Electronically Control What Your Child Watches: The Scoop on the V-Chip and TV Parental Controls

Did you know that you can control what your children watch, even when you aren’t in the room? Televisions are equipped with built-in control modules, called V-Chips, that are very easy to navigate and give parents the power to select what their children can watch.

The V-Chip is a television receiver which can block certain programs based on their rating categories. All U.S. televisions created after 1999 are required to have this technology.

“It’s easy to use. It’s easy to activate,” said Heather Feinstein, executive secretary of the TV Parental Guidelines monitoring board, www.tvguidelines.org.

Television controls are automatically installed in televisions and satellite/cable boxes.

By simply using the remote that came with your TV, or the remote that comes with your DVR or cable/satellite box, you can change the settings on your television to limit which types of programs your child can watch. And, it’s all password protected, so you have the luxury of adapting it as frequently as you need to, without penalty.

“Turning off the TV doesn’t do anything, unplugging it doesn’t do anything to change the settings,” said Heather. The parental controls stay put until you change them again.

To get started on using your unit’s parental controls simply click on the Menu button, then the Parental Control button and review all the options you have available. You can limit TV shows, movies, channels and variously rated shows. You can even limit the time of day and the days of the week that your child can watch TV.

This makes a great aid for when a babysitter may be inclined to watch something that is not on your list of approved shows – or ensuring that a child on punishment doesn’t get to watch TV.

“Blocking tools allows parents to decide what is appropriate for their child to watch,” said Heather. So become empowered and launch those TV viewing controls today.

Learn more about parenting in a digital world and internet parental controls.

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