In the same way that a watershed refers to the crest dividing two drainage basins, a broadcasting watershed generally serves as a dividing line in a schedule between family-oriented programs, and programs aimed at or suitable for a more adult audience, such as those containing objectionable content (including graphic violence, profane language, nudity, and sexual intercourse, or strong references to these themes without necessarily portraying them).
In some countries, watersheds are enforced by broadcasting laws. Due to cultural differences around the world, watershed times can vary; for instance, in Australia, the watershed time starts at 19:30 (7:30 p.m.), and in Italy it starts at 22:30 (10:30 p.m.). Some countries also have multiple watershed layers, where less inappropriate content than others may be allowed at an earlier time of the evening, but may still be restricted. In addition, some countries are more lenient towards subscription television and radio or pay-per-view channels than towards free-to-air channels.
In Argentina, any programmes broadcast between 06:00 or 07:00 and 22:00 or 22:30 must be suitable for all ages. There are also three other ratings, such as SAM 13, SAM 16 and SAM 18, and can only be broadcast during the broadcast time that was not covered by any programme suitable for family viewing.
Starting in September 2010, it is compulsory for broadcasters to show the notices "Comienza el horario apto para todo público" (English: Start time of suitable for all age schedule) and "Finaliza el horario apto para todo público" (English: End time of suitable for all age schedule) at 6:00 a.m. or 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. or 10:30 p.m. respectively. In addition, the notice "Atención: Contenido no apto para niños, niñas y adolescentes" (English: Warning: Content not suitable for children and adolescents) are shown before news broadcasts.
On Australian television, programmes are restricted to certain times based on their rating. As of December 2015, PG-rated programmes can be now shown at any time of day, M-rated programmes can be shown from 19:30, and MA15+ programmes from 20:30. As well as this, M-rated programmes can also be shown from 12:00 to 15:00 on school days.
Due to complications with Australian time zones, this can vary slightly in some areas. For example, when daylight saving time is in effect in New South Wales, NSW-based stations broadcasting to the Gold Coast, Queensland would effectively push the broadcast watersheds an hour earlier, as Queensland does not observe DST; however, complaints by Gold Coast residents have forced those stations to delay prime-time programming by one hour to compensate.
With the exception of subscription narrowcast channels, anything rated R18+ must not be shown on Australian television at any time, and must be edited to fit within MA15+ or AV15+ guidelines. Even on subscription narrowcast channels, the owner of the channel must ensure that its content is restricted to access by those with appropriate disabling devices.
There is no legally binding watershed period in Austria. However, according to its regulations, the public service broadcaster's channels do not air content which might harm the physical, mental or moral development of minors before 20:15; and when fictional programmes "not suitable for children" or "only for adults" are aired, an X or O, respectively, is added to the digital on-screen graphic.
The Code of Ethics of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters specifies that broadcasters may not air programming "which contains sexually explicit material or coarse or offensive language intended for adult audiences" outside of the "late viewing period", defined as programming beginning at 9:00 p.m. (programs that begin before this time must be considered pre-watershed even if they run into this hour), and ending 6:00 a.m. the next day. In regards to time zones, the watershed is based on the time zone from which the signal originates. There is no watershed for radio broadcasting: stations are forbidden from broadcasting content which glorifies violence, undue coarse language, or undue sexually explicit material.
In the Czech Republic, only programmes that "can be watched by children" can be aired until 22:00. After 22:00, adult-orientated programmes may be aired.
In Finland, all the major television companies (Yle, MTV Media, Nelonen Media, SBS Finland and Fox International) have agreed not to show 16-rated content before 21:00 and 18-rated content before 23:00. Television channels use their own discretion to decide the ratings. Before airing a programme, the channel must provide the related rating information to the governmental bureau Finnish Centre for Media Education and Audiovisual Media, which replaced the now-defunct Finnish Board of Film Classification in this capacity at the beginning of 2012.
