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Hearst TV Bans 'R' Film Ads Before 9 p.m.

Media: The move, which affects the firm's 26 U.S. stations (none in L.A.), is in response to FTC report.

October 04, 2000|From Bloomberg News and Times Staff Reports

Hearst-Argyle Television Inc. said it won't carry advertisements for R-rated movies on its 26 U.S. television stations before 9 p.m., joining other broadcasters such as ABC and Fox limiting ads in the wake of federal criticisms over the marketing of violent films to kids.

The New York-based company, which carries TV shows from NBC, ABC, CBS and other U.S. networks on its stations, already had an informal policy about ads for R-rated films, which require children under 17 to be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian. In California, the company has stations in the Sacramento and Monterey areas.

Hearst-Argyle's formal limit is the latest media reaction to criticism from a Federal Trade Commission report last month that concluded that entertainment companies systematically market violent movies and TV programs to young children.

"You're not going to keep kids from watching TV after 9 o'clock," said Hearst spokesman Thomas Campo. "The idea being if at least the advertising is restricted until after 9 o'clock, it increases the likelihood that parents will be home."

After the FTC report, U.S. networks, including Fox Broadcasting Co. and Walt Disney Co., said they would limit R-rated ads from programs watched largely by young teens and children.

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