FCC fires back at networks

FCC fires back at networks 1The FCC insisted Wednesday that Cher’s “F-word” at the Billboard Music Awards justified a citation.

Fox’s live broadcasts of the 2002 and 2003 Billboard Music Awards shows contained “indecent and profane” language, and FCC regulators were justified in citing them for indecency violations, attorneys for the agency argued in court papers filed Wednesday afternoon.

They also charged Fox and two other nets involved in the legal challenge — CBS and NBC — with trying to “change the subject” in their court papers filed two weeks ago.

On one of the broadcasts, Cher said “fuck ’em” to critics who’ve claimed for years that her career was over. On the other, Nicole Richie said, “Have you ever tried to get cow shit out of a Prada purse? It’s not so fucking simple.”

The nets argued that, by citing the broadcasts for indecency violations, the FCC was overstepping its authority and also departing, without explanation, from a previously restrained approach to policing the airwaves — one that didn’t penalize for “fleeting” expletives in a live setting.