FCC. Did they cut back on the rules for TV 12am-6am?

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Larry Fletcher, Jun 2, 2003.

  1. Larry Fletcher

    Larry Fletcher Stunt Coordinator

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    Can anyone confirm this? I was flipping through the channels and heard it on tech tv. I did not get all of it so I apologize if I am incorrect. Is the FCC taking a lighter stance on decency rules for 12am to 6am?

    thanks!
     
  2. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    It'd be nice, wouldn't it?
     
  3. MickeS

    MickeS Producer

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    I didn't even know they were making the rules. I thought the rules were self-imposed by the networks in order to avoid government regulation (not that there would be much of a difference).
     
  4. LarryDavenport

    LarryDavenport Cinematographer

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    I'm more concerned with WAY TOO MANY infomercials. Our local UPN affiliate showed 35 hours this past Saturday and Sunday.
     
  5. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

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    Just as long as they don't pull the commercials for Girls Gone Wild, I like them for some strange reason. [​IMG]

    It would also be nice to never EVER see that Don Laprie dude again!

    If I hear him utter "From my tiny one bedroom apartment, I started placing ads in the newspaper!" one more time...

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    I was just remarking last night that there must have been a change effective June 1. While flipping through (honestly), I noticed Cinemax was playing more softcores than usual (which is saying a lot for Cinemax), and they were taking it much further than usual.
     
  7. Ike

    Ike Screenwriter

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    Greg,

    No ruling the FCC made would have any effect on basic cable, much less the pay cable channels, which are only governed by decency laws. So they could do hardcore, probably, and no one could do anything. The only stations that answer to the FCC are OTA stations-the stuff that floats through the air free of charge. If the FCC laxes it's rules for 12-6, that would only effect ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox, etc, but not HBO, MTV, VH1, Comedy Central, etc.

    The basic cable stations govern themselves based on advertisers and a general guidline of the OTA stations. So, in theory, MTV can show nudity and cursing all they want, but they don't because Pepsi (or whoever) doesn't want that associated with their product. So the only way an FCC ruling like this might effect those stations is in changing the basic atmosphere of what's allowed.

    As for softcore flicks, they've always played a lot, and the newer ones do go farther. Their may have been a policy change, or they got the rights to some newer ones that are more risque. Either way, it probably has very little to do with the FCC.

    Oh well...thank God for HBO and pay cable.
     
  8. Dan Rudolph

    Dan Rudolph Producer

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    Ike: MTV has in fact show a few things uncensored. Scared Straight 2 and the breast augmentation special, for instance. I'm not sure what the current regulations are for night OTA broadcasts, but I know I've seen some pretty racy stuff, such as women wearing what are technically shirts, but so transparent or loose weave they might as well not be.
     
  9. Derek Miner

    Derek Miner Screenwriter

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    Regulation on broadcasting between midnight and 6 am is as loose as it's ever going to get. When I looked up the facts on the "indecency safe harbor," I found that the window was even expanded to include 10 pm to 6 am! This has been in effect since 1995. Only material deemed "obscene" can not be aired in these hours.

    Honestly, the difficulty in proving any material to be obscene pretty much gives broadcasters free reign in these hours, but they obviously choose to define their own standards. I have heard public radio stations broadcasting music that wouldn't fly in the daytime, but that's about the only difference I've ever noticed at night. I have heard of some stations in other parts of the country airing films with nudity uncut in the wee hours, however.
     
  10. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    You can show naked breasts on TV if there's a medical reason for doing so. Meredith Baxter did so for her TV movie on the topic of breast cancer.

    Showing naked breasts for tittilation purposes is a tougher sell to the FCC.
     
  11. Marc_Sulinski

    Marc_Sulinski Supporting Actor

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    I was under the impression that the FCC does not explicity state what can and cannot be shown on TV. The only time they enforce something like this is when people complain to them If nobody complains, they do nothing. Is this correct?
     
  12. Derek Miner

    Derek Miner Screenwriter

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    Marc, that's somewhat correct. The two watchwords as far as content broadcast on public airwaves are "indecent" and "obscene."

    The FCC's definition of obscene:

     
  13. Ike

    Ike Screenwriter

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    From the FCC:

     
  14. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    I should have known that, Ike! My brain wasn't working when I typed that. :b
     
  15. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Stations around here used to air uncut R-rated movies during prime time, with language and nudity intact. I have off-air recordings of stuff like "My Tutor" shown unedited. The stations stopped eventually because of complaints (but now ruin all their shows with continuous onscreen logos and apparantly that's OK!)
    I remember in 1988 a station in Kansas City was fined by the FCC for showing "Private Lessons" in prime time, which I'd seen on a station here in prime time a couple years before that.
     
  16. Ike

    Ike Screenwriter

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    So, I have to ask-why don't TV stations take advantage of this 10-6 rule? I was unaware of that law. It seems like the networks would want to jump on that and air racy stuff, since that'd certainly have an audience.
     
  17. Wayne Bundrick

    Wayne Bundrick Cinematographer

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  18. Ike

    Ike Screenwriter

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  19. Dan Rudolph

    Dan Rudolph Producer

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    Tits can be used all over and no one thinks anything of it. I'm not sure how that ended up on the dirty word list to begin with.

    As for the other words, I think it's concern over advertizers.
     
  20. Michael St. Clair

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