In France, -12 rated programmes/films are not allowed before 22:00, and -16/-18 rated programmes/films are not allowed before 22:30 and 00:00 respectively. -18 rated programmes/films can only air via satellite and cable. The watershed for all ratings finishes at 06:00 the following morning except for -18 programmes that can't be issued after 05:00.
There is also one additional rating that is not used in films; -10. -10 rated programmes signifies content less intense than -12 rated programmes. All programmes and films must display the respective icon on-screen for the duration of the programme. Before December 2012, -10 rated programmes had to display the respective icon on-screen at the start and in regular intervals.
In Germany, the watershed is between 22:00 and 06:00 for content suitable for ages 16 and older, and between 23:00 and 06:00 for content suitable for adults (18 and older). This means that programmes marked "Keine Jugendfreigabe" (not approved for minors) by the ratings organization FSK may only be shown after 23:00. Blacklisted movies may not be aired at any time. For some content rated 12 and up, the watershed is between 20:00 and 06:00, but there is no general watershed for such content.
If a commercial broadcaster wants to air a programme not rated by the FSK, the programme’s watershed is rated by the FSF (Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle Fernsehen – Voluntary Self Regulation for TV) instead. A programme with neither an FSK nor FSF rating is not usually aired by commercial broadcasters, as the KJM (Kommission für Jugendmedienschutz – Commission for the Protection of Minors in the Media) may charge a fine if it finds the content inappropriate. To avoid the original watershed for a programme or to air a blacklisted movie, commercial broadcasters can ask the FSF to tell them how to cut the movie for another rating.
Greece uses a triple-tier watershed, along with a five-tier colour-coded decal scheme, displayed at the beginning and at regular intervals during all broadcasts except for news bulletins.
- A white rhombus in green or a white circle in blue indicates unrestricted programming (Suitable for everybody).
- A white circle in a blue circle indicates programming that parental consent is advised, and can be broadcast at any time (parental consent advised)
- A white triangle in orange indicates programming that could upset younger children, and is only allowed between 19:00 and 06:00 (Suitable, parental consent required).
- A white square in purple indicates programming that may be unsuitable for children, and is only allowed between 21:00 and 06:00 (Suitable for minors above the age of 15).
- A white X in red indicates programming which by law must not air until midnight (Suitable only for adults). Programmes with foul language and commercials with sexual oriented nudity will typically fall into this category. Content with this rating before midnight is punishable by fine, except when used in the context of a suitably labelled film, theatrical play or other media.
The colour-coded ratings are mandatorily displayed and verbally announced at the beginning of each broadcast. These provisions are enforced by the National Radio and Television Council (ESR), an independent authority, the executive members of which are appointed by the leaders of all parliamentary parties, preferably by unanimous consent and in extremis by an 80% supermajority.
Hungary uses a double-tier watershed.
- Programmes rated for over 16-year-olds are only allowed between 21:00 and 05:00 (CET), and
- programmes rated for over 18-year-olds are only allowed between 22:00 and 05:00 (CET).
(On the other hand, Hungarian television prime time ends about 23:30 CET.
For more information about the two ratings' meaning, see this article.
India currently does not have a watershed. The Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) is responsible for regulating television programming. The current law only permits material rated with a 'U' (Universal) certificate to be broadcast on television, but this law is regularly disobeyed. The government has, at times, ordered individual programmes and films to be broadcast between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. There have been several proposals in the past to introduce a watershed between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. daily, when programming rated 'A' (Adults Only) can be broadcast, but all proposals till date have been rejected by the government.
In Ireland, there is no statutory requirement for a watershed. The Code of Programme Standards of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) requires television and radio broadcasters to use at least one of three methods to advise viewers of content, namely: an explicit watershed for adult-oriented programmes; prior warnings before potentially offensive programming; and/or a descriptive classification system. A 2005 survey for the drafters of the Code found that 83% of viewers thought a watershed was a good idea; only 39% knew the pre-existing watershed was 21:00; 52% felt it should be 22:00 or 23:00. The 2007 Code specifies that broadcasters using a watershed must regularly promote it, and its start and end times, for viewers' awareness.
