FCC Proposes $10,000 Fine Against CBS' V101.9/Charlotte
August 21, 2012 at 7:47 PM (PT)
The FCC has proposed a $10,000 fine against CBS RADIO HOLDINGS, INC. for contest violations at Urban AC WBAV (V101.9)/CHARLOTTE. The problem arose with the station's 2011 "CAROLINA Cuties" contest, a baby picture competition, and involved conflicting information from the station regarding the contest voting deadline that a complainant said "deterred public participation through voting and unfairly compromised her child’s chances of winning."
The station admitted that its staff posted the wrong information on the station website and in emails but denied that it did not conduct the contest substantially as announced or advertised, but the Commission disagreed, saying that "CBS staff misinformed the voting public and the Contest’s finalists about the dates when voting would conclude and when the grand prize winner would be announced.... although CBS’s on air announcements technically covered the Contest’s material terms, CBS failed to conduct the Contest substantially in accordance with those announcements, in violation of the rule. The Station’s website and e-mail announcements conflicted with its broadcast announcements, thus confusing and misleading the public with respect to how the contest would be conducted.... Far from supplementing the broadcast announcements, the Station’s contradictory announcements undermined the conduct of the Contest."
The FCC is also proposing a $13,000 fine against J&J BROADCASTING, INC., licensee of Adult Hits WIMI (99.7 THE STORM) and Classic Country WJMS-A (REAL COUNTRY US 59)/IRONWOOD, MI, for public file and ownership notification violations at the station. The station's files were missing five quarterly issues/programs lists, and the Commission said that its registration files for WIMI's tower had not been updated by notification of a change in ownership in 2010.
In addition, ALBERT KNIGHTEN has been fined $1,200 for operating unlicensed DUNBAR COMMUNITY RADIO on 107.5 FM in FORT MYERS, FL. KNIGHTEN admitted to running the station but pleaded financial hardship, and the Commission reduced his fine from $15,000 as a result.
And the Commission dismissed as moot an application for another extension of time for COX ENTERPRISES; CALVARY, INC.; BONNEVILLE; SCRANTON TIMES LP; and MORRIS COMMUNICATIONS to file amendments to pending waiver requests or renewal applications or to file requests for permanent waivers of the newspaper/broadcast cross-ownership rule. The parties had been granted several such extensions, but with the Supreme Court denying all petitions for certiorari in the cross-ownership appeal, the Commission now says that the parties' requests and applications are now due SEPTEMBER 27th.