Monday, July 21, 2008

COURT CANCELS FINE FOR JANET JACKSON'S 'WARDROBE MALFUNCTION'

The third US Court of Appeals has thrown out a half million dollar fine against CBs in the Janet Jackson "wardrobe malfunction" case in which one of her breasts was briefly exposed during a Super Bowl halftime show. The court said the FCC acted "acted arbitrarily and capriciously."

The FCC, in the opinion of the court did not live up to its own standard of only fining programming that was so "pervasive as to amount to 'shock treatment' for the audience."

"Like any agency, the FCC may change its policies without judicial second-guessing. But it cannot change a well-established course of action without supplying notice of and a reasoned explanation for its policy departure."

"Its orders constituted the announcement of a policy change - that fleeting images would no longer be excluded from the scope of actionable indecency."

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