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NEWS: Clear Channel to pay $1.75 Million in FCC Fines

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posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 10:38 AM
Some say it all began with Janet Jackson's breast being shown on live television during a Superbowl half time show. Others claim it was that incident which lead to the FCC crack down mainly on the voices of radio such as shock jock Howard Stern who worked for the giant Clear Channel corporation and has now been fired by the radio giant. But is there a deeper agenda at work here...
The Federal Communications Commission had already proposed three fines against the radio giant and was investigating 14 other incidents, the source said, declining further identification.
The agency also had numerous other complaints against Clear Channel radio stations that it had not yet acted upon but the agreement, which could be released as early as Wednesday, would "wipe the slate clean," the source said.

"It's not just about the punishment, more importantly it's about the deterrent effect," the source said.

An FCC spokeswoman declined to comment. Clear Channel representatives were not immediately available for comment.

The agency has been cracking down on radio and television stations after a spate of indecency incidents, including pop singer Janet Jackson exposing a bare breast during a national television broadcast earlier this year

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

Shock Jock Howard Stern has claimed numerous times on his radio show that the FCC is out to get him and the Janet Jackson incident only motivated them further. But in many rants on radio Howard Stern has also claimed that the FCC which is headed by the son of Colon Powell is out to "shut him up" because he changed his position on the war in Iraq, and spoke out harshly against the Bush Administration. In Stern's view "its a free speech issue" and a larger part of "the christian agenda"

The record setting fines against Clear Channel are meant to "clean up radio broadcasts" and in their defence shows such as Howard Stern's offer adult humor and vulgar content at times of the day when children could be listening. Conversely Howard Stern got away with his adult content loaded show for over 20 years with only a small fine here and there.

Is he right, is this a free speech issue? Or is it time to remove this adult content from open broadcasts on radio and television?

[edit on 9-6-2004 by Banshee]

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 10:42 AM
Whats the deeper agenda? That porn in any form shouldn't be made mainstream? People like Howard Stern sell porn without having to wrap it in brown paper. Is this what we want to make readily available to children? Smut sells and makes stars out of nobodies with no talent.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 12:11 PM
First, let me say that I use Howard Stern to define the upper end of my "how offensive is it?" scale. On the other hand, freedom of speech is one of the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Constitution, or what's left of it. How many times have you heard a war veteran, usually WW2 or Korean, say "I disagree with what you say, but I will defend unto the death your right to say it"? If so-called the "porn" of people like Howard Stern is abuse of free speech, who gets to draw the line between acceptable and non-acceptable? Personally, I find Jerry Falwell's speech offensive, so will the FCC fine him and throw him off the air? I think not. While the originators of the idea of free speech did not have the ability to predict the reach and impact of broadcast media, they had the right idea in that they wanted to keep the government from dictating or limiting the ideas available for public discussion. If the government is allowed to put a sock in Stern's mouth, they can put one wherever they choose. Personally, I think they would be smarter to leave him alone and spend their energies doing something constructive, like helping family farmers hold on to their farms, or small shopowners fend off wal-mart -- -- -- but I digress.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 12:21 PM

Originally posted by Mynaeris
Whats the deeper agenda? That porn in any form shouldn't be made mainstream?

There is a great deal of truth in what you say, as a parent I do not want my children exposed to that crap... But I don't think they'd listen anyway.. bucause to them talk is boring.. I do find it odd that Horawd Stern got away with this stuff for some 20 years and only after the Janet Jackson incident it seems like the FCC went on a mission against him.. But at that same time Stern who was a up until then a strong supporter of the war, and a mild supporter of the Bush administration, But during that time Howard changed his position on those issues and it was within days of openly on air slamming Bush and saying "we need to get this madman out of office" that is when the FCC came down hard on Clear Channel and Howard Stern.. so it is possible there is a deeper agenda at work here.. Howard points out that Oprah talks about sexual acts on her daytime show and offers a clip to prove it on his web site.. when compared to what Oprah talks about and what Howard was hit for the wording is almost the same and just as graphic.. his point is a good one If Oprah can get away with talk like this on Daytime TV without fines why should he be fined. or why not fine Oprah for doing the same. of course many will argue that what Oprah was doing was educational and informative so it is OK.. but is it really? Why have a double standard at all? and by the way NOT ONE person involved in the Janet Jackson incident has been fined yet!

