Clear Channel Puts Money Where Love Sponge’s Mouth Was


Clear Channel Communications Inc. is sticking to its new policy of appeasing Washington. The radio giant wrote a $755,000 check to cover a Federal Communications Commission fine for indecent broadcasts by shock DJ Bubba the Love Sponge.

Bubba, whose real name is Todd Clem, was fired last month. The fine was levied for various routines on his program, including a parody with cartoon characters talking about sex and a breast-implant-surgery contest.

The FCC fine works out to the $27,500 maximum times 26 instances, plus an extra $40,000 for some reporting omissions.

Clear Channel has since dropped syndicated shocker Howard Stern and said it will fire any DJ or on-air personality the FCC decides has violated government indecency restrictions. And the company is rewriting contracts with on-air personalities to make them liable for a portion of any indecency fine they cause.

"We fully accept our responsibility for airing inappropriate content, and our company will accept the consequences," says Clear Channel Radio CEO John Hogan, explaining the company’s decision not to challenge the proposed fine.

Clear Channel "does not want to be associated with indecency," says Hogan. "We know we can deliver great radio without compromising our integrity."