Names in the news, Nov. 3

Posted Nov. 02, 2011, at 5:09 p.m.

In the latest court battle over the steamy 2004 Super Bowl halftime show, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that CBS should not be fined $550,000 for Janet Jackson’s infamous “wardrobe malfunction.” The 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals held its ground even after the U.S. Supreme Court ordered a review after its ruling in a related Fox television case. In that case, the high court said the Federal Communications Commission could threaten fines over the use of even a single curse word uttered on live TV. But Circuit Judge Marjorie Rendell said the Fox case only “fortifies our opinion” that the FCC was wrong to fine CBS over the halftime show. The Fox case ruling involved rock star Bono’s use of profanity on the Golden Globe Awards show the prior year. An FCC enforcement bureau had called it a fleeting, nonsexual utterance and declined to issue a fine. The full commission reversed the ruling in March 2004 but declined to issue a fine because it would have been allowed under the prior standard. In the Janet Jackson case, Justin Timberlake ripped off Jackson’s bustier, exposing her breast for nine-sixteenths of a second. It was explained as a “wardrobe malfunction.” … The Christian Post reports that controversial Christian leader Harold Camping has retired after three failed doomsday predictions. The self-styled biblical scholar based in Oakland, Calif., has thrice predicted the world’s end. First, in 1994. Then, on May 21 of this year. And again on Oct. 21. Camping’s staff estimates that more than $100 million has been spent trying to wake the world up to his predictions. However, the world did not end, though many of his followers reportedly sold all their belongings and turned their savings accounts over to the church.

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