Thursday, June 22, 2006

TiVo KidZone

On June 20, Chuck Colson weighed in on the new TiVo release--KidZone.

Excerpts from "Giving Parents a Break: TiVo Helps Out":

Many of you are probably familiar with TiVo, the television recording system. TiVo has now unveiled a new product called KidZone, designed specifically to help parents find and record family-friendly programming and to block kids from finding not-so-friendly programming.

The way KidZone works is simple, which I think makes it especially appealing to busy parents who, if you're like me, don't have time to decipher pages of instructions. What you do is pre-approve the shows you want your kids to watch. The TiVo itself gives recommendations for family-friendly shows. Also, three other respected
organizations with which TiVo has partnered—the Parents' Choice Foundation,
Common Sense Media, and the Parents Television Council—provide their own lists
of recommendations.

If you want, you can use the TV ratings system by setting the program to record only shows with certain ratings, or you can find out which shows the FCC has designated "Educational and Informational" and set it to record those. And you can make certain exceptions to these pre-approved lists, if there are any shows among them that you would rather not record.

However you make your choices, the program will automatically record them. And when you put your TiVo in "safe mode," protected by a password, then only those shows that you pre-approved for your kids will appear.

As TiVo explains in a press release, and I concur, this program is a big improvement on the V-Chip...

Parents need all the help they can get. Thank goodness it's finally out there.


At 6/22/2006 3:18 PM, Anonymous Andy said...


My personal perspective is that kids shouldn't be allowed to watch enough TV to warrant using a system like this. I was allowed something like an hour of TV a week as a little kid, and that was bumped up to a half hour a day later on. I'm so glad my parents did this. I learned all sorts of skills that other kids never did, and have become a well-rounded individual partly on account of this restriction. I enjoy computer programming, classical music, and playing sports... Imagine that! :)

At 6/22/2006 4:49 PM, Blogger Anna Venger said...

And singing too, I see!

We just got cable a few months ago which has launched me into the blogosphere. Is that a good thing? I dunno. Before that we had rabbit ears. We were so busy I figured we didn't need it anyway as long as we had access to a couple stations so we wouldn't be uninformed if anything serious happened.

At 6/22/2006 8:13 PM, Blogger Christopher Taylor said...

When I grew up we could only watch TV either when we were disobedient and snuck in some shows when our parents were away, or when we were given specific times for specific shows. TV wasn't a "turn on the box and wait to be entertained" medium, it was like a magazine or book. We watched shows, specific things, then turned it off. Since there was little worth watching, we read and played in the yard and rode bicycles and explored the woods nearby and visited friends, etc.


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