The gripes of wrath, 1H 2007


The FCC was a little slow getting out its report on consumer inquiries and complaints for 2007, which are usually released on a quarterly basis. This time, reports for both Q1 and Q2 2007 have been put out simultaneously. The stats show a slight uptick over the six month period in consumer DTV inquiries, which totalled 553 in Q1 and rose to 651 during Q2. Program issues were relatively steady, with 4,563 coming in during Q1 and 4,299 during Q2.

Indecency is the category everyone is interested in, and it was a relatively quiet category during Q4 2006, when only 31K complaints rolled in. That number ballooned to 148,281 during January 2007 alone before settling back into a much quieter pattern. There were an even 1,000 in February and only 176 in March for a Q1 total of 149,457; followed by 4,055 in April, 212 in May and 101 in June, for a Q2 total of only 4,368.

RBR/TVBR observation: We looked back in our archives for January. It appears that a wave of protest may have been caused by a lingering camera shot of a football fan during a NFL playoff game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New Orleans Saints that expressed a less-than-savory opinion of the Eagles. The Parents Television Council maintained that the shot was intentional; Fox said it wasn’t, and that it should be excused under the fleeting, non-repetitive accidident clause that used to be the rule, even for f-bombs. The FCC didn’t issue a new indecency finding all year while fighting the fleeting battle in court.