Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
In September 2000, the Commission issued a report requested by the President and Congress entitled,
The Commission issued follow-up reports to assess changes in industry practices in April 2001,
The 2009 Report also observed that consumers, including children under 17, were increasingly renting or buying movies to view on mobile devices such as Apple's iPod touch and iPhone.
In December 2010, the Android Market (now known as Google Play) began requiring developers to rate the content of their mobile apps.
A recent Commission staff report observed that the market for apps playable on app-capable smartphones, tablet computers, and other Internet-accessible handheld devices (
Although children (like consumers generally) increasingly are purchasing or playing movies, music, and games on app-capable mobile devices, no commercially available data quantify children's consumption of mobile content that is rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for them; assess whether and to what extent the various content rating systems impact their ability to purchase or play such content; or measure the content restrictions imposed by parents, including through technology-based parental control mechanisms. Accordingly, the Commission proposes to conduct (with parental permission) a survey of children ages 8-16 years who use the most common app-capable mobile devices—those that run the iOS or Android platforms.
Under the PRA and implementing OMB regulations, federal agencies must obtain approval from OMB for each “collection of information” they conduct or sponsor if posed to ten or more entities within any twelve-month period. 44 U.S.C. 3502(3); 5 CFR 1320.3(c). “Collection of information” means agency requests or requirements that members of the public submit reports, keep records, or provide information to a third party. 44 U.S.C. 3501(3); 5 CFR 1320.3(c).
The staff anticipates conducting an online survey of 900 respondents drawn from a nationally representative pool. Thus, before the Commission can conduct the study, it must obtain OMB clearance. See 44 U.S.C. 3507(a), 3502(3).
The FTC invites comments on: (1) Whether the proposed collections of information are necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the FTC, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the FTC's estimate of the burden of the proposed collections of information; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of collecting information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology,
Please also note that because your comment will be made public, you are solely responsible for ensuring that it does not include any sensitive personal information, such as any individual's Social Security number, date of birth, driver's license number or other state identification number or foreign country equivalent, passport number, financial account number, or credit or debit card number. It is also your own responsibility to ensure that your comment does not include any sensitive health information, such as medical records or other individually identifiable health information. Your comment also should not include any “[t]rade secret or any commercial or financial information * * * which is privileged or confidential.”
Because paper mail addressed to the FTC is subject to delay due to heightened security screening, please consider submitting your comment in electronic form. To ensure that the Commission considers an electronic comment, you must file it on the web-based form at the web link:
A comment filed in paper form should include the “Entertainment Industry Study: FTC File No. P994511” reference both in the text and on the envelope, and should be mailed or delivered to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, Room H-113 (Annex J), 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20580. The FTC is requesting that any comment filed in paper form be sent by courier or overnight service, if possible, because U.S. postal mail in the Washington area and at the Commission is subject to delay due to heightened security precautions.
The FTC Act and other laws the Commission administers permit the collection of public comments to consider and use in this proceeding as appropriate. The Commission will consider all timely and responsive public comments that it receives, whether filed in paper or electronic form. Comments received will be available to the public on the FTC Web site, to the extent practicable, at
With the assistance of a consumer research firm (hereafter “the Contractor”), the FTC will develop a draft questionnaire for use in an online
The study questionnaire will relate to the movies, music, and game apps that 8-16 year old children play on those devices, as well as the rating or labeling systems applicable to each of those media. The questionnaire will consist of a mixture of open-ended and closed-ended questions, and it is estimated to take 10 minutes to complete. The questions will focus on:
• Awareness of movies, music, and game apps rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age;
• Awareness of parental controls on their devices that could prevent access to content rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age;
• Consumption of movies, music, and games apps rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age;
• Usage of rating or labeling systems when acquiring movie, music, or game app content;
• Ability to bypass or modify parental controls for movies, music, or game app content;
• Estimation of percentage of content on their personal device that is rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age;
• Estimation of percentage of time spent on content rated that is or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age, relative to all other content;
• Estimation of dollars spent on content that is rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age, relative to all other content; and
• Restrictions, if any, that parents impose on their children's purchase or use of content that is rated or labeled as potentially inappropriate for the user's age
The results of the survey will be published in the FTC's next public report on the marketing of entertainment violence to children.
The Contractor conducting the consumer research will recruit a stratified sample of 900 children ages 8 to 16 (with parental permission) who watch movies, listen to music, and/or play game apps on mobile devices (
The cost per respondent should be negligible. Participation is voluntary, and will not require any labor expenditures by respondents. There are no capital, start-up, operation, maintenance, or other similar costs to the respondents.
By direction of the Commission.