As soon as Janet Jackson's right breast felt air, you knew the FCC hotline to Michael Powell was buzzing. And even though our current chairman seems content to employ a glacial decision-making process toward the full plate of telecom regulatory issues facing his organization, keeping the nation's broadcasts safe for young eyes calls for "thorough and swift" investigations.
If you're like me, maybe you agree that the obviously planned peep show
was not the most offensive part of yesterday's Super Bowl broadcast. If Chairman Powell really wants to clean up broadcast TV, he'd start by banning all the erectile-dysfunction drug ads. Unless, that is, he's comfortable explaining to his children the pain of some side effects, including those that might last up to four hours long.
Clearly, what's needed here is a separate FCC offshoot to handle the growing number of indecency-rule violations, which the commission clearly sees as a revenue-producing stream with growth potential. Of course, this task might be made easier if Powell's other goal of mass consolidation comes to pass, since there will only be one or two media content providers to monitor.
With a separate indecency-fining outfit, maybe Powell and the FCC could get around to making coherent policy decisions about things that really matter, like Voice over IP regulation or broadband interconnect costs. Then again, since his statement about the Super Bowl halftime doesn't actually mention Janet Jackson by name, perhaps we're incorrect and Powell's really going to fine, impound and imprison the other vocal inanity that sullied our screens during halftime.
In that case, full steam ahead. Sorry to bother you, commish. Keep up the good work!