TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: CBS Concerned About Profanity on the 9/11 Documentary

CBS Concerned About Profanity on the 9/11 Documentary

Jeremy Pelofsky (
Sat, 09 Sep 2006 12:33:41 -0500

So, they will show it on the web
By Jeremy Pelofsky

CBS Corp. said on Saturday it would broadcast the documentary "9/11"
on the Internet as well as the airwaves after several affiliates said
they would delay or forgo the award-winning film because it includes

The documentary was produced by French filmmakers Gedeon and Jules
Naudet and retired New York firefighter James Hanlon and has aired
twice without incurring fines by U.S. regulators charged with
enforcing broadcast decency standards.

CBS said affiliates that cover about 10 percent of the United States
had decided not broadcast the program or would show it late at night,
citing concerns they could be fined for airing profanity, primarily by
firefighters during the crisis, before 10 p.m.

The American Family Association, which describes itself as a Christian
organization promoting traditional values, has called on CBS stations
to forgo or delay the "9/11" broadcast.

"The online streaming of this broadcast will allow viewers in those
markets to see the Peabody Award-winning special," CBS said in a
statement. The network will air warnings about graphic language.

The film is scheduled to air on Sunday evening at 8 p.m.

Another major U.S. network, ABC, was making last-minute changes to its
two-part September 11-linked miniseries "The Path to 9/11" to air on
Sunday and Monday. Former President Bill Clinton, former aides and
congressional Democrats have lodged complaints that the film
inaccurately suggests Clinton was inattentive to the Islamic militant
threat that led to the September 11 attacks.

The film to air on CBS, narrated by actor Robert De Niro, was compiled
using footage shot inside the north tower of the World Trade Center in
Manhattan after it was hit by a hijacked airliner. No actual carnage
is shown.

An FCC spokeswoman has said the agency only acts on complaints it
receives and the historical context would likely be considered if any
complaints were lodged.

The FCC last year ruled that profanity during ABC's 2004 broadcast of
the World War Two drama "Saving Private Ryan" did not violate decency
rules despite complaints.

Copyright 2006 Reuters Limited.

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