FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
News media information 202/418-0500
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
November 23, 2004
NEWS MEDIA CONTACT:|
Janice Wise at (202) 418-7450
Washington, D.C.: - The Federal Communications Commission today entered into a $3.5 million Consent Decree with Viacom Inc. (``Viacom'') and certain of its subsidiaries to resolve investigations into whether Viacom broadcast stations, as well as non-Viacom owned affiliates of the CBS Television Network and UPN, had aired obscene, indecent, and/or profane material in violation of the Communications Act and Commission rules.
As part of the agreement, Viacom admits that some of the material that it broadcast was indecent, in violation of 47 C.F.R. § 73.3999. In addition to the $3.5 million payment to the U.S. Treasury, Viacom has committed to implementing a company-wide Compliance Plan aimed at preventing future violations.
The Consent Decree resolves pending Notices of Apparent Liability, Forfeiture Orders, Enforcement Bureau investigations, and third-party complaints for possible violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1464 and 47 C.F.R. § 73.3999 except for the $550,000 NAL released September 22, 2004 concerning the broadcast of the February 1, 2004 Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show, which is expressly excluded from the scope of the Consent Decree.
The pending Notices of Apparent Liability covered by the Consent Decree are a $357,500 NAL released October 2, 2003, a $27,500 NAL released March 18, 2004, and a $21,000 NAL released June 7, 2002. The pending Forfeiture Orders covered by the Consent Decree are a $7,000 Forfeiture Order released March 2, 2001, and a $27,500 Forfeiture Order released December 8, 2003.
Action by the Commission: November 23, 2004, Order (FCC 04-268). Chairman Powell and Commissioners Abernathy, Copps, Martin and Adelstein. Commissioners Copps and Martin concurring and issuing separate statements. Commissioner Adelstein issuing a statement.
Enforcement Bureau contacts: Suzanne Tetreault or Lisa Fowlkes at (202) 418-7450