The Lincoln Plawg - the blog with footnotes

Politics and law from a British perspective (hence Politics LAW BloG): ''People who like this sort of thing...'' as the Great Man said

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Thursday, May 06, 2004
 

FCC hot corner getting hotter


John Kerry seems to generating only a whole lot of Joementum right now.

But the Big Mo bearing down on Mikey Powell and his Comstock Commissioners is surprising and impressive in its strength and acceleration.

We've already (April 21) had the petition led by Viacom asking the FCC to think again about its censorship policies. Now, a number of CBS affiliates have put in comments in support of the petition (also here), warning that:
they will be forced to abandon live news coverage — or drop local news altogether — unless the Federal Communications Commission relaxes its position against airing material it deems indecent.

The Pat Tillman funeral swearing, mentioned yesterday, rather gives heft to their argument.

Meanwhile, some PBS stations have complained to the FCC that
the [Bono] ruling has forced some of their members to debate censoring such seemingly innocent programs as "Antiques Roadshow."

If there's an element of hyperbole here - well, the Comstocks started it!

We now have the first transcript of the HR 3717 hearings[1], the session including Robert Corn-Revere, the First Amendment lawyer who drafted the Viacom petition.

It's not the most immediately rewarding couple of megs you could download - the bloviating members and fire-eating Comstock hog the time, and aren't interesting in engaging RCR's arguments. (No wonder! They're pretty well fatal to the entire indecency censorship regime.)

  1. It's #108-67 - you need to open the PDF link in a browser window - if you save it to disk, you get HTML mush instead! (I could have tried this to produce an URL - but frankly I couldn't be bothered!)


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