Also these $1.75 million in fines are new, Clear Channel has already agreed to pay some $750,000 in FCC fines!


[edit on 9-6-2004 by UM_Gazz]

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 12:29 PM
There is a huge double standard!!! Oprah, The View, Jerry Springer, Jenny Jones - They all pedal "smut" in one way or another. Howard has adult (Very Adult) topics on his show and if you don't like or can't handle it, tunr the dial. Just like you probably tell your kids not to watch Jerry Springer you can tell them not to listen to Howard Stern. The fines he is given are BS. And he is exactly right when saying that he is being attacked because of his new stance on Bush and the war. Stern has a huge following and the FCC knows it!!!


posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 12:39 PM

U.S. Constitution: Amendment 1
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Just because you don't like it doesn't make it illegal.
(side note: I'm not a Stern fan, or even an occasional listener, but I'm a big fan of the Constitution)

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 12:54 PM
Clear Channel voluntarily paid, even though the FCC leveed no actual fines. Keyword here is "proposed".

The Federal Communications Commission had already proposed three fines...

Shareholders going to be pissed about this.
Time for el dumpo de stocko:

You don't see Viacom coughing up the bucks. Something smells funny!

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 12:59 PM
Lets be honest here the way Howard Stern approaches subjects and the way Oprah deals with them is vastly different, Even Jerry Springer wouldn't take on the issue of anal sex on public airways. You would be amazed at the number of teenagers that have read Howard Stern's books or consider his show almost gospel about what women are like? Do I believe in the freedom of speech? Yes. Would I let a hooker work the corner outside my door? NO. Do I believe that the US is 20 years late in kicking Howard Stern off the air? Yes. Why have we made a guy doing second rate Playboy articles a celebrity?

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:01 PM
I've never been a big Stern fan either. I don't find him offensive, I just don't find him entertaining. To me it is a free speech issue. While it may be in poor taste to have adult content on in the daytime, I can choose not to listen to it. I can choose to prevent my children from listening to it. The FCC is trying to prevent me from having to make that decision, and frankly, I don't need their help. When you take away my ability to make the choice, you've taken away my freedom.

Incidentally many people think I'm crazy for this, but I am convinced the Janet Jackson incident was a staged event by the government for this very purpose. Jackson needed the help with her waining career and something to make news for her other than her brother, and the FCC needed a big event to justify their crackdown. After one boob, enough of the public was outraged enough to allow them to limit our freedoms.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:07 PM
Think about it people, if the FCC can pick and choose who they fine and are so selective while letting others get away with the same adult or offencive content they can in effect abuse their power for a political agenda.

Now ask yourselves what comes next? Perhaps Mr. Powell will find ATS one day while surfing the web and see something he doesn't like... and pushes for new laws, then Fining the owners of thus shutting down this site.

When you are able to run a government office like this anything is possible. Just think about it.


posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:14 PM
Personally I don't like Stern. I think his material is garbage. But as an American I must support our constitution and our right to free speech. If you don't like Stern then don't listen. Perhaps you (meaning people in general) need to have better control of your kid. Quit worrying about everyone else and take care of your own dang family. You going to stop sending your kid to school because that is where kids get their sex ed. From other kids. Gonna do that? Of course not because that means more work for you. Its easier to blame everyone else. If you cant control what your kids see on tv or listen to on the radio then get rid of those devices. If they go over to a friends house and listen to Stern then don't let them go over. Hate to say it but chances are they are more likely to go to a channel like HBO, Showtime or Cinnemax and watch the adult programming then they are to listen to Stern.

This is nothing more than the conservative agenda to attack the right to free speech and freedom of the press. Remember the constitution makes no exceptions for those rights.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:45 PM
"This is nothing more than the conservative agenda to attack the right to free speech and freedom of the press. Remember the constitution makes no exceptions for those rights."


Like I and and a few others have already said, turn the dial. When I was growing up I wasn't allowed to listen or watch anything like that. But that didn't mean I didn't see or hear about those things or images somewhere else. Using "the children" as an excuse to ban or punish Stern and those like him is ludacris. If a kid listens to Stern without permission and you take Stern off the air then that kid will just get his fix somewhere else. Hell, a kid could walk into Barnes and Nobles and cozy up to a book on Kuma Satra, or The Joy of Sex, Or 101 Ways to Make Love. What Howard does isn't illegal, immoral by most standards, not NOT ILLEGAL!

