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Censorship Television Communications Media Movies The Internet

FCC to Develop 'Super V Chip' To Screen All Content 408

Posted by Zonk
from the any-chance-we-could-stop-thinking-about-the-children-now dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Senate Commerce Committee has stepped in and approved a legislation asking the Federal Communications Commission to 'oversee the development of a super V-chip that could screen content on everything from cell phones to the Internet.' Since the content viewed by children is no longer restricted to TV or radio Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., the sponsor of the Child Safe Viewing Act, feels that the new law is necessary. 'The bill requires the FCC to review, within one year of enactment, technology that can help parents manage the vast volume of video and other content on television or the Internet. Under the 1996 Telecommunications Act, TV makers are required to embed the V-chip within televisions to allow parents to block content according to a rating system.'"
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FCC to Develop 'Super V Chip' To Screen All Content

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  • Why not... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by deftcoder (1090261) on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:52AM (#20099787)
    Why not just turn your children over to the government when they're born?

    Parents today obviously have ZERO interest in spending time with their children and monitoring their activities and habits.

    This is ridiculous.
    • Re:Why not... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by liquidpele (663430) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:02AM (#20099863) Journal
      Don't blame the parents! It's the fact that both parents have to work 10 hour/day jobs to afford their HD Cable with on-demand and HBO, 6MB DSL, 4 cell phones with unlimited texting with 2 year contracts, onstar GPS, the Wii, xbox 360, playstation III, netflix account, Tivo Account, gas, electricity, and food.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        And the kids' daycare.
      • Re:Why not... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by zebslash (1107957) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:09AM (#20099939)
        I know also parents that work 10hour/day (and more with sometimes 2 jobs) just to afford the rent, the daycare of their child and basic needs. Not all parents who work a lot just throw away their money.
        • by FatSean (18753)
          Those people cannot afford children. Even with all the free tax credits and rebates subsidized by the child-less people of the USA, these people can't hack it. They made bad decisions and over-estimated their earning potential...and we're all going to get to bail them out of their stupid choices. Wonderful.

      • by GraZZ (9716) <jackNO@SPAMjackmaninov.ca> on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:11AM (#20099949) Homepage Journal
        Don't forget the sub-prime mortgage!
      • Re:Why not... (Score:4, Informative)

        by russ1337 (938915) on Friday August 03, 2007 @09:49AM (#20101293)

        ...work 10 hour/day jobs to afford their HD Cable with on-demand and HBO, 6MB DSL, 4 cell phones with unlimited texting with 2 year contracts, onstar GPS, the Wii, xbox 360, playstation III, netflix account, Tivo Account, gas, electricity, and food.

        The latest Wired magazine has a breakdown of average US household expenses, (I tried to find it online but couldn't). Anyway, from the picture table it was pretty clear that more than two-thirds (~66%) of household expenses go to Telco's/Cable/Tv companies. It was a good prompt for me to revise what services I have vs what I actually need. We now have a pre-pay phone, dropped our DirecTv in favor of free-to-air (timeshifted fav shows with Mythtv) and 2-at-a-time-netflix, and reviewed our internet useage and plan (which didn't change). I'm aiming to drop the standard land-line and go for a VOIP service (Skype calling in) with Cellphone for 911 calls. Overall I think we're saving about $70/month and once the land-line is gone it will be $120/month for very little sacrifice. Ultimately freeing up money to do other things.

        Ultimately there are less things for me to 'censor' cos we simply have less services. I agree that it should be the responsibility for the parents to manage what their children watch / are exposed to, and most providers (e.g directv) offer some form of parental control. If a service does not offer parental control (i.e a standard internet connection), then the parent needs to have a good long look at the service and whether it is appropriate for the child to have access to. if your kid 'has to have' a cellphone, there are plenty without data plans and no access to the internet, and for home based things there are third party solutions like net-nanny, or an Astaro gateway for the household.
    • Re:Why not... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by garcia (6573) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:09AM (#20099933)
      Parents today obviously have ZERO interest in spending time with their children and monitoring their activities and habits.

      Being that I am finally of the age where my friends and co-workers have young children and I myself may soon have a child, I am noticing more and more the teaching and parenting skills that people have.

