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Indecency Rises Again on Capitol Hill

Expect more talk about broadcast content later this month. Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, plans to hold an "Open Forum on Decency" on Nov. 29. Representatives from cable, broadcast and other content industries are expected to attend.

A time and location for the forum will be announced later, the committee said.

Meanwhile, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) weighed in on indecency at a Kaiser Family Foundation event in Washington, D.C., where he warned TV to clean up its act.

Obama was on hand for the release of the Foundation's fourth biennial TV content study, which indicated that sex scenes had doubled since 1998. Researchers analyzed 1,000 hours of programming on ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, Fox, The WB, PBS, Lifetime, TNT, USA and HBO and found that sex scenes increased from 1,930 to 3,783.

More recently, indecency complaints at the FCC also shot up. In Q3 '05, according to a report from the FCC Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau, indecency/obscenity complaints against radio and television broadcasting leapt from 6,161 in Q2 to 26,185 in the three months ending Sept. 30.
(Radio World contributed to this report)(/I>