Deadline reports that recent FCC filings by the networks try to make the case that, between cable and the Internet, the Big 4 are not really the cultural influencers they once were.
“Americans today, including children, spend more time engaged with non-broadcast channels delivered by cable and satellite television, the Internet, video games and other media than they do with broadcast media,” reads a filing by FOX.
While NBC argues to the FCC that “Broadcast TV is not a uniquely pervasive presence in the lives of 21st Century Americans,” pointing to stats that show network TV only accounted for 28% of TV viewing during the 2010-2011 season, while basic cable accounted for 53%.
And good ol’ CBS sat on its veranda, whittling and lamenting that “the day when a child watching television was almost certain to be watching broadcast television has long since passed.”
Broadcasters did win a minor victory in 2010, when a federal appeals court struck down the FCC rules against unscripted expletives. And in spite of hand-wringing from groups like the Parents Television Council, live TV has not turned into a profane orgy of F-bombs and nipple slips, though that might help the ratings if they tried it.