      Now, I am continuously out and about and watch the result of poor parenting when the little bastard bites your leg [bash.org] but recently I have been noticing a backlash against this. Parents are starting to spank their kids again (in public no less, the horror!), sternly talking to them instead of baby talk and asking what their true feelings are, and generally raising children that aren't going to run out in the middle of the street and then stare at you like it was your fault that you almost hit them.

      What this is, aside from the vocal minority of those parents that are still parentally retarded, is the politicians doing everything they can to create more censorship and centralized control under the guise of saving the children. If anything, these people aren't bad parents because they can't control their brats, it's that they can't control their government.

      Not controlling the government is far more scary than some little shithead not getting to watch Denis Leary call someone a fucking cocksucker and talk about his erection likelihood on Rescue Me.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Spoken like someone who doesn't have children.

      I have four with a 12 year age span. I spend a lot of time with all of them. I can't monitor everything they do, all of the time, and I don't want to.

      Just because they know what they are supposed to do doesn't mean they actually will do it.

      So yes, I use the TV parental controls to keep them from surfing where they should not be. I use McAcfee and SpectorPro on my computer to monitor and set internet access levels and time limits.

      The technology gives pa

      • Re:Why not... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Opportunist (166417) on Friday August 03, 2007 @09:11AM (#20100705)
        No. Actually, that technology give parents the fuzzy good feeling that they're in control. Newsflash: They're not. Did it work when your dad told you you are not supposed to go to that extremely important once-a-lifetime concert? Or did you sneak out?

        Technology alone cannot solve problems. Realize 2 things: First of all, your kids have way more time to figure out ways around your access control than you have to review whether your access controls work. And second, you have no control over the TVs of their friends. Even if your kids can't figure out how to circumvent the V-Chip, they simply go to their friends and watch that video there.
        • I want to opt out. (Score:4, Insightful)

          by FatSean (18753) on Friday August 03, 2007 @10:06AM (#20101615) Homepage Journal
          I want to save money on a feature I'll never use. I want to buy a TV without this Super-V-Chip in it.
          I can't? Oh joy. Perhaps the parents should pay MORE for a TV with MORE FEATURES instead of the government forcing everyone to pay for it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by goldspider (445116)
      Indeed, giving parents the means to easily restrict their children's TV viewing is the worst kind of nanny-state government meddling that faces freedom-loving Americans today.

      Seriously, this isn't any more of a government intrusion than the mandated nutrition information on the side of cereal boxes.

      Come back and cry when the government makes the actual restrictions mandatory.
      • Well, they don't. But let's see how long 'til CPS shows up at your door if hardcore porn is found in your 15 year old's school locker.
    • by bcattwoo (737354)
      So you can comment on what all parents want based on some new technology that the government wants to introduce? It is merely a tool that parents can choose to use or not, not a government mandate.

      And if a parent chose to use this it does not imply that they have ZERO interest in spending time with their children and monitoring their activities. Some day when you grow up and become a parent yourself you will realize that although kids are great you can't watch what they are doing every single freaking se
    • Don't all items already have a universal screener, i.e. the off button? We had "No t.v. week" when I was a kid, and I think it dramatically shaped my view on how (un)important TV really is. If you teach your kids to enjoy a variety of activities, I don't think they'll be all that affected by any of this supposed bad content. Besides, as always, if your kids really want to see the bad stuff, they'll all go over to "mikey's house" or whomever has the good stuff unblocked on their system.
  • ...that Janet Jackson can now show her nipple on tv and it will be OK since nobody will be able to see it?
  • by BrunoBigfoot (996441) on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:56AM (#20099823)
    Unplug the TV.
    • Unplug the TV.

      As my wife and I discovered four years ago, No TV == Much Better Life in general. More time to be with each other, more exercise for ourselves, etc.

      However, it's also a much lonelier life here in America. It makes it hard to make friends when people talk about pop culture and you return a blank stare. (People with TV often have no idea how much of their conversation begins to revolve around what they see on, even to the point of talking about the advertisements!?)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:57AM (#20099831)
    ..carpeting the whole world because we refuse to wear shoes instead.