RTÉ Television implements a watershed of 21:00, as well as an onscreen classification system. Programmes with the MA ("mature audience") classification are only shown after the watershed. Programmes running through the watershed are treated as pre-watershed. RTÉ's guidelines state, "A cornerstone of our contract with television viewers is the watershed and the understanding that prior to 21.00 material broadcast should be suitable for a family audience. ... The immediately post 21.00 broadcast period should be regarded as a graduation period towards more adult material and due allowance must be made for the potential presence of children in the audience". More nuanced limits may also be applied; for example, RTÉ cleared a trailer for horror film Paranormal Activity for broadcast after 19:00, except during the Saturday evening film which many children watch. Virgin Media One operates what it calls "the internationally accepted watershed" of 21:00. Radio broadcasting does not apply a watershed.
In 2005, all television broadcasters operated a main watershed starting at 21:00. In the case of RTÉ, it ended at 06:30, while for Virgin Media One and TG4, which then had shorter broadcast hours, it ended at nighttime closedown. RTÉ Radio did not use a watershed. TG4 claimed it had "a number of different watersheds coming into effect throughout the day", while all stations had a second, less formal watershed at 22:00 for "material which is decidedly over 18". Quinn notes that the period from 18:00 to 21:00 attracts most viewer complaints, as "audience expectations of what should be shown often differ greatly".
The BAI's code regarding advertising and children states, "In general terms, programmes broadcast after 9 p.m. are not regarded as children‟s programmes. After this time, the primary responsibility for what a child is watching is seen to lie with the parents/guardians. The Code recognises, however, that children‟s viewing does not end abruptly at 9 p.m. and, therefore, the Code will offer some protection in the hour between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m."
According to Codice TV e minori (Code for Children and Television, 2002), all the channels must broadcast "general audience" programmes from 07:00 to 22:30. After 22:30, +14 programmes can be aired. +18 programmes are prohibited from television altogether, with the only exception of satellite and cable premium adult channels.
Department of Radio, Television and Film (Mexico) regulates television programming in Mexico. Any programmes shown on Mexican television must be classified A (suitable for all ages) for broadcast between 05:00 to 20:00. Broadcast for programmes classified as B, B-15, C and/or D can be broadcast at certain times only.
- Programmes rated B may only be broadcast from 16:00 to 05:59
- Programmes rated B-15 may only be broadcast from 19:00 to 05:59
- Programmes rated C may only be broadcast from 21:00 to 05:59
- Programmes rated D can only be broadcast from 00:00 to 05:00
- Programmes that are rated "All ages", "6" or "9" can be broadcast all day.
- Programmes that are rated "12" can be broadcast from 20.00 to 06.00
- Programmes that are rated "16" can be broadcast from 22.00 to 06.00
The number in the age rating indicates the lowest age for which it is suitable.
On free-to-air channels (but not those on satellite), programming rated Adults Only is only allowed between 20:30 and 05:00. Adults Only programming is also allowed to air between midday and 15:00 on school days. Sports programming and news bulletins are exempt from the system altogether, but do still carry warnings before certain stories containing graphic images.
Peru has adult time from 22:00 to 6:00 (next day). During the rest of the time, nevertheless, some +14 programming signs may be posted on the screen. As of 2015, there have been complaints that adult time is not enforced (either from the TV channels or the authorities) since some programs such as "Combate", "Esto es Guerra", "Amor Amor Amor" and "Al fondo hay sitio" have broadcast violence, or sexually suggestive material, during "unrestricted" time.
In Poland, the Czas chroniony ("Protected time") rules specify that programmes with a "12" rating or higher are not allowed to be aired during scheduling blocks intended for children, programmes with a "16" rating are not allowed to be aired before 20:00 on mainstream channels, and programmes with an "18" rating may not be aired before 23:00 on mainstream channels.
