The Parents Television Council applauds the announcement of a consent decree entered into between the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the corporate owner of radio station WSKQ-FM in New York, whereby the station will pay a $10,000 fine to settle allegations that it aired legally indecent material between the hours of 6am-10pm. Members of the public filed a formal complaint with the FCC alleging that WSKQ-FM in New York aired a song describing how a man desired to have “perverse sexual relations.”
“The PTC applauds the FCC’s action to hold a broadcaster publicly to account for violating the longstanding broadcast indecency law. This announcement today should serve as a serious shot across the bow for all broadcast stations, whether they be radio or television, reminding them that the airwaves are public property. Broadcasters borrow the airwaves from the public for free; and in exchange for a broadcast license, they promise to serve the public interest. Congress, the FCC and the courts have all agreed that a broadcaster’s public interest obligation requires licensees not to air legally indecent material at times when children are likely to be in the audience,” said PTC President Tim Winter.
“We are heartened that the FCC under its new chairman, Ajit Pai, has moved so quickly to establish its commitment to enforcing the broadcast indecency law. While we would have preferred to have the FCC adjudicate this case on its merits, clearly the enforcement bureau deemed the complaint worthy of action. This ‘plea bargain’ deal puts all broadcasters on notice that the law will be enforced. That law applies both to radio and TV broadcasters, regardless of the language used to communicate the indecent content.”