Supreme Court May Re-examine What Is "Indecent"
March 3, 2008

This week, after more than 30 years, the Supreme Court may reopen the debate over what constitutes an "indecent" broadcast. The issue before the court is the usually accidental, so-called "fleeting expletive" that sneaks into an over-the-air broadcast, such as Bono's "This is really, really f---ing brilliant" comment at the 2003 Golden Globes, which was broadcast on NBC.

After receiving complaints from viewers, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) moved to crack down on broadcasters who air "isolated or fleeting expletives" during daytime and early evening hours. Last year, Fox and other television networks sued to block the new policy, and an appeals court in New York put it on hold.
Now, the FCC is asking the Supreme court to clear the way for the crackdown to be enforced. The justices may act on the agency's appeal as soon as today, and if they vote to hear FCC vs. Fox TV, arguments will be heard in the fall, reports the Los Angeles Times.

The appellate judges in New York felt that the FCC's new policy was arbitrary and vague, as it does not specify that all expletives will trigger fines regardless of the circumstances. At the same time, the appellate judges hinted that a true ban on all broadcast expletives would violate the 1st Amendment's free-speech guarantee. 
At the same time, broadcasters have said they have no desire to air expletives, but they're just trying to make sure that when an unscripted expletive is used - most often by a celebrity who is not a network employee - it does not result in a large fine. To help monitor the situation, broadcasters have instituted five-second delays on awards shows and some other live programming, but an occasional expletive can still slip through.

"It's like the Maytag repairman," said Rick Cotton, general counsel for NBC Universal, according to the LA Times. "You're expecting that after sitting in front of a console for literally thousands of hours that at a particular moment, on a completely unexpected basis, a person will hear it and will react in time."




 
Breaking News
Delilah To Be Inducted Into NAB Broadcasting Hall Of Fame
Interscope Records Continues to Roll in 2016
Liz Morentin Named Executive VP/Comms and Media At Warner Bros Records
December 2, 2016
CBS Radio Elevates Tracy Brandys To SVP/Market Manager & Director/Sales, Baltimore
WKST/Pittsburgh's Stuff A Bus Fills 57 Buses With Toys For Toys For Tots
Dan Dalton and Roc Nation Form Management Partnership
December 1, 2016
iHeartMedia Launches On-Demand Streaming Services
105.1 The Bounce/Detroit Announces On-Air Lineup
November 30, 2016
Alpha Media Names Ronnie Stanton VP/Programming
WNFZ/Knoxville Helping Fire Victims
November 29, 2016
Warner Music Group Names Ole Obermann Chief Digital Officer & EVP/Business Development
iHeartMedia Names Bob Neumann SVP/Programming For Savannah/Hilton Head
Nina L. Diaz Elevated To Head Of Unscripted For MTV & VH1
Broadcasters Foundation Of America To Honor Cox Media Group’s Bill Hoffman
November 28, 2016
Tony Martell, Founder of TJ Martell Foundation Passes Away at Age 90
Dayton Kane Appointed PD Of WOGB & WKRU/Green Bay
SportsRadio 94WIP, Phillies Extend Broadcast Rights Agreement
November 23, 2016
Pierre Robert Celebrates 35 Years at WMMR/Philadelphia
iHeartMedia Launches "Rewind 92.1" in Madison, WI
Kara Leigh to join The Tad & Melissa Show On Atlanta's B98.5
KDND-FM Morning Show To Collect Toys for Sierra Forever Families
November 22, 2016
iHeartMedia Names Derrick "DC" Cole SVP/Programming For Wilmington, DE
James Corden Named Host Of 59th Annual Grammy Awards
Music News
The Weeknd's Starboy Rises to the Top
FMQB Retro-Active: Ken Sharp Revisits the Iconic Album Pet Sounds, and Delves Into New Music with Joyous Wolf
Quick Hits: Justin Bieber, Guns N' Roses, Carolina Rebellion & Welcome to Rockville, Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve With Ryan Seacrest
Prince Documentary, Celebration on the Way in 2017
Quick Hits: Alessia Cara, Lady Gaga, Dead & Company
Quick Hits: J. Cole, Bon Jovi, Grouplove, Kid Cudi, ABC's Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve
Metallica Earn Sixth #1 Album on Billboard 200
Quick Hits: Taylor Swift, Rock On The Range, Kelly Clarkson
Quick Hits: Grammy Hall Of Fame, Soul Train Awards, Guns N' Roses
Justin Bieber and Drake Top 2016 American Music Awards
Quick Hits: Bruno Mars, Adele, The Weeknd, Chance The Rapper
Quick Hits: Kanye West, The Weeknd, Coldplay
Soul Singer Sharon Jones Dead at 60
Quick Hits: A Tribe Called Quest, Kanye West, Kesha
Quick Hits: Green Day, Justin Bieber, Bon Jovi
FMQB NOW

Ross Mahoney, PD
KXTE, Las Vegas



Question Of
The Week

Advertisement:
Search FMQB.com
Advertisements:
FMQB Member Login
Email:
Pass:

Save
Not a member yet?
Sign up Now!
Sign Up for Breaking News!
Enter FMQB E-Tracking!