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August 30, 2015

CBS steps up fight against Super Bowl fine

by Anna Johns, posted Nov 25th 2006 2:14PM
janet jackson; super bowl; breast; justin timberlakeCBS is fighting like hell against the $550,000 fine against its stations for the now-infamous "wardrobe malfunction" during the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show when Janet Jackson flashed America. The network has taken the fine to an appellate court, where it argued the decision "raises First Amendment and due process questions and is arbitrary and capricious".

The network says the baring of Janet's breast was an accident that lasted nine-sixteenths of a second and called it a "blink and you miss it" event. The network argues that, despite the FCC ruling, the incident was not explicit or graphic because very few people actually saw it in real time (oh, but we all saw it on the news in slow motion and on the internet). The network also cites previous FCC rulings on nudity that contradict its Super Bowl fine, claiming the FCC essentially changed its rules in order to impose a stiff fine to appease the "masses" who freaked out about a boobie. In response, the FCC accused CBS of wanting to show naked bodies to little kids... or something like that.

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sports guy

F the FCC. I'd fight it. There was even a nip.

November 29 2006 at 10:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I still don't understand why I am allowed to watch the bare behinds of every actor on NYPD Blue but I can't see Janet Jackson's breast for 9/16 of a second? Somehow, it smacks of sexism.

November 27 2006 at 2:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I think CBS is good to fight it for those very reasons. There are plenty of things on scripted TV that if you pause or slow down your TIVO, you could also find. This was a split second incident and if the image hadn't been captured over and over again, the FCC would have nothing to complain about.

November 27 2006 at 1:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Not Bitter

Pay the fine!

Get better Boobies next time.

They should have been fined for showing old skank boobie.

November 27 2006 at 10:47 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

This is completely ridiculous...I do not know of ONE person who contacted the FCC or CBS to complain.

November 26 2006 at 9:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wow, everyone seems to be sarcasm-challenged on the boards today--is it tryptophan withdrawal> Darien was making a joke, y'all.

That being said, as Anna pointed out: the live visual was so fleeting as to be almost unnoticeable; the real play came on news show after edutainment show after talk show. So why aren't they the ones getting fined?

November 26 2006 at 4:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Well, first, I can't believe this hasn't been handled yet. But really, I don't think CBS has any reason to pay the fine. It IS a matter of principle, so I don't think how much they're paying to fight it is relevant. I did blink and miss it. Everyone around me wasn't even sure they had seen it, until it became publicized. It's stupid, wasn't their fault, and COME ON, this is the 21st century, must we all remain senseless prudes? Everyone has seen a nipple at one point in their life or another, so get the hell over it. It's perfectly natural, and people should not get so offended over stupid things. The FCC shouldn't be encouraged, either; I agree with Tucker. If people would just learn to accept things, and not get offended by things that aren't offensive, we'd all be so much better off. Especially people like you, Darien- I mean seriously, if you can bear watch it on the tivo multiple times, you have no right to complain.

November 26 2006 at 3:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

CBS absolutely should NOT pay this fine, even if the legal fees far exceed the cost of the fine. Our legal system is based on precedent, and if the FCC wrangles that cash out of CBS it puts a regulatory agency that already has very few checks on its power on a slippery slope to doing whatever the hell it pleases.

November 26 2006 at 12:33 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

David4 couldn't have said it better myself.

November 26 2006 at 11:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

"I mean I had to keep rewinding and reviewing it on my Tivo because I just couldn't believe my eyes..."

Maybe they should fine you then. You are the problem, not her. She was tasteful? When was that? When she was fat? It was a mistake, move on.

November 26 2006 at 10:10 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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