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of such profession reciting actual experience or it should be made apparent from the presentation itself that the portrayal is dramatized.

In cases of programs broadcast over multiple-station facilities, the originating station or network should assume responsibility for conforming such programs to these radio standards of practice.


Advertising is the principal source of revenue of the free, competitive American system of radio broadcasting. It makes possible the presentation to all American people of the finest programs of entertainment, education, and information.

Since the great strength of American radio broadcasting derives from the public respect for and the public approval of its programs, it must be the purpose of each broadcaster to establish and maintain high standards of performance, not only in the selection and production of all programs, but also in the presentation of advertising.

Time standards for advertising copy

As a guide to the determination of good broadcast advertising practice, the time standards for advertising copy are established as follows:

The maximum time to be used for advertising, allowable to any single sponsor, regardless of type of program, should be

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The time standards allowable to a single advertiser do not affect the established practice of allowance for station breaks between programs.

Any reference in a sponsored program to another's products or services under any trade name, or language sufficiently descriptive to identify it, should, except for normal guest identifications, be considered as advertising copy.

While any number of products may be advertised by a single sponsor within the specified time standards, advertising copy for these products should be presented within the framework of the program structure. Accordingly, the use on such programs of simulated spot announcements which are divorced from the program by preceding the introduction of the program itself, or by following its apparent signoff should be avoided. To this end, the program itself should be announecd and clearly identified before the use of what have been known as cowcatcher announcements and the programs should be signed off after the use of what have been known as hitch-hike announcements.

Presentation of advertising

The advancing techniques of the broadcast art have shown that the quality and proper integration of advertising copy are just as important as measurement in time. The measure of a station's service to its audience is determined by its overall performance, rather than by any individual segment of its broadcast day.

A radio broadcaster should, in recognition of his responsibility to the public, refuse the facilities of his station to an advertiser where he has reason to doubt the integrity of the advertiser, the truth of the advertising representations or the compliance of the advertiser with the spirit and purpose of all applicable legal requirements.

Programs of multiple sponsorship presenting commercial services, features, shopping guides, marketing news, and similar information, may include more material normally classified as commercial or advertising, if it is of such nature as to serve the interests of the general public and, if properly produced and intelligently presented within the established areas of good taste.

The final measurement of any commercial broadcast service is quality. To this, every broadcaster should dedicate his best efforts.


Any broadcasting designed to buy the radio audience, by requiring it to listen in hope of reward, rather than for the quality of its entertainment should be avoided.

Contests should offer the opportunity to all contestants to win on the basis of ability and skill, rather than chance.

All contest details, including rules, eligibility requirements, opening and termination dates should be clearly and completely announced or easily accessible to the listening public; and the winners' names should be released as soon as possible after the close of the contest.

When contestants are required to submit items of product identification or other evidence of purchase of product, reasonable facsimiles thereof should be made acceptable.

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 limitations heretofore provided. All such broadcasts should comply with pertinent Federal, State, and local laws and regulations.

Premiums and offers

The broadcaster should require that full details of proposed offers be submitted for investigation and approval before the first announcement of the offer is made to the public.

A final date for the termination of an offer should be announced as far in advance as possible.

If a consideration is required, the advertiser should agree to honor complaints indicating dissatisfaction with the premium by returning the consideration.

There should be no misleading descriptions or comparisons of any premiums or gifts which will distort or enlarge their value in the minds of the listeners.


(Adopted October 26, 1954)


The comic-book medium, having come of age on the American cultural scene, must measure up to its responsibilities.

Constantly improving techniques and higher standards go hand in hand with

these responsibilities.

To make a positive contribution to contemporary life, the industry must seek new areas for developing sound, wholesome entertainment. The people responsible for writing, drawing, printing, publishing, and selling comic books have done a commendable job in the past, and have been striving toward this goal.

Their record of progress and continuing improvement compares favorably with other media in the communications industry. An outstanding example is the development of comic books as a unique and effective tool for instruction and education. Comic books have also made their contribution in the field of letters and criticism of contemporary life.

In keeping with the American tradition, the members of this industry will and must continue to work together in the future.

In the same tradition, members of the industry must see to it that gains made in this medium are not lost and that violations of standards of good taste, which might tend toward corruption of the comic book as an instructive and wholesome form of entertainment, will be eliminated.

