Essay On Indecency

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Indecency seems to be the biggest category for debate in the field of broadcasting. What is defined as indecency? The FCC has defined broadcast indecency as "language or material that, in context, depicts or describes, in terms patently offensive as measured by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium, sexual or excretory organs or activities” (). This definition can be interpreted in many ways. This is why there is so much controversy over what is labeled as indecent and what is not, thus causing a “freezing effect” on cable and broadcast networks. The problem is that the Commission is in charge of enforcing these prohibitions by means of radio communications. Historically, this was interpreted to apply only to radio and …show more content…
It is pretty obvious that cable networks have more freedom when it comes to displaying indecent material. In the older days there was no cable, so there had to be rules for broadcasting to protect the eyes and ears of minors. Now that cable is more common, this leads to the question of whether or not the same rules should apply. As stated before, cable is subscription based. You only get certain channels that you pay for, therefore you have more control. Moreover, what is the major difference between cable and broadcast networks? “The real difference between broadcast television and cable is not that the Federal Communications Commission restricts one from doing what the other can. It 's a matter of cosmology -- the way they perceive the universe. Cable TV and broadcast TV purvey different worlds, and cable 's is darker, bleaker, more complicated and less forgiving” (Gabler, 2010). Broadcasting networks believed that the difference between them and cable networks was a matter of indecent exposure, excessive language allowance, and obscene content, which made the broadcasting networks desire this “freedom” because they were having a hard time competing with cable (Gabler, 2010). They thought that by being allowed to say and do what they want without worrying about the law, they would have more viewers. Naturally, broadcasters have tested this law to see what they could get away with. It usually doesn’t end

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