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France aims against TV for toddlers

August 21, 2008|From the Associated Press

France's broadcast authority has banned French channels from airing TV shows aimed at children under 3 years old, to shield them from developmental risks it says television viewing poses at that age.

The ruling also ordered warning messages for parents on foreign baby channels that are broadcast in France -- such as Baby TV, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., and BabyFirstTV, which has ties to News Corp.'s Fox Entertainment.

The High Audiovisual Council, in a ruling published Wednesday, said it wanted to "protect children under 3 from the effects of television."

France's minister for culture and communication, Christine Albanel, issued a "cry of alarm" to parents in June about channels dedicated 24 hours a day to baby-targeted programming. In a newspaper interview, she called them "a danger" and urged parents not to use them to help their children get to sleep.

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