Therefore, the Comics Magazine Association of America, Inc., has adopted this code, and placed strong powers of enforcement in the hands of an independent code authority.

Further, members of the association have endorsed the purpose and spirit of this code as a vital instrument to the growth of the industry.

To this end, they have pledged themselves to conscientiously adhere to its principles and to abide by all decisions based on the code made by the administrator.

They are confident that this positive and forthright statement will provide an effective bulwark for the protection and enhancement of the American reading public, and that it will become a landmark in the history of self-regulation for the entire communications industry.


General standards—Part A

(1) Crimes shall never be presented in such a way as to create sympathy for the criminal, to promote distrust of the forces of law and justice, or to inspire others with a desire to imitate criminals.

(2) No comics shall explicitly present the unique details and methods of a crime.

(3) Policemen, judges, Government officials, and respected institutions shall never be presented in such a way as to create disrespect for established authority. (4) If crime is depicted it shall be as a sordid and unpleasant activity.

(5) Criminals shall not be presented so as to be rendered glamorous or to occupy a position which creates a desire for emulation.

(6) In every instance good shall triumph over evil and the criminal punished for his misdeeds.

(7) Scenes of excessive violence shall be prohibited. Scenes of brutal torture, excessive and unnecessary knife and gunplay, physical agony, gory and gruesome crime shall be eliminated.

(8) No unique or unusual methods of concealing weapons shall be shown. (9) Instances of law-enforcement officers dying as a result of a criminal's activities should be discouraged.

(10) The crime of kidnaping shall never be portrayed in any detail, nor shall any profit accrue to the abductor or kidnaper. The criminal or the kidnaper must be punished in every case.

(11) The letters of the word "crime" on a comics-magazine cover shall never be appreciably greater in dimension than the other words contained in the title. The word "crime" shall never appear alone on a cover.

(12) Restraint in the use of the word "crime" in titles or subtitles shall be exercised.

General standards-Part B

(1) No comic magazine shall use the word horror or terror in its title.

(2) All scenes of horror, excessive bloodshed, gory or gruesome crimes, depravity, lust, sadism, masochism shall not be permitted.

(3) All lurid, unsavory, gruesome illustrations shall be eliminated.

(4) Inclusion of stories dealing with evil shall be used or shall be published only where the intent is to illustrate a moral issue and in no case shall evil be presented alluringly, nor so as to injure the sensibilities of the reader.

(5) Scenes dealing with, or instruments associated with walking dead, torture, vampires and vampirism, ghouls, cannibalism, and werewolfism are prohibited. General standards-Part C

All elements or techniques not specifically mentioned herein, but which are contrary to the spirit and intent of the code, and are considered violations of good taste or decency, shall be prohibited.


(1) Profanity, obscenity, smut, vulgarity, or words or symbols which have acquired undesirable meanings are forbidden.

(2) Special precautions to avoid references to physical afflictions or deformities shall be taken.

(3) Although slang and colloquialisms are acceptable, excessive use should be discouraged and, whenever possible, good grammar shall be employed.


(1) Ridicule or attack on any religious or racial group is never permissible.


(1) Nudity in any form is prohibited, as is indecent or undue exposure. (2) Suggestive and salacious illustration or suggestive posture is unacceptable. (3) All characters shall be depicted in dress reasonably acceptable to society. (4) Females shall be drawn realistically without exaggeration of any physical qualities.

NOTE. It should be recognized that all prohibitions dealing with costume, dialog, or artwork applies as specifically to the cover of a comic magazine as they do to the contents.

Marriage and sex

(1) Divorce shall not be treated humorously nor represented as desirable. (2) Illicit sex relations are neither to be hinted at nor portrayed. Violent love scenes as well as sexual abnormalities are unacceptable.

(3) Respect for parents, the moral code, and for honorable behavior shall be fostered. A sympathetic understanding of the problems of love is not a license for morbid distortion.

(4) The treatment of live-romance stories shall emphasize the value of the home and the sanctity of marriage.

(5) Passion or romantic interest shall never be treated in such a way as to stimulate the lower and baser emotions.

(6) Seduction and rape shall never be shown or suggested.

(7) Sex perversion or any inference to same is strictly forbidden.


These regulations are applicable to all magazines published by members of the Comics Magazine Association of America, Inc. Good taste shall be the guiding principle in the acceptance of advertising.

