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US Television Network and Affiliates Fined for 'Indecent' Broadcast

The U.S. agency that regulates broadcasters has fined ABC television network affiliated stations nearly $1.5 million for indecency.

The Federal Communications Commission says a 2003 broadcast of a police drama, NYPD Blue, that showed multiple close-up views of a woman's nude buttocks was indecent because it depicted a sexual organ on a broadcast before 10:00 p.m.

The network argued unsuccessfully that buttocks are not a sexual organ.

The FCC says the repeated shots were were titillating, pandering and shocking. The agency says it got thousands of letters complaining about the scene.

FCC commissioner Deborah Taylor Tate says if a broadcaster decides to show what the agency has defined as indecent programming, it must air between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. She says the law is not difficult to understand or implement.

ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company.