Double down on owner with license challenge


In May 2004 Clear Channel's WAWS-TV in Jacksonville FL ran a contest called "Win a Hot Rod For Dad" in which its staffers made an error. They limited contestants to one entry apiece, based on a draft version of the official rules, but the rules as published contained no such single-entry plank. Robert Hawxhurst submitted multiple entries and was mad enough about having his chances of winning diminished by Clear Channel's refusal to consider all but one that he complained to the FCC.

Clear Channel was found to have failed to run a promotional contest as advertised and was fined 4K. Apparently that was not enough for Hawxhurst, who then challenged the station's license renewal on grounds of running a "rigged" contest and because of the "alleged questionable character of the stations…management." The FCC brushed this aside with great efficiency. It found Clear Channel to be in violation of the rules, Clear Channel promptly redressed the situation and paid the fine, and the matter is closed. The FCC said the "conduct at issue did not constitute a 'serious violation" of the Commission's rules." In short, Hawxhurst has no new axe to grind, and this matter is closed.