    It is our obligation, as adults, not to prevent the reality from reaching the senses of minors, but to provide adequate explanations and guidance. Those technical censoring measures are the result of the intention to avoid adult responsibilities, to "sweep the problem under the rug", so to say.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:09AM (#20099937)

      Censoring for Children is like carpeting the whole world because we refuse to wear shoes instead.
      That analogy belies your point. I think V-chips are stupid, but a carpeted world sounds delightfully comfortable.
    • by GreyPoopon (411036) <gpoopon&gmail,com> on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:17AM (#20100027)

      It is our obligation, as adults, not to prevent the reality from reaching the senses of minors, but to provide adequate explanations and guidance. Those technical censoring measures are the result of the intention to avoid adult responsibilities, to "sweep the problem under the rug", so to say.

      Sorry, but I disagree. It is our responsibility as adults to introduce children to reality as they are able to understand the explanations and guidance. A five-year-old is not likely to understand any possible explanation for a violent rape scene that he/she saw on TV. I'm really astounded that people think of the V-chip as censorship. Could somebody explain exactly how a screening tool that can be turned on or off by the owner is censorship? The V-chip is nothing more than a tool. It can be used for good and for bad. Good parents will carefully monitor what their children are watching (either to keep them away from inappropriate content or to explain questionable content). Bad parents will rely solely on the V-chip (a huge mistake) to allow them to shirk their responsibility. I have two children. I use the parental lock-down features on my cable box, but I also monitor what they are watching. The parental lock-down is nice because it cuts down on inappropriate content that may show up while I'm running through channels in the presence of my children. It also makes sure my eight-year-old isn't going to change channels to something that's not suitable for him (or his little sister) while I'm in the bathroom. But I'm also fully aware that it is not a substitute for responsible parenting. Some channels don't include rating informations for all shows (The Science Fiction channel and HDNet are two notable offenders), and the most questionable content comes from the commercials rather than the programming itself. Therefore, I make sure I'm there to explain behavior that is and is not appropriate. I like the V-chip as a tool, and nothing more. These laws aren't about mandating that people _use_ the V-chip. They are about making sure that it's available for those who _want_ to use it.
      • by mdwh2 (535323) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:23AM (#20100087) Journal
        Could somebody explain exactly how a screening tool that can be turned on or off by the owner is censorship? ... These laws aren't about mandating that people _use_ the V-chip.

        True, but it is mandating (I think) that every adult has to pay for it, presumably in everything from computers to phones, which is still an issue. What's wrong with overseeing the development to make it available as an option to those who want it?

        There's also the question of how they intend to implement a rating system for the Internet.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by GreyPoopon (411036)

          True, but it is mandating (I think) that every adult has to pay for it, presumably in everything from computers to phones, which is still an issue. What's wrong with overseeing the development to make it available as an option to those who want it?

          For television content, I suspect the cost is negligible. However, I would have no problem if it were just an available option that we have to pay a little extra for if we want it.

          There's also the question of how they intend to implement a rating system f

      • by plague3106 (71849)
        Sorry, but I disagree. It is our responsibility as adults to introduce children to reality as they are able to understand the explanations and guidance.

        Let me fix this for you.

        Sorry, but I disagree. It is your responsibility as [a parent] to introduce children to reality as they are able to understand the explanations and guidance.

        Its not your god given right to watch or even own a TV. It was YOUR choice to have a child, YOU pay the expense of raising it. I personally don't give a damn if there's another
    • by rpillala (583965)

      This is not censorship. No outside agency is requiring studios and telephone providers to use V-chips on their end to prevent you from seeing objectionable things. This is on your end to allow blocking of material based on standards you determine (to some extent.) On one hand, parents should take a specific interest in what their kids are watching. On the other hand, kids work every single gray area they can find. Including a V-chip in the TV set certainly would allow parents to block things while they

  • From TFA

    The government's indecency rules do not apply to cable or the Internet. A series of laws attempting to regulate speech on the Internet have failed.
    I don't know about the US, but here in the UK most of the people I know get all their broadcast output via cable or the Internet.

