewing, according to this new study conducted on behalf of the Monitoring Board.

June 12, 2014

The TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board releases key findings of a survey that found almost 95 percent of parents say they are aware of the TV ratings system, while 72 percent of parents say they use the TV ratings system to manage their family TV viewing. Additionally, 84 percent of parents find the TV ratings system helpful.

July 14, 2016

The TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board releases key findings of a recent survey conducted on the TV Parental Guidelines that revealed that 77 percent of parents use the ratings system, an increase from similar studies released in 2014 and 2012. The study also showed that more than nine in 10 parents are aware of the ratings for television programs and some 96 percent of parents polled said they are satisfied with the accuracy of the ratings for shows on television.