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(6) Because of the personal nature of the advertising of medical products, claims that a product will effect a cure and the indiscriminate use of such words as "safe," "without risk," "harmless," or terms of similar meaning should not be accepted in the advertising of medical products on television stations.
1. Contests should offer the opportunity to all contestants to win on the basis of ability and skill, rather than chance.
2. All contest details, including rules, eligibility requirements, opening and termination dates should be clearly and completely announced and/or shown, or easily accessible to the viewing public, and the winners' names should be released and prizes awarded as soon as possible after the close of the contest.
3. When advertising is accepted which requests contestants to submit items of product identification or other evidence of purchase of product, reasonable facsimiles thereof should be made acceptable.
4. All copy pertaining to any contest (except that which is required by law) associated with the exploitation or sale of the sponsor's product or service, and all references to prizes or gifts offered in such connection should be considered a part of and included in the total time allowances as herein provided. (See Time Standards for Advertising Copy, below.)
PREMIUMS AND OFFERS
1. Full details of proposed offers should be required by the television broadcaster for investigation and approval before the first announcement of the offer is made to the public.
2. A final date for the termination of an offer should be announced as far in advance as possible.
3. Before accepting for telecast offers involving a monetary consideration, a television broadcaster should satisfy himself as to the integrity of the advertiser and the advertiser's willingness to honor complaints indicating dissatisfaction with the premium by returning the monetary consideration.
4. There should be no misleading descriptions or visual representations of any premiums or gifts which would distort or enlarge their value in the minds of the listeners.
5. Assurances should be obtained from the advertiser that premiums offered are not harmful to person or property.
6. Premiums should not be approved which appeal to superstition on the basis of “luck-bearing” powers or otherwise.
TIME STANDARDS FOR ADVERTISING COPY
1. In accordance with good telecast advertising practices, the time standards for advertising copy are as follows:
Length of Advertising Message
(minutes and seconds)
All Other Programs
(minutes) Day and Night Class “A” Time All other Hrs.
7:00 2. Reasonable and limited identification of prize and statement of the donor's name within formats wherein the presentation of contest awards or prizes is a necessary and integral part of program content shall not be included as commercial time within the meaning of paragraph 1 above; however, any oral or visual presentation concerning the product or its donor, over and beyond such identification and statement, shall be included as commercial time within the meaning of paragraph 1 above.
3. The time standards set forth above do not affect the established practice •of reserving for station use the last 30 seconds of each program for station break and spot announcements.
4. Announcement programs are designed to accommodate a designated number of individual live or recorded announcements, generally one minute in length, which are carried within the body of the program and are available for sale to individual advertisers. Normally not more than 3 one-minute announcements (which should not exceed approximately 125 words if presented live) should be scheduled within a 15-minute period and not more than 6 such announcements should be scheduled within a 30-minute period in local announcement programs; however, fewer announcements of greater individual length may be scheduled, provided that the aggregate length of the announcements approximates 3 minutes in a 15-minute program or 6 minutes in a 30-minute program. In announcement programs other than 15 minutes or 30 minutes in length, the proportion of 1 minute of announcement within every 5 minutes of programing is normally applied. The announcements must be presented within the framework of the program period designated for their use and kept in harmony with the content of the program in which they are placed.
5. Programs presenting women's services, features, shopping guides, market information, and similar material, provide a special service to the listening and viewing public in which advertising material is an informative and integral part of the program content. Because of these special characteristics the time standards set forth above may be waived to a reasonable extent.
6. Even though the commercial time limitations of the code do not specifically prohibit back-to-back anouncements, such a practice is not recommended for more than two announcements, either at station break or within the framework of a single program.
7. Any casual reference by talent in a program to another's product or service under any trade name or language sufficiently descriptive to identify it should, except for normal guest identifications, be condemned and discouraged.
8. Stationary backdrops or properties in television presentations showing the sponsor's name or product, the name of his product, his trademark or slogan may be used only incidentally. They should not obtrude on program interest or entertainment. “On camera" shots of such materials should be fleeting, not too frequent, and mindful of the need of maintaining a proper program balance.
DRAMATIZED APPEALS AND ADVERTISING
Appeals to help fictitious characters in television programs by purchasing the advertiser's product or service or sending for a premium should not be permitted, and such fictitious characters should not be introduced into the advertising message for such purposes. When dramatized advertising material involves statements by doctors, dentists, nurses or other professional people, the material should be presented by members of such profession reciting actual experience or it should be made apparent from the presentation itself that the portrayal is dramatized.
