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CBS Reviews Options After Super Bowl Indecency Fine

CBS Reviews Options After Super Bowl Indecency Fine

CBS is reviewing its options after the FCC proposed a $550,000 fine for broadcast indecency regarding the Super Bowl halftime show earlier this year.
In a statement from the network, CBS said it was “extremely disappointed” in the ruling. “We continue to believe that nothing in the Super Bowl broadcast violated indecency laws,” the network said. CBS also said its investigation of the Janet Jackson breast-baring incident “proved that no one in our company had any advance knowledge about the incident.”
CBS and Viacom’s cable television unit MTV produced the show.
Since the show aired, lawmakers in both the House and Senate passed legislation to substantially raise the penalty the FCC can assess for broadcast indecency. The current amount, which the commission used for each of the CBS O&O’s, is $27,500.
The House voted to raise the maximum indecency fine to $500,000. The Senate voted to increase the maximum penalty to $275,00 per incident with a cap of $3 million per day. Both bills remain pending in Congress with fewer days for lawmakers to conclude their business in this election year.
The FCC began stronger indecency enforcement soon after the Super Bowl, and has reached two major settlements with large radio groups over several pending indecency cases: a $300,000 settlement with Emmis and $1.75 million for Clear Channel Radio. Both companies have also implemented a so-called “zero-tolerance” policy company-wide in an effort to prevent future indecency violations.