FCC Loses on Profanity


The Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently ruled that the FCC’s policy of penalizing broadcasters for accidental expletives was “arbitrary and capricious” and would likely run afoul of the First Amendment. The court said all speech covered by the FCC's indecency policy was fully protected by the First Amendment.


Bottom Line: This is good news for the networks, who have complained for years about the FCC’s overly restricive rules, but the more “macro level” rules will likely not be affected by this ruling. No one should expect to find Howard Stern happily conducting his typical show during prime time anytime soon.

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