SPONSOR IDENTIFICATION Identification of sponsorship must be made in all sponsored programs in accordance with the requirements of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and the Rules and Regulations of the Federal Communications Commission.
The official name of the code is The Television Code of the National Association of Radio and Television Broadcasters. It was enacted effective March 1, 1952, by the television board of directors of the NARTB in accordance with the association bylaws, which read as follows:
*Television board: The television board is hereby authorized : * * * (4) to enact, amend and promulgate standards of practice or codes for its television members and to establish such methods to secure observance thereof as it may deem advisable; * *
The administration of the code is delegated to the Television Code Review Board, composed of five members appointed from among telecast licensees to 2year terms, by the president of the NARTB, subject to confirmation by the television board of directors. Its responsibilities include, among others, the defining and interpreting of words and phrases in the code, the maintenance of appropriate liaison with responsible organizations, institutions and the public, as well as the screening and clearing of correspondence concerning television programing.
In addition to the substantive provisions of the code contained in the present volume, the details of the regulatory and procedural functions of the code and the code review board may be found in the volume entitled “Regulations and Procedures of the Television Code.” For convenience, the headings specified therein are: I. Name; II. Purposes of the Code; III. Subscribers; IV. Rates; and V. The Television Code Review Board.
STANDARDS OF PRACTICE FOR RADIO BROADCASTERS OF THE
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
(Promulgated 1937; revised 1945, 1948, 1954)
(By the National Association of Radio and Television Broadcasters,
Washington, D. C.)
The radio broadcasters of the United States first adopted industrywide standards of practice in 1937. The purpose of such standards, in this as in other professions, is to establish guideposts and to set forth minimum tenets for performance.
Standards for broadcasting can never be final or complete. Broadcasting is a creative art and it must always seek new ways to achieve greater advances. Therefore, any standards must be subject to change. In 1945, after 2 years devoted to reviewing and revising the 1937 document, new standards were promulgated. Now there follows a new and revised Standards of Practice for Radio Broadcasters of the United States of America. Through this process of selfexamination broadcasters acknowledge their obligation to the American family.
The growth of broadcasting is a medium of entertainment, education, and information has been made possible by its force as an instrument of commerce.
This philosophy of commercial broadcasting as it is known in the United States has enabled the industry to develop as a free medium in the tradition of American enterprise.
The extent of this freedom is implicit in the fact that no one censors broadcasting in the United States.
Those who own the Nation's radio broadcasting stations operate them-pursuant to these self-adopted standards of practice--in recognition of the interest of the American people.
The Radio Broadcaster's Creed We believe:
That radio broadcasting in the United States of America is a living symbol of democracy; a significant and necessary instrument for maintaining freedom of expression, as established by the first amendment to the Constitution of the United States;
That its influence in the arts, in science, in education, in commerce, and upon the public welfare is of such magnitude that the only proper measure of its responsibility is the common good of the whole people;
That it is our obligation to serve the people in such manner as to reflect credit upon our profession and to encourage aspiration toward a better estate for all mankind; by making available to every person in America, such programs as will perpetuate the traditional leadership of the United States in all phases of the broadcasting art;
That we should make full and ingenious use of man's store of knowledge, his talents and his skills and exercise critical and discerning judgment concerning all broadcasting operations to the end that we may, intelligently and sympathetically ; Observe the proprieties and customs of civilized society;
Respect the rights and sensitivities of all people;
Enrich the daily life of the people through the factual reporting and analysis of news, and through programs of education, entertainment, and information;
Provide for the fair discussion of matters of general public concern; engage in works directed toward the common good; and volunteer our aid and comfort in times of stress and emergency;
Contribute to the economic welfare of all, by expanding the channels of trade; by encouraging the development and conservation of natural resources; and by bringing together the buyer and seller through the
broadcasting of information pertaining to goods and services. "Toward the achievement of these purposes we agree to observe the following:
Radio is unique in its capacity to reach the largest number of people first with reports on current events. This competitive advantage bespeaks caution-being first is not as important as being right. The following standards are predicated upon that viewpoint.
Nous sources.-Those responsible for news on radio should exercise constant professional care in the selection of sources—for the integrity of the news and the consequent good reputation of radio as a dominant news medium depend largely upon the reliability of such sources.
Newscasting.–News reporting should be factual and objective. Good taste should prevail in the selection and handling of news. Morbid, sensational, or alarming details not essential to factual reporting should be avoided. News should be broadcast in such a manner as to avoid creation of panic and unnecessary alarm. Broadcasters should be diligent in their supervision of content, format, and presentation of news broadcasts. Equal diligence should be exercised in selection of editors and reporters who direct news gathering and dissemination, since the station's performance in this vital informational field depends largely upon them.
