Question

George Carlin, a ­satiric humorist, recorded a 12 minute monologue called “Filthy Words.” He began by referring to his thoughts about “the words you couldn’t say on the public airwaves” and then proceeded to list those words, repeating them over and over again in a variety of colloquialisms. At about 2: 00 in the afternoon, a New York radio station, owned by Pacifica Foundation (Pacifica), broadcast Carlin’s “Filthy Words” monologue. A father who heard the broadcast while driving with his young son filed a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), a federal administrative agency charged with regulating broadcasting. The Federal Communications Act forbids the use of “any obscene, indecent, or profane language by means of radio communications.” The FCC issued an order granting the complaint, and it informed Pacifica that the order would be considered in future licensing decisions involving Pacifica. Is the FCC regulation legal? Federal Communications Commission v. Pacifica Foundation, 438 U. S. 726, 98 S. Ct. 3026, 1978 U. S. Lexis 135 (Supreme Court of the United States)


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  • CreatedAugust 12, 2015
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