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Hollywood Voices Decry Indecency Crackdown

The Center for Creative Voices in Media, which includes some voices from the Hollywood production community, has added its voice to the court challenge by networks and TV stations of some of the FCC's indecency crackdown.

"These Commission decisions put creative, challenging, controversial, non-homogenized broadcast television programming at risk, harming not only media artists, but the American public,” said Center Executive Director Jonathan Rintels, announcing his group's filing of a motion to intervene, which it is doing in support of the challenge.

Among the voices the center represents are TV producers Steven Bochco and Tom Fontana, directors Warren Beatty and Blake Edwards, and children's tV activist Peggy Charren.

Back in March, the center blasted the recent raft of proposed FCC indecency findings (called "notices of apparent liability" or NALs), several of which targeting profanity drew the court challenge by CBS, Fox, and others. The center renewed those criticism Monday.

The Center also warned Monday against raising the indecency fines 10-fold or more, as would bills in congress that could get some attention this week in the Senate Commerce Committee.

"The consistent inconsistency of the FCC decisions, and the 'chilling effect' they place on free speech," said Rintels, "should concern and give pause to legislators now considering increasing these chilling FCC fines tenfold or more, and extending those fines to creative artists. Such legislation will chill even more speech that is supposed to be protected by the First Amendment."