Tough to Handicap Judges in Rehearing of FCC Imposed Fine on CBS For Janet Jackson Breast Reveal

Feb 24, 2010  •  Post A Comment

The leanings of the judges were hard to read in Tuesday’s appeals court re-hearing of the FCC-imposed CBS 2004 Super Bowl indecency fine, B&C reports. The case is about Janet Jackson’s famous "wardrobe malfunction" during the halftime show, wherein viewers caught a fleeting glimpse of one of her naked breasts.

Among the issues debated was whether CBS’ intent should be a factor in the fine, as well as the definition of expletive, B&C said.

After the hearing CBS issued this statement, according to B&C: "We are hopeful the Third Circuit will again recognize that the 2004 Super Bowl incident, while inappropriate and regrettable, was not and could not have been anticipated by CBS. This remains an important issue for the entire broadcasting industry because it recognizes that there are rare instances, particularly during live programming, when despite broadcasters’ best efforts it may not be possible to block unfortunate fleeting material. Such a decision by the Court would help to restore the policy of restrained indecency enforcement the FCC followed for decades."

–Chuck Ross

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