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Bill would prevent indecency fines against cable

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    News Media Update         WASHINGTON, D.C.         Broadcasting         April 4, 2005    

Bill would prevent indecency fines against cable

  • The “Stamp Out Censorship Act” would counter attempts to regulate programming beyond broadcast television.

April 4, 2005 — The Federal Communications Commission would be prohibited from slapping indecency fines on cable and satellite television and the Internet, under a bill introduced by Rep. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

Nonpublic broadcasts such as those on cable and satellite television and the Internet are not now subject to indecency regulation. Sanders wants to keep it that way by preventing the FCC from penalizing indecency aired by “providers of video over cable television systems, satellite carriers, the Internet” or nonbroadcast providers, according to the”Stamp Out Censorship Act of 2005,”introduced March 17.

Sanders spoke against the “Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act of 2005,” which would raise broadcast indecency fines. The “specter of censorship is growing in America today, and we have got to stand firmly in opposition to it,” Sanders said on the House floor in February. “What America is about is not necessarily liking what you have to say or agreeing with you, but it is your right to say it.”

Reps. Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii), Rick Boucher (D-Va.), Jim McDermott (D-Wash.), Ron Paul (R-Texas) and Diane Watson (D-Calif.) are cosponsoring the bill, which was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

(H.R. 1440, The Stamp Out Censorship Act of 2005)AB

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