Super Bowl Half-Time Show Controversy Prompts Apologies From NBC & NFL
The Parents Television Council this morning criticized NBC and NFL over the Super Bowl halftime show incident involving British rapper M.I.A. briefly flashing a middle finger in front of the camera before the network was able to blur the image. The watchdog called for NBC and NFL to punish those responsible for the flap but stopped short of announcing the filing of a formal complaint with the FCC. At least for now. Here is the statement from PTC president Tim Winter:
“NBC fumbled and the NFL lied because a performer known as M.I.A. felt it necessary to flip off millions of families. It is unfortunate that a spectacular sporting event was overshadowed once again by broadcasting the selfish acts of a desperate performer.
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Eight years after Janet Jackson’s infamous “wardrobe malfunction,” the Super Bowl half-time show has produced another controversy. During tonight’s show, headlined by Madonna, one of the guest singers, British rapper M.I.A., gave viewers the finger directly into the camera and NBC’s censors weren’t fast enough to obscure it. The network, which carries the Super Bowl this year, attempted to blur the gesture but was late by almost a second. “We apologize for the inappropriate gesture that aired during halftime,” the network’s spokesperson said. “It was a spontaneous gesture that our delay system caught late.” NBC also noted that it is the NFL and not the network that hires and produces the halftime show. The NFL used srronger language in its statement, putting the blame for the accident squarely on its broadcast partner. “There was a failure in NBC’s delay system,” the league said. “The obscene gesture in the performance was completely inappropriate, very disappointing, and we apologize to our fans.” M.I.A., who according to accounts was PG during rehearsals, also seemed to drop an expletive (“I don’t give a s**t”) during the performance, but it wasn’t clearly audible. The incident is bound to bring back into the spotlight the “fleeting expletive” debate, which reached all the way to the Supreme Court. It may trigger a prolonged legal battle for the NBC stations — the Janet Jackson case was finally put to rest a couple of months ago after multiple rounds … Read More »