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TV Content Ratings Board Reconnects Phone

Viewers can once again dial up the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board if they have an issue with how a TV show is rated for content.

That is according to NCTA-The Internet & Television Association, the National Association of Broadcasters, and the Motion Picture Association of America (they jointly oversee the content ratings system) in a note to the FCC this week. The board includes representatives from cable and broadcast networks, studios, syndicators, and "third-party groups with an interest in children and media"

The phone line to the board had been disconnected in 2017 "due to lack of use," according to the associations, who pointed out that folks could still mail and e-mail the board. The groups had told the FCC in comments on the ratings system that the board had received no more than 47 complaints, on average, per year, and only 26 complaints in 2018 about 20 shows.

But, they said, "[i]n light of the feedback provided in this proceeding," the associations told the FCC, "the Monitoring Board has re-established a telephone line (202-570-7776) so that viewers can again contact it by phone, mail, and e-mail with questions or complaints about TV ratings."

Related: PTC Asks FCC to Overhaul Content Ratings

The FCC in February sought comment on the TV ratings system, as Congress told it it had to doin the omnibus appropriations legislation that was enacted Feb. 15 to avert a second government shutdown.

The FCC review included collecting comment on the ability of the governing body for TV ratings, the TV Parental Guidelines Oversight Monitoring Board, to oversee the ratings system and address public concerns."

The associations said they are committed to reviewing the record in the proceeding and responding to the feedback in whatever way is appropriate.

The FCC's report to Congress on the state of the ratings system is due back to Congress early next week.