Indecency complaints were up but not high in Q4 2011


During the final three months of 2011 the FCC registered an increase in the number of consumer complaints concerning broadcast licensees, including an increase in the most closely-watched category – indecency/obscenity. Still, the results further underscored the fact that such content is either a rarity on broadcast airwaves, or few care enough to complain.

There were only 538 indecency/obscenity complaints during the third quarter of the year. In Q4, it increased to 723, with 268 occurring in October, 259 in November and 196 in December. Overall complaints increased from 2,083 in Q3 to 2,406.

During the fourth quarter, 602 additional programming complaints came under the heading of general criticism and another 751 fell into the “other programming’ catchall category.

The FCC said 97 complaints have to do the broadcast service and 233 were about interference.

RBR-TVBR observation: We know there are watchdogs out there that are more than happy to complain to the FCC, so we have to conclude that the vast majority of broadcasters are playing by the rules when it comes to program content.