    When they change that ruling, then we need to worry.
  • All content? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by captainboogerhead (228216) on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:57AM (#20099835) Journal
    ...except commercials.
  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:57AM (#20099837) Journal
    I don't, I have a preteen kid. Among my friends almost nobody uses the V-chip. Infact half of them dont even know their TV has the V-Chip. And those who know find it a pain to set up thresholds and remember the password. The only person I know who knows how to use the V-Chip is my brother's 10 year old son. He is a remarkably curious boy who reads all the manuals and figures out things mainly to annoy the adults. He would set the V-chip threshold very low (or high, I dont know the parlance) and make his mom scream, in a strange mixture of admiration and admonition, "You make the TV play Law-and-Order now or I am going to ground you for a week!" and the boy would laugh and giggle.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by sesshomaru (173381)
      Hmm... the V-Chip might actually have some utility if it allows smart kids to protect their moms from Law and Order...
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Doc Lazarus (1081525)
      The most interesting bit: if a kid can figure out a V-chip, then why are we holding anything back from them? It seems they're more mature than their parents and much more capable of rational thought than their parents are giving them credit for. But, let it far from me to suggest that the parents are censoring their kids to prevent them from answering questions instead of the kid's incapability of grasping the answer....
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Belial6 (794905)
        That is a fine point. Even more so, our society has redefined the word "kid". What in the hell are we doing calling 13, 14 and 15 year olds "kids". People of these ages have gone to war, run nations, built nations, had children, run households, committed horrendous crimes, and brought others who have committed horrendous crimes to justice. For thousands of years, puberty was the defining line between child and adult, and in just a few generations, we have retarded our entire population. The fact that w
  • by b0s0z0ku (752509) on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:57AM (#20099839)
    Broadcasters and creators do. The v-chip just responds to rating data encoded in the signal and can block or allow showing depending on the parents' choices.

    -b.

    • by Applekid (993327)
      Since this thing is going to be in all communication devices, does that mean I have to register my voice as adults-only since I might say a few swears?

      How long before we get Demolition Man style naughty language fines?
    • I'm sure not going to waste my time applying a rating to my own blog, or individual post.
  • by j.sanchez1 (1030764) on Friday August 03, 2007 @07:57AM (#20099841)
    Does anyone not wonder what has happened to parental responsibility? I know what my kids watch on tv, movies they watch and what sites they visit on the internet, all without government intervention. This will just be another crutch for the negligent parents to use.
  • something as complex as one of these here deep packet inspection thingys, and even that will fail against determined content providers. http://arstechnica.com/articles/culture/Deep-packe t-inspection-meets-net-neutrality.ars [arstechnica.com]

    Wherever there's a person going through puberty, there you will most likely find prurient material.

  • by glindsey (73730) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:05AM (#20099887)
    So every form of content that exists will require a mandatory rating by some sort of standards body? Because, after all, that's how the V-chip works at the moment.

    Yeah, good luck with that, folks.
  • by NJVil (154697) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:05AM (#20099891)
    Last night I went out to dinner with two close friends. As we watched, a mother semi-ignored her 4 or 5 year old girl as she cried and screamed and jumped up and down in a royal temper tantrum. It seems mom was too busy chatting with her friend to notice as the girl bellowed at the top of her lungs even as one of the waiters came over and offered the girl a balloon to silence the child. The mother occasionally glanced at the girl and said things like "It's okay." and "What's wrong?" then went right back to gossiping with her friend about what was going on at her job. This went on for 15-20 minutes until she finished her conversation and then all three left.

    It's bad enough that some parents think that television is a babysitter. It's even worse that some feel the Internet is a more interactive babysitter. Now, it seems, your cell phone and ipod are capable of acting as babysitters.

    Sadly, judging from my experience in the restaurant, technology might actually be a better babysitter than some parents...
  • Overkill (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ThosLives (686517) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:06AM (#20099899) Journal

    This technology is all overkill anyway, and here's why:

    To view content, you have to physically have access to a device that can display the content. As a parent, you should be able to remove that physical access for all 'locally controlled' devices; you can't prevent them from watching a friend's phone or whatever regardless of V-chips or whatever.

    There is this thing called an 'off switch' and, failing that, circuit breakers.

    You don't want them to have a phone, don't give them money to buy one. If they're old enough to get a job to afford their own, then they should already have the capacity to handle whatever content they can obtain anyway.

    To me, these laws just take away responsibility and, with it, freedom from the general populace.