(1) Liquor and tobacco advertising is not acceptable.

(2) Advertisement of sex or sex instruction books are unacceptable.

(3) The sale of picture postcards, "pinups," "art studies," or any other reproduction of nude or seminude figures is prohibited.

(4) Advertising for the sale of knives or realistic gun facsimilies is prohibited. (5) Advertising for the sale of fireworks is prohibited.

(6) Advertising dealing with the sale of gambling equipment or printed matter dealing with gambling shall not be accepted.

(7) Nudity with meretricious purpose and salacious postures shall not be permitted in the advertising of any product; clothed figures shall never be presented in such a way as to be offensive or contrary to good taste or morals.

(8) To the best of his ability, each publisher shall ascertain that all statements made in advertisements conform to fact and avoid misrepresentation.

(9) Advertisement of medical, health, or toiletry products of questionable nature are to be rejected. Advertisements for medical health, or toiletry products endorsed by the American Medical Association, or the American Dental Association, shall be deemed acceptable if they conform with all other conditions of the advertising code.



(The advertising code was adopted by the board of directors of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, Inc. (now the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc.), June 10, 1930. It was amended and reaffirmed by the board of directors of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc., July 30, 1947, and further amended December 3, 1947, and June 21, 1950.)


The purpose of the advertising code is to apply to motion picture advertising, publicity, and exploitation, within their range, the high principles which the production code applies to the content of motion pictures.

The provisions of the advertising code shall apply to press books, newspaper, magazine and trade-paper advertising, publicity material, trailers, posters, lobby displays and all other outdoor displays, novelty distribution, radio copy, and every form of motion picture exploitation.

We urge all motion picture producers, distributors and exhibitors, and their advertising agents, whether affiliated with the undersigned or not, to adhere to these principles; and, for ourselves, we pledge compliance with these principles without reservation.


1. We subscribe to a code of ethics based upon truth, honesty, and integrity. All motion picture advertising shall

(a) Conform to fact.

(b) Scrupulously avoid all misrepresentation.

2. Good taste shall be the guiding rule of motion picture advertising.

3. Illustrations and text in advertising shall faithfully represent the pictures themselves.

4. No false or misleading statements shall be used directly, or implied by type arrangements or by distorted quotations.

5. No text or illustration shall ridicule or tend to ridicule any race, religion, or religious faith; no illustration of a character in clerical garb shall be shown in any but a respectful manner.

6. The history, institutions, and nationals of all countries shall be represented with fairness.

7. Profanity and vulgarity shall be avoided.

8. Pictorial and copy treatment of officers of the law shall not be of such a nature as to undermine their authority.

9. Specific details of crime, inciting imitation, shall not be used.

10. Motion picture advertisers shall be guided by the provision of the production code that the use of liquor în American life shall be restricted to the necessities of characterization and plot.

11. Nudity with meretricious purpose and salacious postures shall not be used; and clothed figures shall not be represented in such manner as to be offensive or contrary to good taste or morals.

12. Court actions relating to censoring of pictures, or other censorship disputes, are not to be capitalized in advertising or publicity.

13. Titles of source materials or occupations or names of characters on which motion pictures may be based should not be exploited in advertising or upon the screen if such titles or names are in conflict with the provisions of the production code affecting titles.

14. No text or illustration shall be used which capitalizes, directly or by implication, upon misconduct of a person connected with a motion picture thus advertised.


(The following regulations were adopted by the board of directors of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc., April 22, 1948, and amended June 21, 1950:)

1. These regulations are applicable to all members of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as the "association"), subsidiaries of a member producing or distributing motion pictures, and to all producers and distributors of motion pictures with respect to each picture for which the association has granted its certificate of approval, pursuant to an application therefor.

2. The term "advertising" as used herein shall be deemed to mean all forms of motion picture advertising and exploitation, and ideas therefor, including, among other things, but without limitation thereto, the following: press book: still photographs; newspaper, magazine and trade paper advertising; publicity copy and art intended for use in press books or otherwise intended for use in press books or otherwise intended for general distribution in printed form or for theater use; trailers; posters, lobby displays and other outdoor displays; advertising accessories, including heralds, throwaways, etc.; novelties; copy for exploitation tie-ups; radio and television copy.

The term "company" as used herein shall be deemed to mean any person, firm, or corporation.

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