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:50 PM
This is definitly a free speach issue. I have watched the Howard Stern show on E! several times. Some shows are just outright hilarious, and some are not so funny. There have been moments when I don't agree with him, but...

The bad part of this is that the FCC is getting down everybody's throats about 'lude and indecent behavior'... it's just censorship! The sad thing is that if there are 100 people, and 1 person doesn't like something, they can go to court and restrict the other 99 people from it as well. The media is getting insane! We need to take it back... get control of it again. The 'people' only get to hear what the FCC or the mainstream media wants us to hear, and when someone jumps up with an opposing view, it gets shut up too quickly.

I agree, kids shouldn't be watching or listening to adult content, but look at it this way: It's not the government's responsibility to police your kids! It's your own fault if they watch or listen to this stuff. It's YOUR responsibility to know what they are doing, who they are hanging out with, and what they are listening to and learning. Parent's are way too lazy when it comes to raising their kids. It's almost like they didn't really want them in the first place. I mean, really... if you are gonna buy a dog, you expect to feed it, give it water, make sure it doesn't bite people, and you know you have to clean up it's crap. Why should having a kid be any different? The government agencies aren't babysitters. Take a bit of your precious time and pay attention to what your kids are doing for christ's sake!!! If you don't like your kids watching it, YOU censor it... don't ruin it for the rest of us because you are too lazy to turn the channel or discipline your own kids.

*EDIT: On a side note, if this doesn't end soon, I'm gonna start a movement to keep Mormans and other religious rights off the street and off my doorstep! Wouldn't be so concerned, but they don't6 have an 'off' switch, and it takes a person forever to get rid of them without getting just outright nasty. Is the FCC gonna do anything about that? Nope.

[edit on 9-6-2004 by Earthscum]

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:53 PM
I was going to walk away from this debate but I am drawn back by the last poster. Howard Stern offers nothing more or less than playboy magazine. But Playboy isn't made as readily available as Stern is. Everybody speaks about controlling the content that children watch. Which guy here didn't find porn fascinating as a teen? Howard Stern is pure porn dressed up as shock for the rebel in people. Hey its time to grow up and realize the fantasy that this old guy sells to the kids isn't real. Ever tell your kids not to take candy from strangers? In closing Clear channel is throwing Howard to the dogs because his ratings are way down from Howard the God of shock. Now he is just another dirty mouthed old man? At least Hugh Hefner airbrushes.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 01:56 PM
Man this is GREAT!!! This FCC SH*T has been eating at me for a long time. I'm so glad to see that there are some intellegent views on why this is so blatantly wrong and has to be stopped.

Mark my words, if something doesn't change soon, you will see radio shows getting fines for slandering the president and his office. Stern is getting that right now, just in a different way. They are using the edgy content of his show to hit him, but we know it's really becuase of his new political views againts BUSH.

Also, it's not far off that TV will start to feel the same pressure that the radio does now. We will be watching Leave it to Beaver reruns nightly on Nickolodeon cause that will the the only thing left allowed.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 02:11 PM
lets clear one thing up, clear channel is not nor were they ever howard sterns boss, they had a contract with viacom/CBS to air his show on thsi radio stations, they were a customer, not his boss. so while they might have canceled his contract, they had no power to fire him. in fact other radio stations played him while clear channel went overboard and overreacted with this "zero tolerance policy" they adopted after janet jackson decided to show her saggy floppy boob during halftime.

now as much as people want to hate the guy. he didnt go on the half time show during the super bowl and whip his genitals out. in fact people KNOW what his show is about. so if you listen, you CHOOSE to listen just like you CHOOSE to be offended when you CHOOSE to listen to his show. now i've not liked his show for a few reasons but i never complained about it and not once did i ever suggest that he should be taken off the air. if i dont like something i turn it off or walk away from it. obviously there are a lot of people who DO like his show as he has been on the air for decades now and makes tons of money off of it. its been profitable for him and the companies he's worked for. at no time are any of you obligated to listen to him or like him. you are also not obligated to turn on your radio or TV. if you think howard stern is the root of the problem or a major cause you should get your head examined.

