On Thursday, the Federal Communications Commission reached a handful of settlements with media outlets following investigations into whether or not they misused the emergency alert system tone.
The company discovered that ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live!, AMC’s The Walking Dead, Animal Planet’s Lone Star Law, and Meruelo Radio Holdings all misused the emergency alert system (EAS) tone, a sound that’s blasted out to tv and smartphones to warn individuals of emergencies like tornadoes, floods, and lacking kids. The firms have agreed to pay a complete of greater than $600,000 in civil penalties for the violations.
The FCC has a rule towards utilizing the tone exterior of precise emergencies to “protect the integrity” of the system. That means, listeners aren’t confused when there’s an precise emergency that warrants the alert.
“We remain concerned about the misuse of the EAS codes and EAS and WEA Attention Signals, or simulations thereof, to capture audience attention during advertisements; dramatic, entertainment, and educational programs, and at any other time that there is no genuine alert,” the company’s enforcement bureau stated in a press release. “The FCC may issue sanctions for such violations, including, but not limited to, monetary forfeitures.”
Each program performed the alert at the least as soon as. For instance, Jimmy Kimmel’s present used it three completely different instances in a comedy sketch. An Animal Planet crew recorded an actual alert when filming throughout Hurricane Harvey in Texas, which was then rebroadcast in an episode of Lone Star Law.
Outside of the financial penalties, the businesses additionally agreed to what the company referred to as “a strict compliance plan” to verify the alerts aren’t performed except warranted once more.