Open channel terrestrial television stations (RTP, SIC and TVI) can broadcast programmes and films rated 16 only between 22:30 and 06:00 with a permanent visual identification. There are no restrictions on pay television, although pornography may only be aired on encrypted channels.
The national broadcaster RTV Slovenija uses two watersheds: between 21:00 and 05:00 programmes rated 12+ and 15+ can be shown and between 00:00 and 05:00 18+ content can be shown. Children's programmes have to be screened until 19:00.
A warning has to be broadcast before airing a programme with an age restriction. The rating symbol is shown accompanied by a voice that says: "Opozorilo! Predvajane programske vsebine vključujejo prizore, ki so primerni samo za ..." (The following programmes include scenes appropriate only for ...) followed by "otroke v spremstvu in pod vodstvom staršev ali skrbnikov/otroke nad 12 letom starosti/mladoletne nad 15 letom starosti/odrasle" (children accompanied and under guidance of parents or guardians/children older than 12/teenagers older than 15/adults).
The ratings used are:
- VS (vodstvo staršev): Parental guidance is recommended for those under 12.
- 12+: Not allowed under the age of 12.
- 15+: Not allowed under the age of 15.
- 18+: Not allowed under the age of 18.
- VS: White rhombus with parent and child
- 12+: White rhombus with number 12
- 15+: White rhombus with number 15
- 18+: White rhombus with number 18
The respective rating symbol has to be shown for the duration of the programme.
South Africa takes a very hands-on approach when it comes to what children are allowed to see on television, and the parents or guardians of the child may be fined if they are caught not following the rules. The ratings used are:
- All: Suitable for all ages. The respective icon is required to be displayed on-screen for 30 seconds at the start of the programme.
- PG: Suitable for all ages, but very young children must be accompanied at all times. The respective icon is required to be displayed on-screen for one minute at the start of the programme.
- 13: Prohibited to children under the age of 13. The respective icon is required to be displayed on-screen for two minutes at the start of the programme and after every commercial break.
- 16: Prohibited to children under the age of 16. Programmes with this rating are not allowed before 21:00. The respective icon is required to be displayed on-screen for five minutes at the start of the programme and after every commercial break.
- 18: Prohibited to children and young people under the age of 18. Programmes with this rating are not allowed before 23:00. The respective icon is required to be displayed on-screen for the duration of the programme. The content in programmes that have an "18" rating is not restricted, as long as it does not have pornography which is prohibited altogether.
In Spain, the watershed is simpler than a lot of other countries as there is only one watershed time, but there is a quadruple-tier age rating system that is used alongside it. The ratings used in Spain are "All", "7", "12", "16" and "18". However, only 18-rated programmes are restricted. 18-rated programmes are only allowed between 22:00 and 06:00, and are required to broadcast a warning sound before it is shown.
In 2015, the Serbian broadcasting regulator, the REM (Regulatory body for Electronic Media) introduced a two-tier watershed. The watershed is based on the new TV rating system.
Programmes marked "16" are only allowed to be shown between 10pm and 6am and may contain coarse language and mild references to gambling, drugs and sex.
Programmes marked "18" are only allowed to be shown between 12am and 6am and may contain extensive scenes of drugs and sex.
Switzerland has no watershed. However, broadcasters are required by law to avoid any confrontation of minors with unsuitable programming through the choice of transmission time.
According to Ofcom, the watershed on free-to-air television in the UK is between 21:00 (09:00 p.m.) and 05:30 (05:30 a.m.), while premium or pay-per-view services are allowed to start the watershed at 20:00 (8:00 p.m.). Until 1 October 2011, the watershed ended at 05:30 for premium channels as it still does for the free-to-air channels. On 1 October 2011, the watershed rules for the premium channels were relaxed, now ending at 06:00. Programmes that are rated 15 cannot be shown outside this period. However, some 12-rated shows can be shown before 21:00, such as The Simpsons, Malcolm in the Middle, Doctor Who, Atlantis, Only Fools and Horses and Futurama. There is no watershed on PIN protected channels (such as Sky Cinema). On this type of channel, trying to view adult material before 20:00 will require a PIN.
