Leaving a child alone in front of the television can be an uncomfortable feeling. There are many violent and sexual images being shown these days that would have a deep impact on any young, impressionable mind. However, while there are several of these adult-themed shows on TV there are just as many educational, children-appropriate shows. Parents are searching for a way to let their children watch television alone with exposure to these positive programs, but not the negative ones. Satellite TV providers, such as DirecTV, have found a way to give parents this worry-free peace of mind they seek. Parental Controls is a feature that is available to every single DirecTV customer at no extra charge, and children are exposed to a much safer television environment because of it.
How Parental Controls Works
Parental Controls is a very easy-to-use feature within the DirecTV Menu that gives on-screen directions to guide you through every step of the way. The main goal of it is to prevent kids from being able to watch adult programs and any other type of programming themes parents deem inappropriate for them. One important thing to know is that even though programs are blocked from children it does not mean they are blocked from everyone. The Parental Controls system operates around a PIN (Personal Identification Number) that is chosen and known only to the parents or family members they share it with. This PIN is very similar to your Bank ATM Card PIN number in that you choose the exact numbers and can change them at any time. This PIN is chosen when you go through the Parental Controls set-up to establish which type of programs you do not want to be available to everyone in your family. Whenever that type of programming comes on while someone is watching television, the Direct TV system knows to ask for the PIN number before showing even one second of it. If you know the PIN, as a parent would, then all you need to do is punch in those numbers on your remote control and the program is instantly available. If you do not know the PIN, as a child would not, then the program remains blacked out and unwatchable.
How A Child Is Protected
There are different ways Direct TVâ€™s Parental Controls feature can prevent kids from watching inappropriate shows and movies. One way is to establish what programs are inappropriate by the content rating they are given. Television shows are now required by law to have a content rating in the same way that movies are given a rating so people have an idea what to expect before watching. At the beginning of every TV show, you can see this rating, such as TVPG or TVMA, in the top corner of the screen. You can also choose to block out entire channels. This is great option for parents who may not want their kids exposed to the themes and messages that certain channels have such as comedy or religious channels. Besides limiting the programs or channels your child can watch, this Direct TV feature also lets you set a limit on the amount of time they can watch. After the amount of time you programmed in has expired then a screen pops up asking for the PIN to continue.
Saving Money and Peace of Mind
One more great feature Parental Controls has is the ability to set a spending limit on how much can be purchased in the Pay-Per-View selections. It can be as low or as high as you desire, and once that limit is met then the PIN is required to continue. This is a helpful way that Direct TV keeps their customers from being surprised by a large monthly bill arriving due to unknown purchases.