    • First of all, how does this take away freedom from anybody? Do you understand what the V-chip is?

      There is this thing called an 'off switch' and, failing that, circuit breakers.

      Yeah, if you don't shut off the power to every room with a TV, you're an irresponsible parent. Good call.
  • by InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:07AM (#20099915)
    This is the same Mary Pryor who is cosponsoring the Protecting Children from Indecent Programming Act [slashdot.org].
    • Here's the correct link [slashdot.org] to the /. article discussing the Protecting Children from Indecent Programming Act. This group of senators is passing so many damn thinkofthechildren bills to ensure their reelections that it's hard to figure out which one we're talking about at any given time. Their constituents should be ashamed if they believe these bills are doing anything but wasting tax dollars and time that could be used to discuss important issues.
  • by sesshomaru (173381) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:11AM (#20099957) Journal
    At some point, it becomes really, really obvious that t his is what we actually call "government pork." Delicious, nutritious, government pork! The only question left is, who is being fed by this unfunded mandate?

    More concerning is the new anti-TV violence rules. I really don't want to go back to the days of the A-Team where you could have machine guns as long as they never hit anyone.

  • I propose.. (Score:2, Funny)

    by rsmoody (791160)
    A federal mandate that parents actually provide parenting for their children. This opposed to the government providing it for them. Radical, huh?
  • by insanemime (985459) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:14AM (#20099975)
    Ah yes...one step closer to a society that takes no responsibility for anything their children do. I guess you could argue that using a technology such as a super V chip helps parents automatically filter content that they are concerned their kids will see. Unfortunately, as a computer tech, I see so many parents ask tech shops about spying software and filtering software so they don't have to actively monitor what their kids are doing. If a parent is worried with who their kid is chatting with online then they need to be involved and ask. Parents have built in monitoring called "looking". I know its a low-tech foreign concept but it works. If you are open and honest with your kids, actively talk to them about dangers, keep them using search engines that filter bad content by default (like google) and watching what they are doing and who they are talking to on the internet then things like this are not needed. But that would take too much responsibility I guess.
  • wont somebody save the children! oh the humanity!

    every part of me screams that the real agenda is using a moralistic excuse to add another layer that can make somebody more money.
  • Lost Cause (Score:3, Informative)

    by Detritus (11846) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:15AM (#20100003) Homepage
    Television and films have distribution networks that can be easily regulated and controlled. That model doesn't fit the Internet, where anyone can generate and distribute content. What are they going to do when vast numbers of people, many of whom are not US residents, refuse to "go with the program" and put rating tags on their work? Are they going to demand that Project Gutenberg apply ratings to all of the books that they distribute? What about audible.com?

    Even if this becomes law, I can't imagine that it would survive its first challenge in a federal court.

  • Does this mean Cartman's power level will be OVER NINE THOUSAND!?
  • ...or are you going to legislate its use, too? And I, personally, don't know of anyone who actually uses the current V-chip. Most people I know tend to do this somewhat old-fashioned thing called "parenting."
  • I Want One (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Doc Ruby (173196) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:19AM (#20100047) Homepage Journal
    I never understood the opposition to the V-Chip. Why shouldn't the multimedia client (TV) come with a network screening app? In HW, so it's harder to crack, especially by literal "script kiddies".

    The alternative is that the government and providers screen content at the server, without consumer choice.

    The only problem is that today's FCC, coming at the tail end of the Republican covert government [dailykos.com], will probably install spyware on their "Super" V-Chip. So instead of all your TV signals of all they offer coming down your wire or over the air, for you to privately select from, their "Super" V-Chip will send a log to the NSA. Crossreferenced to all your personal data [wikipedia.org], including email, phone, surveillance video, and all the electronic/digital transactions that profile your life.

    Eventually the NSA will convince us to implant an RFID V-Chip "so we can easily tune our TVs wherever we go".

    But if we get a private V-Chip now, before they do it, then we can satisfy the demand for convenience before that convenience is exploited to mask total privacy invasion. If the V-Chip specs and HW/firmware/SW are open, then we can get both safety and convenience. That's known as "freedom": the (traditional) American Way.
    • by quanticle (843097)
      I'm not opposed to the V-Chip, per se. I am opposed to forcing it onto every consumer who buys a TV, as per current law.