There should be a gentle transition to adult material, and 18-rated content must not air until 22:00 (10:00pm) on most channels that are without PIN protection. However, channels that are dedicated to airing adult content such as Horror Channel may be allowed to start 18-rated content at 21:00 without PIN protection.
Advertisements also have to comply with the same set of rules, and can be restricted when shown outside the watershed (such as those for junk food, bingo, alcohol and condoms). Advertisements that may have an adult-related context, such as bingo, are less likely to be allowed on children's-oriented channels. Some advertisements, often those for 18-rated films and video games, are not allowed before the watershed at all.
Although ratings do not have to be displayed on-screen, the channel is legally required to broadcast a verbal advisory before shows that may be unsuitable for children. Failure to do this may result in the broadcaster being given a fine.
See also: The Ofcom Broadcasting Code – Section 1
Beginning in the 1975-76 television season, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) attempted to enforce a "Family Viewing Hour" policy, in which the Big Three television networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) agreed to air programming suitable for family viewing during the first hour of primetime. In 1976, the rule was overturned as unconstitutional following a lawsuit by the Writers Guild of America.
In 1978, the Supreme Court case FCC v. Pacifica Foundation (which dealt with a complaint surrounding the broadcast of the George Carlin routine "Filthy Words" by WBAI radio) upheld the ability for the FCC to regulate the broadcast of "indecent" material on free-to-air radio and television, citing the "uniquely pervasive presence" of broadcasting in society, and the likelihood that children could be exposed to such content by chance. From then on, the FCC enforced a safe harbor on the broadcast of indecent material between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. the following morning.
In 1987, the FCC introduced a stricter definition of indecency, defined as "language or material that, in context, depicts or describes, in terms patently offensive as measured by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium, sexual or excretory activities or organs". The FCC also removed the previous 10:00 p.m. watershed, and stated that this prohibition would apply during any timeframe where there "is a reasonable risk that children may be in the audience". In 1988, as directed by the United States Congress, the FCC announced that it would ban the broadcast of indecent material entirely, with no safe harbor. In 1991, the FCC's proposed 24-hour ban was struck down by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals as unconstitutional. The Telecommunications Act of 1992 re-established a safe harbor period for indecent content between midnight and 6:00 a.m. the following morning. The period was lengthened back to 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. following further D.C. Circuit rulings.
Some American television scenes famous for "pushing the envelope" (such as limited nudity on NYPD Blue) were aired in the 10:00 to 11:00 p.m. hour; however, these broadcasts were before the safe harbor in the Central and Mountain time zones, where programming scheduled for 10:00 p.m. Eastern would typically be broadcast starting at 9:00 p.m. (using a one-hour delay in Mountain Time broadcast areas). Because each U.S. time zone enters safe harbor separately (at 10:00 p.m. local time), it is possible for not all network affiliates that air an "indecent" program at the same moment to face the same penalties. Such was the case with CBS, whose affiliates faced a proposed fine of US$3.63 million for a repeat of the episode "Our Sons and Daughters" of Without a Trace in December 2004. The program was flagged for depicting an orgy involving teenagers. It was televised at 10:00 p.m. in the Eastern and Pacific time zones (within the safe harbor), but at 9:00 p.m. in Central and Mountain times (outside the safe harbor). The FCC split its fine among the 111 CBS affiliates covering these time zones. After a court settlement, the network agreed to pay US$300,000 in fines.
