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FCC indecency rules struck down

By Ed O'Keefe

By The Post's Cecilia Kang in Post Tech:

A federal appeals court on Tuesday knocked down the Federal Communications Commission's indecency policy, saying that the agency's guidelines for fleeting expletives and other indecencies in broadcast violate the First Amendment.
The opinion was a win for Fox Television, CBS Broadcasting and ABC, which had petitioned the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals, saying guidelines on "fleeting expletives," implemented by the FCC in 2004, were arbitrary and capricious.
The three-judge panel of the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York said in its opinion that the FCC's policy was "unconstitutionally vague, creating a chilling effect that goes far beyond the fleeting expletives at issue here."

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By Ed O'Keefe  | July 13, 2010; 3:07 PM ET
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Personally, I wish the FCC had made the fine $3.25 million.

This ruling is just another chip in the armor that separates us from a bunch of long-armed, ape-like brutes that bumble about saying and doing anything they like, whenever and wherever they like (the Vice President comes to mind). The FCC rule is an infringment of free speech? What a load of nonsense! Now we're down to saying that people have a right to use foul language (referring to a sex act) to make a public statement? Does this make sense to anyone? Did the addition of a four-letter expletive add anything substantive to Bono's statement? Are we to allow Janet to flash us her genitalia at her next half-time appearance? How about we mainatin a standard that people keep their stuff in their pants and their four-letter expletives to themselves? If people want to use that sort of language or have "wardrobe malfunctions" (what a crock) in their homes, that's up to them. But let's not encourage people to salt every public statement or appearance they make with such non-substantive, excessively-exagerrative speech and gestures.

What has happened to expecting people to exhibit a little civility in public? More importantly, what is wrong with it?

Posted by: flintston | July 13, 2010 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Good Question:

What is wrong with expecting people to exhibit a little civility in public?

WTF? (I guess I don't have to use abbreviations any more?). I guess we can curse and flaunt and screw all we want in public -- just as long as our seat belts are fastened and we're not smoking.

Posted by: CadronBoy | July 13, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

You still have to use abbreviations on the wapo, apparently.

Posted by: jiji1 | July 14, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Thank goodness for sensibility at last. The Christian radical right really need to find something good to do. Such hypocrisy!

Posted by: pkbishop1 | July 14, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

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