It looks like Howard Stern will be taking less heat from one of his most outspoken Washington critics.
Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) is a frequent media critic and co-sponsor of the FCC indecency-crackdown bill in the Senate.
He wrote Viacom twice asking President Mel Karmazin to explain why it didn't yank Stern as indecent when Clear Channel did.
Karmazin's first answer, that Stern wasn't indecent, didn't sit well with the senator.
Viacom called that sufficient, and Karmazin did not respond the second time around.
Now that Karmazin has left the building, does that mean Brownback will renew his attacks on Stern with successors Les Moonves and Tom Freston?
Apparently not. Says a senior staffer, "We have no plans to elicit any new pen pals from Viacom at this time."
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.