advertising is full of sexual innuendo, games, movies, shows, music, its all full of what falls under most of your all's definition of pornographic but i dont see any of you wanting to hold the stations responsible or the advertisers responsible or the game makers or the film makers responsible. but people LOVE to use howard stern as a scapegoat. and this thread shows it.

instead of holding janet "floppy boob" jacksoon responsible for her actions we now blame howard stern??? the super bowl was and still is a family oriented show while howards stern show has been long established as being a show that is not for everyone. i'mmmore outraged at ms/ floppy boob because the super bowl is not the place to to do that. even howard stern was disgusted by it! even he recognizes there is a time and a place and the super bowl wasnt the time or the place. but you all dont know this because none of you really give the guy a fair chance.

but how is howard stern all that different from bob and tom? they make fart jokes and lots of jokes about other things that i think are far worse than lesbians! howard stern isnt the only one who does this but he was one of the originals and if it werent for him you wouldnt have your bob and toms, there wouldnt have been a man cow. but he gets all the blame even though he's about a .001% of the problem you people complain about.

dont like it? turn your TV off. having a TV or cable isnt a right! dont like what you hear on the radio? turn it over or turn it off, listening to the radio isnt a right either and there are lots of other stations to listen to.

stop blaming one man and look at the bigger picture.


posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 02:56 PM

Originally posted by Mynaeris
Howard Stern offers nothing more or less than playboy magazine.

Playboy has interviewed most of the significant voices of the twentieth century including:

George McGovern
Walter Cronkite
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Fidel Castro
Al Capone
Bill O'Reilly
Lech Walesa

To name a few.

Complete List:

It's also published stories by:
John Steinbeck
Ernest Hemingway
Jack Kerouac
Alex Haley
Stephen King

Just because it shows boobies, doesn't make it smut. Try going to the Louvre.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 03:02 PM

Originally posted by Mynaeris
In closing Clear channel is throwing Howard to the dogs because his ratings are way down from Howard the God of shock. Now he is just another dirty mouthed old man? At least Hugh Hefner airbrushes.

Get a clue, Stern doesn't even work for Clear Channel. I'm tired of whiney people whining about what others think is funny / not funny. Shut Up Already! Tune in to whatever wannabe jock who fits YOUR idea of humor and SHUT UP ALREADY! I don't p*ss and moan every time I hear or see something I find offensive, why should you? (thats the collective you, not necessarily the poster to whom I've quoted) I'M in charge of what my kids see and hear in the media. ME! If everybody would start doing their jobs as parents and stop relying on the frickin government to legislate it for them, we would go a long way to regaining what was not long ago a pretty decent society to grow up in.

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 03:53 PM
I absolutely DESPISE Clear CHannel, but I oppose the absurd lengths the FCC is going to now, and fear what it may lead to in the future. Like what was said about Prank Monkey, listening to the radio and watching TV are not rights. Freedom of expression, however, IS! If you don't like what is being aired, then as a consumer do what you can and do not give your money or the give the advertisers your attention. The FCC really is full of it. There is a terrible double standard, and they treat 'decency' as if there was a universal standard for it. They say that the F word is among the most foul word in our language. But how is it any worse than saying "Donkey Punch," or "The Rusty Trombone," which you can say on air without getting fined for. It really is a free speech issue because the sanitization of the media infringes upon our rights, and we do not have a constitutional right to not be offended when watching media that we give our money to. Now it's really going to absurd when they start sanitizing cable television...

[edit on 9-6-2004 by spngsambigpants]

posted on Jun, 9 2004 @ 04:21 PM
As to the fine -- how else is the government going to pay for all these tax cuts? But maybe that's just me being cynical again.

I don't like Stern either, and I wouldn't let my kids watch or listen to him. That's what being a parent is, as has been said above. He (and everyone else) has the freedom to say what they want. I have the freedom to not listen to it. I had parents, thanks, and I don't need the government pretending to fill that role.

The Stern controversy, "Free Speech Zones", government refusal to pay for closed-captioning of shows like "Bewitched", retro-classification of documents used in the 9/11 investigation -- it's all part of the current Administration's censorship & obfustication scheme. Free speech is the greatest threat to those who rely on the ignorance & apathy of the general population to achieve their goals.

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