by Mike Masnick
Thu, Aug 5th 2010 12:17pm
We recently wrote about the Second Circuit appeals court ruling that the FCC's policy against "fleeting expletives" on broadcast TV was ruled unconstitutional, and that's now raising some other questions as well. A separate case, also in the same circuit, involves the question of whether or not a similar policy over "fleeting nudity" is equally problematic. As you may recall, the show NYPD Blue got a ton of attention back in 2003, for showing 7-seconds of a bare backside (which apparently was once the top rated clip on YouTube, despite it happening a few years before YouTube even existed). The FCC used a similar "fleeting nudity" policy to threaten to fine ABC affiliates for airing the show. However, the court in that case is now asking whether or not the recent ruling over expletives has any bearing on the question over nudity. Of course, you could question how "fleeting" it is for a filmed drama (as compared to the expletives, which were live events). But, at the same time, the wide availability of that same video (and, um, a ton of other much more graphic videos) to anyone with a computer might raise questions about why it even matters?
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