The announcement by broadcast television networks that they would extend program ratings to online streaming venues earned plaudits from one of the veterans of the inside-the-Beltway scene, along with one of the newest players.
Ed Markey (D-MA), ever the media watchdog whatever his current committee assignments happen to be, weighed in on the announcement. He said, ““In the wireless world, consumers no longer need to be tethered to their television to enjoy the latest programming. Mobility has dramatically expanded the range of venues for watching TV, but it has not changed the values that led to creation of the ratings system: parents still want tools to keep adult material away from their children. The extension of the use of parental guidelines to web-based content reflects this reality, and I commend the networks for offering parents the tools to exercise viewing choices.”
Also weighing in was freshly-installed FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel. “We are fast moving to a world where our children’s video viewing is not limited to the television screen—but is on any screen, at any time,” she said. “The way we watch is clearly changing. But what is not changing is the need to provide parents with simple and honest means to monitor and manage their children’s viewing. Today’s announcement is a first step in the right direction. I applaud ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, TeleFutura, Telemundo, and Univision for making this commitment.”
RBR-TVBR observation: There’s nothing wrong with scoring points inside the Beltway. Everybody in a regulated business has need for political capital from time to time – and any political capital broadcasters can put into the piggy bank is a good thing.