Even though the watershed period begins during the prime time hour of 10:00 p.m., broadcast networks have since avoided indecent content as to not offend their affiliates and advertisers, and due to the constant fluctuation of indecency standards to account for changes in acceptance and FCC enforcement. In 2011 and 2012, courts overturned fines regarding a brief scene of male nudity in a 2003 NYPD Blue episode, as well as fines over fleeting expletives in a live awards show broadcast in 2002 by Fox, ruling that the FCC's basis for these fines was too vague.
The FCC's jurisdiction in regards to content only applies to terrestrial television. Cable channels may be more lenient in their content depending on their target audience and the standards of their advertisers, while premium channels such as HBO are the most, because they are funded primarily by their subscribers and not commercial advertising.
In Venezuela, the watershed begins at 23:00 and ends at 05:00 in the following morning and is called "Adult time" according to Article 7 of the Law on Social Responsibility on Radio, Television and Electronic Media. During this block, adult-oriented programs may be transmitted as long as they do not contain hardcore pornography, political or religious intolerance, racism or xenophobia.
This is a list of watershed times in each country, starting with the earliest and ending with the latest. This only includes the last phase of the watershed to start (for example, in Australia, MA15+ and AV15+ shows are not allowed until 20:30. The one for AV15+ shows would be the only one included in the table). Similarly, this table only includes the first phase of the watershed to end. Some countries may share the same last phase watershed time, in which case the conflicting boxes will be sorted by the end time.
A green box in either the start or end time means it has multiple phases of the respective event.
The main part of the watershed is not in place.
The main part of the watershed is in place.
- Adult material can also air between midday and 15:00 on school days.
- Watershed rules vary depending on, but are not limited to, whether it is free-to-air or not.
- Watershed rules depend on whether it is free-to-air or not.
- Subscription Narrowcast Television Codes of Practice 2007 (PDF) (Report). Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association. 2007. p. 3. Retrieved 31 January 2010.[permanent dead link]
- "Jugendschutz im ORF" (PDF) (in German). ORF Publikumsrat. 6 July 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 17 December 2014.
- "Canadian Association of Broadcasters' Code of Ethics (2002)". Canadian Broadcast Standards Council. Retrieved 2019-02-25.
- Luukka, Teemu. "Tuntemattoman sotilaan saa esittää jälleen ennen kello 17". Helsingin Sanomat. Retrieved 22 May 2014.
- "Televisioyhtiöiden käytännesäännöt" Archived 2014-03-09 at the Wayback Machine, Finnish Centre for Media Education and Audiovisual Media, 2007. Retrieved on 2012-09-07. (in Finnish)
- "Quel signal pour quel contenu ?". Archived from the original on 2015-03-16. Retrieved 2018-12-29.
- "'Watershed' timings for adult films on TV soon". The Times of India. 2006-01-21. Retrieved 2012-12-05.
- "Watershed hour beckons Indian television". The Telegraph – Calcutta, India. 2010-11-22. Archived from the original on 2014-03-09. Retrieved 2012-12-05.
- "Govt says a firm 'no' to adult content on TV". The Financial Express. 2011-02-21. Retrieved 2012-12-05.
- "Consultation Document – Phase 1" (PDF). BCI Code of Programme Standards. Broadcasting Commission of Ireland. 2005. p. 14. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-03-08. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
It is worth noting that in Ireland the watershed operates as an informal arrangement and is not contained in any codes, rules or law.
- Broadcasting Commission of Ireland 2007, p.7
- Lansdowne Market Research (October 2005). "Towards development of a Code on Taste and Decency" (PDF). Broadcasting Commission of Ireland. pp. 43–44. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-03-08. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
- Broadcasting Commission of Ireland 2007, p.8
- "RTÉ Programme Standards and Guidelines" (PDF). RTÉ. 26 June 2008. p. 51. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
- "On Screen Classification". RTÉ.ie. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
- "The Watershed". General RTÉ Guidelines. RTÉ. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
- Broadcasting Authority of Ireland July 2012, pp. 85–87
- Broadcasting Authority of Ireland July 2012, pp. 19–20
- Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (May 2011). "Complaint Decisions" (PDF). p. 82. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
With regard to a watershed, such practice is only applicable to television broadcasting.
