Report: Powell Considered License Revocation Hearings Against CBS
February 9, 2004
FCC Chairman Michael Powell considered initiating a license revocation hearing against CBS after last week's Super Bowl halftime fiasco, The Drudge Report says. "A furious Powell vocalized the license revocation option against CBS-owned outlets to senior staff at the FCC in the hours and days after the event," Drudge says, quoting an unnamed "top source from Washington."
Drudge quotes another anonymous source, this one from the FCC, as saying: "There is a feeling that [Viacom chief Mel] Karmazin is reckless when it comes to self policing his outlets. What I belive you will see is a push for a complete and detailed explanation from Mr. Karmzin... on Opie & Anthony sex acts in the church to the halftime Super Bowl concert, on down."
Contributing to Powell's ire has been an unprecedented avalanche of complaints. As FMQB reported on Friday, the Commission has logged more than 200,000 complaints about Janet Jackson's live-TV breast-barring. That's just 40,000 shy of the total number of indecency complaints it received all last year. The number is 120,000 more than agency received after actress Nicole Richie fired an F-bomb on the 2003 Billboard Music Awards.
"The vast majority express outrage that this occurred during a family program, when many children were in the viewing audience," said the FCC's K. Dane Snowden.
Media watchdog Parent Television Council says it has received more than 24,000 complaints about the half-time show.