The Very First Amendment Encyclopedia

The Very First Amendment Encyclopedia

Presented by the John Seigenthaler Chair of Excellence in First Amendment Studies

Broadcast surprise jock Howard Stern, right, speaks at a rally in nyc’s Dag Hammerskjold Plaza on 24, 1987, where more than 2,000 people showed their support after the FCC censured Stern’s off-color broadcasts april. The rally ended up being broadcast survive two radio stations, WXRK-FM in ny and WYSP-FM in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Howard Stern (1954– ), among the paid that is highest and a lot of controversial radio characters in the us, has regularly pressed the boundaries of great taste and First Amendment free phrase liberties in the general public airwaves. He has received battles that are ongoing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which regulates broadcasting, and contains received more fines from the FCC than every other radio character.

Created in Queens, ny, Stern began their radio job at WTBU, the student section at Boston University, where he attained a BA in 1976. Then he worked at channels in nyc, Detroit, Connecticut, and Washington, D.C., rapidly developing a reputation as being a “shock jock,” a DJ whom utilizes intimate and innuendo that is scatological interest a mass market.

Stern a figure that is controversial

Throughout their profession Stern is criticized for remarks which were considered to cougar life app iphone be racist or perhaps inappropriate. In 1985 he along with his staff had been fired from NewYork City’s WNBC once they aired a skit“bestiality that is enh2d.” Into the early 1990s the FCC imposed an excellent of $600,000 on Infinity Broadcasting, which in turn carried Stern’s program, after Stern aired a conversation involving Aunt Jemima and masturbation. A number of their remarks following the Columbine senior school massacre in Colorado in 1999 brought a formal censure from the Colorado state legislature. In 2004 Clear Channel Communications “indefinitely suspended” Stern in six radio markets after he aired an intimate and dialogue that is racist.

If the FCC cracked down on which it considered indecency when you look at the news after Janet Jackson’s Super Bowl “wardrobe breakdown,” Stern was certainly one of its earliest goals. In April 2004 the FCC fined Clear Channel $500,000; following this the organization said it might forever end its dealings with Stern. In however, he returned to four of the six markets from which he had been suspended earlier that year july.

Stern discovers space that is safe satellite radio

In January 2006 Stern started to broadcast exclusively on Sirius Satellite broadcast under a five-year agreement. Because of the differ from terrestrial radio to your unregulated satellite broadcast channels, Stern ended up being beyond the reach of this FCC’s regulations and its own increased fines.


Holohan, Matthew C. “Politics, tech, and Indecency: Rethinking Broadcast Regulation within the twenty-first Century.” Berkeley Technology Law Journal 20 (2005): 341–369.


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