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Guidelines For Children’s Television Advertising

Guidelines For Children’s Television Advertising Resolved

New voluntary guidelines for advertising and sponsorship during children’s television were announced today from a coalition of groups involved in children’s television.

The groups, which include TV2, TV3, advertisers, advertising agencies, New Zealand On Air and the Children’s Television Foundation, have agreed an updated set of guidelines on advertising during programmes for children under the age of 14.
The Acting Minister of Broadcasting, Mr Steve Maharey, today launched the guidelines in a booklet called Getting It Right, produced by the NZ Television Broadcasters Council.

Mr Maharey welcomed the co-operative approach taken by the industry and public interest groups in revising the codes. The result of their efforts maintained a balance between revenue generation and the rights of advertisers and viewers, especially children.

A new rule has been introduced to reduce the repetition of commercials. A commercial screened during children’s programming in mid afternoon on weekdays and on Saturday mornings on TV2 and TV3 can not be repeated more than three times during the time period. This period varies from 90 minutes during the week to three hours on Saturday mornings. In addition, a commercial can be played only twice in any hour period during the same children’s programme times.
Bruce Wallace, Executive Director of the NZTBC, said that the guidelines are “a valuable addition to the interaction of children and television.” He said that “television plays a significant part in the lives of many young people and the guidelines enable them to watch television without being bombarded by commercial images”. He pointed out that parents need to take responsibility for the children’s viewing habits and that television should not be treated as a baby minder.

The guidelines confirm the existing policy of no advertising at all in pre school programmes and the limitation of ten minutes per hour on commercials during programming for school age children under 14.

(A copy of the Getting It Right booklet can be obtained from Bruce Wallace, NZTBC, PO Box 5384, Wellington, ph 04 4991028)

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