Commentaries and analyses.-Special obligations devolve upon those who analyze and/or comment upon news developments, and management should be satisfied completely that the task is to be performed in the best interest of the listening public. Programs of news analysis and commentary should be clearly identified as such, distinguishing them from straight news reporting.
Editorializing.–Some stations exercise their rights to express opinions about matters of general public interest. Implicit in these efforts to provide leadership in matters of public consequence and to lend proper authority to the station's standing in the community it serves, is an equal obligation to provide opportunity for qualified divergent viewpoints.
The reputation of a station for honesty and accuracy in editorializing depends upon willingness to expose its convictions to fair rebuttal.
Station editorial comment should be clearly identified as such. Public issues
A broadcaster, in allotting time for the presentation of public issues, should exert every effort to insure equality of opportunity.
Time should be allotted with due regard to all elements of balanced program schedules, and to the degree of interest on the part of the public in the questions to be presented or discussed. (To discuss is "to sift or examine by presenting considerations pro and con.") The broadcaster should limit participation in the presentation of public issues to those qualified, recognized, and properly identified groups or individuals whose opinions will assist the general public in reaching conclusions.
Presentation of public issues should be clearly identified. Political broadcasts
Political broadcasts, or the dramatization of political issues designed to influence an election, should be properly identified as such. Advancement of education and culture
Because radio is an integral part of American life, there is inherent in radio broadcasting a continuing opportunity to enrich the experience of living through the advancement of education and culture.
The radio broadcaster in augmenting the educational and cultural influences of the home, the church, schools, institutions of higher learning, and other entities devoted to education and culture:
Should be thoroughly conversant with the educational and cultural needs and aspirations of the community served ;
Should cooperate with the responsible and accountable educational and cultural entities of the community to provide enlightenment of listeners;
Should engage in experimental efforts designed to advance the community's cultural and educational interests.
Religion and religious programs
Religious programs should be presented respectfully and without prejudice or ridicule.
Radio broadcasting, which reaches men of all creeds simultaneously, should avoid attacks upon religion.
Religious programs should be presented by responsible individuals, groups, or organizations.
Religious programs should place emphasis on broad religious truths, excluding the presentation of controversial or partisan views not directly or neces-sarily related to religion or morality. Dramatic programs
In determining the acceptability of any dramatic program containing any element of crime, mystery, or horror, proper consideration should be given to the possible effect on all members of the family.
Radio should reflect realistically the experience of living, in both its pleasant and tragic aspects, if it is to serve the listener honestly. Nevertheless, it holds a concurrent obligation to provide programs which will encourage better adjustments to life.
This obligation is apparent in the area of dramatic programs particularly. Without sacrificing integrity of presentation, dramatic programs on radio should avoid :
Techniques and methods of crime presented in such manner as to encourage imitation, or to make the commission of crime attractive, or to suggest that criminals can escape punishment;
Detailed presentation of brutal killings, torture, or physical agony, horror, the use of supernatural or climactic incidents likely to terrify or excite unduly;
Episodes involving the kidnaping of children;
The portrayal of suicide as a satisfactory solution to any problem.
Programs specifically designed for listening by children should be based upon sound social concepts and should reflect respect for parents, law and order, clean living, high morals, fair play, and honorable behavior.
They should convey the commonly accepted moral, social, and ethical ideals characteristic of American life.
They should contribute to the healthy development of personality and character.
They should afford opportunities for cultural growth as well as for wholesome entertainment.
They should be consistent with integrity of realistic production, but they should avoid material of an extreme nature which might create undesirable emotional reaction in children.
They should avoid appeals urging children to purchase the product specifically for the purpose of keeping the program on the air, or which for any reason encourage children to enter inappropriate places. General
Sound effects and expressions characteristically associated with news broadcasts (such as “bulletins," "flash,” etc.) should be reserved for announcement of news, and the use of any deceptive techniques in connection with fictional events and nonnews programs should not be employed.
When plot development requires the use of material which depends upon physical or mental handicaps, care should be taken to spare the sensibilities of sufferers from similar defects.
Stations should avoid broadcasting program material which would tend to encourage illegal gambling or other violations of Federal, State, and local laws, ordin:inces, and regulations.
Simulation of court atmosphere or use of the term "court” in a program title should be done only in such manner as to eliminate the possibility of creating the false impression that the proceedings broadcast are vested with judicial or official authority.
When dramatized advertising material involves statements by doctors, dentists, nurses or other professional people, the material should be presented by members