Pbs To Take On The Fcc On Indecency
PBS has vowed to battle the FCC in its stand against indecent language on television. Meeting with television writers and critics in Pasadena Wednesday, PBS President Paula Kerger said, "This is not just about Janet Jackson. ... This is an issue of free speech. It is an issue because our filmmakers deserve to be able to tell their stories and tell them well." She cited in particular noted documentary filmmaker Ken Burns's upcoming The War, in which World War II veterans use salty language in describing their experiences on the battlefield. Acknowledging that the language will be offensive to some viewers, Kerger said, "They should have the opportunity not to watch something if it's going to be troubling. But for others to be able to see a documentary and to be able to let a person tell their own story and not censor the words that are coming out of their mouth is tremendously important." She said that she recently asked FCC commissioners if PBS stations would be fined if the language was left in. "No one said, 'Oh, go ahead and run it.' They said, 'Well, you know, we understand.' So I can't really ... read their minds. I don't know."