FCC Won't Reduce Fines on Viacom, ESPN Over EAS Misuse

Companies had sought reduction in penalties
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The FCC has refused to reduce the fines it proposed against Viacom and ESPN for misuse of the emergency alert system.

The penalties stem from an ad the three aired repeatedly for the film Olympus Has Fallen that included Emergency Alerts System warning tones that are only supposed to be used in a real emergency.

All three companies (NBCU was cited, too) initially contested their liability for airing the tones in the movie trailer, but the FCC cited a spike in consumer complaints about simulated or actual EAS tones and said that it prohibited their use in other than emergency situations, in part for the "cry wolf" element of desensitizing viewers to the importance of real tones.

For the full story go to Multichannel.com.