      If the V-Chip specs and HW/firmware/SW are open

      This is coming from an administration that is more secretive than Nixon's. What are the odds that anything will be open?

      <sarcasm> Don't you realize that if we have any kind of open standard, kids will be able to view porn, and terrorists will be able to spread propaganda? Why do you hate freedom?</sarcasm>
      • by Doc Ruby (173196)
        If the actual V-Chip functions are OK (and not spyware), then why not require every TV to have one? Otherwise, most consumers will trade away "yet another incomprehensible tech feature I'll never use" for a few bucks saved. Which will drive up the cost of the chip for everyone else. While leaving room for competing UIs, which will totally (and probably finally) kill the effort.

        This is coming from an administration that is more secretive than Nixon's. What are the odds that anything will be open?

        That's why w

    • by Applekid (993327)
      It's not freedom if it's at the point of a gun, which all "government mandates" essentially boil down to.
    • by BobMcD (601576)

      But if we get a private V-Chip now, before they do it, then we can satisfy the demand for convenience before that convenience is exploited to mask total privacy invasion. If the V-Chip specs and HW/firmware/SW are open, then we can get both safety and convenience. That's known as "freedom": the (traditional) American Way.

      I agree completely. Something like this could be used to help filter all sorts of content and could be quite useful as an opt-in technology. There's a market for it and a genuine need. Now before you start in on the 'sucky parenting' crap, ask your self, 'do I churn my own butter'? Because not having to worry about content being passed to my sons while I'm busy posting on slashdot, at work, posting to slashdot while at work, etc, would be a 'Good Thing'. Very convenient and useful.

      To be practical abou

  • Oblig.: (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TripMaster Monkey (862126) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:20AM (#20100051)
    Have you ever considered turning off the TV...sitting down with your children...and hitting them?

    - Bender
  • I am also waiting for the Intellecual Property lawyers to figure out tht people can remember movies and songs. This is a clear copyright violation and so we should all be required to have our memories erased.
  • Damn Republicans throwing away our rights . . . oh . . wait.
  • by k_187 (61692)
    And then they can make the V-Chip X-TREME! when this fails.
  • Back in the 50s, the TV was for the most part clean. Kids could watch most of what was on TV with very little considered to be 'unacceptable for a child to watch'.

    Today it seems like kids are very limited in terms of what would be 'acceptable'. Now maybe I'm just crazy or too tired to think straight, but WHY are we watching/listening to this 'crap' on TV? If it's so bad for our kids, is it really that good for us adults? Sure, there's definite limits. Can't exactly show the evening news on Iraq on Nick
    • by Secrity (742221)
      In the '50's, "The Flintstones" and "I Love Lucy" episodes had animated cigarette commercials embedded into them -- and they were shown prime time. "I Love Lucy" even had Philip Morris cigarettes product placement. Of course Lucy and Ricky had to sleep in twin beds; the first TV show that indicated that a couple slept in the same bed was the "Brady Bunch".

      My kids are in their teens now, and I never really cared what they watched on TV. Trying to protect them is going to cause problems later when they are
  • But if a chip can filter content on the internet/cell phone/whatever based on some settings then it can be made to record that content and possibly where it came from and what (or who) filtered it.

    Just a thought.
  • How many people actually use a V-chip in existing TVs? Anyone.....anyone at all.....

    OK, there were about five people that use them.

    Why waste resources on a system that virtually no one uses. Actually, most people don't even know that it is there to start with.

    Parents need to take responsibility and teach their kids right from wrong, what is real and not real. An other people need to let all the other parents make their own mistakes, they can not fix their own kids by forcing others to do as they sh
  • Other than adding somewhat to the cost of the device(s), so what? Nobody's stopping adults from accessing whatever content they want to. Nobody's forcing you to use it. It's just an option that parents can use, if they wish, to _help_ control what their children have access to on equipment the parent provides.

    I know that it's not a fix-all but if parents are concerned about what their children are watching, this is just one more tool they can use (along with actually monitoring the children, of course).

