Fox to FCC: Regulating indecency "defies the Constitution and common sense"

As the Federal Communications Commission begins considering what to do about regulating indecency on the broadcast airwaves, it appears there are not just one or two but three sides lining up in an effort to tell the FCC what it should or should not do.

On the one side, there are folks like the National Religious Broadcasters, who earlier this week said staying tough on profanity is the way to go.

Other broadcasters say it's time to loosen the restrictions a bit, giving broadcasters a bit more leeway.

And then there's FOX, which wants the FCC out of the indecency-regulating game all together.

“Time and technology have moved inexorably forward, but the commission’s untenable effort to define indecent content through a hodgepodge of inconsistent and uneven rulings remain stuck in a bygone era,” FOX wrote in a filing with the Commission.

Saying that regulation “defies the Constitution and common sense,” the company urged the Commission to “conclude it is legally required and logically bound to cease attempting broadcast indecency limits once and for all.”

Several consumer groups have, more or less, agreed with Fox. In a separate filing, TechFreedom, the Center for Democracy & Technology, Public Knowledge and the Electronic Frontier Foundation said that the FCC enforcement policy is bad for broadcast TV.

“Broadcasting is no longer the cultural force it once was — or an “intruder in the home,” the groups argued. With consumers able to find similar content virtually everywhere else without restrictions, limiting such things on broadcast TV “is neither sound policy, nor constitutionally defensible.”

We'll see how it goes.


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