PTC Pushes High Court to Take Indecency Case


The Parents Television council has
filed an amicus brief at the Supreme Court, urging it to agree to review the
FCC's indecency enforcement policy.

The FCC and Obama administration
have asked the High Court to review lower court rulings finding that regime is
arbitrary and capricious and an unconstitutional chilling of speech.

PTC, whose complaints were partly responsible for the FCC's
decision to pursue "fleeting" nudity and language, argues that
broadcasting is still uniquely pervasive and uniquely accessible to children,
which is the rationale the High Court used to uphold the FCC's indecency
enforcement powers in the Pacifica case.

"A public broadcaster's
fiduciary duty to use the public airwaves for the public good is not a relic of
a gentler time," said PTC in its filing, in this case using "public" to
apply to all broadcasters you use the airwaves.

PTC also argues that if the court does not overturn the Second
Circuit Court of Appeals findings that the FCC indecency enforcement regime is
unconstitutional, "The Court need not guess what the broadcasters will do
with broadcast television programming if the Second Circuit's holding in Fox is
left undisturbed. The future is now on basic cable television."

The Second Circuit concluded that
FCC findings of indecency against swearing on Fox awards shows
and, by extension, its fining of ABC stations for nudity in an episode of NYPD
Blue were based on an unconstitutionally vague standard.

The High Court is expected to
decide by next month whether to hear the case.