Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Supreme Court upholds FCC expletives policy

The Supreme Court today upheld a policy by the Federal Communications Commission that prohibits the use of curse words during live TV broadcasts. The vote was close, 5-4.

The high court’s decision, which argued broadcasters can be fined for even single curse words used on live TV, throws out a ruling by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York in favor of a Fox Television-led challenge. The lower court had asked for a more detailed reasoning of the tougher stance on indecency.

Tthe court refused to pass judgment on whether the FCC's "fleeting expletives" policy is in line with First Amendment guarantees of free speech. The justices say a federal appeals court should weigh the constitutionality of the policy.

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