If there was one clear message that came from the Supreme Court when it ruled on FCC v. Fox Television Stations, we’d say that it was the order that the FCC clarify its indecency rules and do so with full public participation. But watchdog Parents Television Council is attacking the Commission for doing just that.
PTC’s Tim Winter found three things to be distressed over concerning the FCC’s release seeking public comment and announcing the dismissal of 70% of the indecency case backlog. He said, “It unnecessarily weakens a decency law that withstood a ferocious, ten-year constitutional attack waged by the broadcast industry. It invites yet another wave of special interest pressure to obviate the intent of Congress and the will of the American people. And it connotes a change in indecency enforcement policy at the FCC that nobody knew about, with the ‘egregious’ standard apparently having been adopted unilaterally by the Enforcement Bureau or perhaps by the Chairman himself.”
Winter believes that the FCC’s action is a prelude to caving into entertainment industry lobbyists, or a prelude to a new round of court action, or both.
He encouraged concerned citizens to participate in the FCC proceeding,
RBR-TVBR observation: PTC really needs to stop pretending it speaks for the American people.
I can do it to – here is my proclamation: On behalf of millions upon millions of American families, I urge the FCC to respect the First Amendment to the greatest possible extent and to trust us to monitor what our children watch as well as to change the channel according to our own personal tastes.
As we’ve pointed out many times, despite the fact that PTC looks at television and sees an open sewer, there is rarely any material aired on broadcast that rises to the level of an FCC indecency action. And that includes after 10PM when racy content is legal – even then, broadcasters keep it clean.
Finally, we decided to take a look at how many followers we’re talking about here. PTC claims 1.3M members, but if that’s true, it sure isn’t reflected in the organization’s Twitter account.
Howard Stern, who was attacked recently by PTC just for accepting a gig on a TV talent show, had 1,388,721 Twitter followers when we checked recently. Cable host Bill Maher had 2,037,325.
PTC had 2,637 when we looked this morning. That’s right, we didn’t leave off any zeroes. Two thousand six hundred thirty seven.
Perhaps it’s unfair to compare PTC to popular entertainers. But lesser-known children’s content watchdog Common Sense also has a Twitter account, and it has 4,991 followers, almost double the PTC mini-throng.
On this level at least, it appears that there isn’t very much dog behind the PTC bark.