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C.T.W. Unveils Show on Literacy for Pre-Adolescents

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ost $2.45 for two minutes and advised children to get permission. The ftc said such statements "did not provide a reasonable means for parents to exercise control."

The agreements specify that if the firms cannot develop other ways for parents to exert control over the placing of calls, they must arrange with local telephone companies to print the words "Child Call" alongside charges for the 900-numbers, and provide information on refunds.

The agreements, designed to protect children under age 13, will be final after a 60-day period for public comment.

An industry-reform group, the Children's Advertising Review Unit of the Council of Better Businessel10lBureaus Inc., recently reported that two out of three ads for 900-number services during children's television programming violate its guidelines. (See Education Week May 1, 1991.)

Also last week, the House Telecommunications and Finance Subcommittee of the Energy and Commerce Committee unanimously approved a measure that would require parental consent before children under age 18 could call any 900-services, including ones such as sports-data lines that are not aimed at young children.

The bill also would prevent telephone companies from cutting off services to those who refuse to pay 900-call charges and make the service providers tell callers the nature and cost of the service being provided and allow them to hang up before accruing charges.

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