This report examines the issue of protection of minors in the EU28 and looks specifically at the implementation approaches of the AVMS Directive with regard to the following aspects concerning the protection of minors in audiovisual media services:
- Classification systems;
- Definitions of harmful content;
- Tools and systems used by broadcasters and platform operators to support the protection of minors; and
- Studies carried out in the field in the member states.
Chapter 1 provides an overview of the classification systems in the member states. This includes age rating systems that aim to categorise content, including a distinction between linear and non-linear classification systems, an overview of age-groups used in different countries for classification, and the watershed systems that apply in each country.
Chapter 2 focuses on definitions of harmful content that are used in the EU28, specifically the four concepts referred to in articles 12 and 27 of the AVMS Directive i.e. "might seriously impair", “likely to impair", "pornography" and "gratuitous violence".
Chapter 3 looks at the tools that are employed by broadcasters and platform operators for the protection of minors. The chapter introduces the legal and regulatory framework with a cross country analysis. Then the different delivery systems of content over various platforms are outlined and the various systems (ratings systems, labelling, PIN codes etc.) used by the operators are described.
Chapter 4 is the result of a survey among national regulators regarding studies carried out in the area of protection of minors. It provides a bibliography of studies with links to the reports.
Chapter 5 provides three annexes: the first gives a detailed overview of the classification systems in each country; the second annex contains country factsheets in the form of tables that summarise the findings from all four chapters; and the third includes the questionnaires and the lists of platform operators contacted via the questionnaires.