- Quinn 2005, p.19
- Quinn 2005, p.21
- Quinn 2005, p.114
- Quinn 2005, p.117
- Quinn 2005, p.129
- "Children's Commercial Communications Code" (PDF). Broadcasting Authority of Ireland. May 2011. p. 8. Retrieved 27 October 2012.
- "Ministero delle Comunicazioni – Tutela dei minori". comunicazioni.it. Archived from the original on 18 February 2009. Retrieved 17 April 2018.
- "Radio y Televisión". .: Dirección General de Radio, Televisión y Cinematografía :. Retrieved 2019-03-18.
- "Etična merila :: Prvi interaktivni multimedijski portal, MMC RTV Slovenija". www.rtvslo.si.
- "Pravilnik o določitvi vizualnega in akustičnega opozorila za programske vsebine, ki niso primerne za otroke in mladoletnike". pisrs.
- P, Bundeskanzlei -. "CC 784.40 Federal Act of 24 March 2006 on Radio and Television (RTVA)". www.admin.ch.
- Ofcom – Watershed Ofcom
- The Ofcom Broadcasting Code – Section 1 Archived 2007-12-11 at the Wayback Machine Ofcom
- "How a Shower Scene Changed Television History". TheWrap. 2015-09-23. Retrieved 2017-07-16.
- Lowry, Brian (1999-09-01). "Parents Council Says TV's 'Family Hour' Now Raunchier". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2017-07-16.
- Levi, Lili. "The FCC's Regulation of Indecency" (PDF). Retrieved October 1, 2018.
- Molotsky, Irvin. "F.C.C. Rules on Indecent Programming". The New York Times. Retrieved 2018-10-01.
- "FCC BANS ALL 'INDECENT' BROADCASTS". Washington Post. 1990-07-13. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2018-10-01.
- Andrews, Edmund L. "F.C.C.'s 'Indecency' Ban Is Upset by Appeals Court". The New York Times. Retrieved 2018-10-01.
- "ABC Faces Indecency Fine for 2003 'NYPD Blue' Episode" Washington Post
- Eggerton, John (2007-07-05). FCC Gives CBS More Time To Respond to Without a Trace Question. Retrieved from http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/CA6457447.html (redirects to http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/109471-FCC_Gives_CBS_More_Time_To_Respond_to_Without_a_Trace_Question.php).
- Friedlander, Whitney (2017-08-16). "FCC Censorship Rules Vary for Broadcast, Cable, and Streaming". Variety. Retrieved 2018-10-01.
- "Looking at the FCC's Indecency Rules – Does Anyone Know What's Prohibited and What's Permitted?". Broadcast Law Blog. 2016-04-08. Retrieved 2018-10-01.
- "Is there anything you can't say on TV anymore? It's complicated". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-10-01.
- Liptak, Adam. "Supreme Court Rejects F.C.C. Fines for Indecency". The New York Times. Retrieved 2018-10-02.
- "Supreme Court cops out, again, on "fleeting expletives"". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2018-10-02.
- Andreeva, Nellie (2011-01-04). "'NYPD Blue' Indecency Fine Thrown Out". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-10-04.
- "Proyecto de Ley de Responsabilidad en Radio, Televisión y Medios Electrónicos". Scribd.
- Quinn, Ruth-Blandina (January 2005). "The watershed". Taste and Decency: a review of national and international practice. Broadcasting Commission of Ireland. Archived from the original (MS Word) on 7 June 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
- Broadcasting Commission of Ireland (10 April 2007). "BCI Code of Programme Standards: Guidance Notes" (PDF). Retrieved 25 October 2012.[permanent dead link]
- Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (July 2012). "Broadcasting Complaint Decisions" (PDF). Retrieved 27 October 2012.