    E
  • While everyone here is saying "Why should the government get into the business of parenting" and something to the effect of "This chip is going to be made of rainbows, lollipops and fail". Allow me to play devil's advocate for a second: Will somebody please think of the children! That's all i got.
  • Ironically, I'm probably not supposed to say this on slashdot, but

    Fuck That

    And any manner of other "inappropriate" words for that matter. The idea of allowing the government to filter for us what is appropriate is absolutely absurd and anyone who thinks that the law-making body is the one best suited toward deciding the standards of decency for a socity needs some serious education in sociology.

    When you hand the job of deciding what's appropriate over to an organization whose job is to define laws, so

  • by gillbates (106458) on Friday August 03, 2007 @08:33AM (#20100219) Homepage Journal

    You know, so I could screen out shows that would insult my intelligence?

    Just think of the possibilities:

    1. An A chip to screen out those artsy-fartsy types of human-interest documentaries and other drivel that joe-sixpack isn't interested in seeing.
    2. A B chip to screen out Budweiser{approved,sponsored} content for all of those artsy-fartsy types who think NASCAR is boring and mindless.
    3. A C chip to screen out cartoons for those of us who've outgrown them.
    4. A D chip to screen out Democrats and other politicians with whom I don't agree.
    5. A P chip to screen out unpatriotic content (Possible overlap with a D chip?).
    6. A BS chip to screen Fox news.
    7. ...

    Yeah, that's it! A chip for everyone! The world will finally be safe from itself ;-)

    Come to think of it, I could just turn off the tv or change the channel... Hmmm...

  • Without this protection many of us would see these vile and dangerous images which instantly turn sane men into immoral savage killing machines.
  • So, while the Bush Junta goes about spreading Death and Destruction upon various parts of the world [metacafe.com], and snooping into people's private lives [nsa.gov], and turning the justice department into a personal political Gestapo [washingtonpost.com], the Democrats gleefully jump on the opportunity to do even more damage to what's left of American Liberty and with the support of their Ministry of Truth down in Hollywood [mpaa.org], have come up with yet another clueless scheme to coddle, protect and diminish the American Experiment in Democracy.

    There's a

  • Once again, politicians prove they don't understand the internet.....

    The V-Chip has two components: the transmitter end, which sends the program rating embedded inside the television signal; and the receiver end, where the V-Chip decodes the rating, and enables/disables viewing of that signal.

    For an internet V-Chip rating system to work, every web site would need to embed a rating tag on every page... which they would have zero interest in doing. Even if Congress mandates it in the USA, foreign web site

  • ...religious content.

    hmm, yeah, that would actually be enough, I can stand all the rest of the stuff, opinions, smut, games, violence, etc. Just get rid of all those religious people and their shows and the crap that comes out of their mouths. THAT would be using technology to better mankind!

  • They said that the original V-Chip would put control of TV content in the hands of parents and take government out of the censorship business.

    THEY LIED.

    Censors always lie.

    If you think it'll be any different this time -- if you think that if you give them what they want, they'll go away happy -- then you're either hopelessly naive or just plain nuts.
  • Under the 1996 Telecommunications Act, TV makers are required to embed the V-chip within televisions to allow parents to block content according to a rating system.'"

    Wow, my oldest TV I bought in 2003. So both of my TVs have V-chips? This is news to me, and I tend to pride myself on being tech savoy. I wonder how many people know their TVs actually have this, or for that matter, how many people actually use it.

    DVD players usually have parental control, but I have never seen anyone use it, except for the default settings on the PS2. Most parents I know just keep the bad DVDs put up and away from the kids. If the kids are old enough to start snooping around and find it a

  • by ms1234 (211056)
    Someone is going to get a juicy contract and they don't even have to deliver anything.
  • ...with the US assuming that the world ends at its borders. Good luck getting offshore web site operators to conform to some sort of mandatory rating system.
  • A Good Idea, if ... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by PPH (736903) on Friday August 03, 2007 @12:11PM (#20103541)
    ... we can get the V-chip filtering technology extended to tag different theologies. I mean, I don't want my kids watching some of those broadcasters that are spreading the wrong word of God. I can trust their judgment when it comes to viewing violence or sexual content. But when it comes to preaching false creeds, how am I to know if they might be led astray by some blasphemer? I'd like a classification system that allows me to select not only the major theologies, but denominations of each.

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