Networks Ask Fcc To Alter Course On Indecency

The FCC's crackdown on indecency threatens to do away with all live broadcasting, most of the major TV networks have told the government regulator. It has also resulted in the cancellation of some programs and others being jammed into late-night hours, the networks said in a filing on Thursday. They also argued that the FCC has yet to define indecency, pointing out that the same language that was used in Saving Private Ryan, which the agency permitted, resulted in a fine when it was used during the airing of Martin Scorsese's documentary The Blues. "This assertion of 'we know it when we see it' -- or worse, 'we know it when someone with influence on us says we see it' -- is not a plainly expressed legal standard," the networks wrote. On the other hand, the Parents Television Council, the group that spearheaded the FCC crackdown, demanded that the FCC "vigorously enforce the law as written and to carefully adjudicate the hundreds of thousands of indecency complaints from the American people." Virtually all of the hundreds of thousands of complaints were generated directly by the PTC. "It is clear that the broadcast networks would prefer to assert a 'right' to air unlimited profanity at any time of day, rather than submit to the established and reasonable principle of protecting children between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m.," the PTC said.



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