Reed Hundt

Speaking at a Club luncheon on July 27, 1995, Reed Hundt, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, called for new government rules to improve the quality of children's television and reduce the amount of sex and violence on TV. "Eighty percent of Americans think TV is harmful to society, and especially to children," Hundt said. "Children themselves report that television encourages them to take part in sexual activity too soon, to show disrespect for their parents, to lie and engage in aggressive behavior." Reed said that the FCC had made a "colossal mistake" in not requiring broadcasters to make a commitment to serve the public interest before granting them broadcast licenses. "Market values are not the same as family values," he said. The FCC has a chance to correct this mistake by granting licenses to broadcasters for a new spectrum so that they can broadcast a digital signal, Hundt said. "As we enter the digital age of television, we must not waste...TV's potential." Reed called for "limited but clear and enforceable public interest requirements." He also favored the so-called "V-chip" to help parents select from the avalanche of broadcast programs pouring uninvited into their homes. "The FCC, broadcasters and the American people need to recognize that TV can be more than it has been," Hundt said. National Press Club Record, Volume XLV, No. 29. August 10, 1995.

The National Press Club Luncheons are brought to you by the Internet Multicasting Service and our sponsors under an agreement with the National Press Club Board of Governors.