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Companies fined for using emergency alert tone for a movie trailer

The movie 'Olympus has Fallen' caused a panic with a lot of people as the trailer with the two-tone emergency alert aired in multiple channels
By Roshan Ashraf Shaikh from Mar 4, 2014 @ 20:14 CST

The FCC was not too happy when they found out that the Emergency Alert System was used in a Movie trailer 'Olympus has Fallen' about an attack. Viacom, NBC Universal and ESPN was slapped with a $1.9 million fine for running this trailer. The trailer was aired on multiple channels with the two-tone emergency signal. Because of the trailer being shown in more than one channels, people felt that it was misleading and were not happy about it.




One the complaints read,"This is misleading and had our entire family running to the TV to find out what was going on, only to find it was a commercial". FCC added that 'Frivolous, casual, or other uses of EAS Tones for reasons other than their defined purpose can desensitize viewers to the tones and thereby undermine the effectiveness of the system in the event of an actual emergency.'


All the three companies have acknowledged that they have approved the video since it was consistent with its guidelines. FCC pointed out that the companies have revised its guidelines that it will ban material which contains real or simulated alert tones, but FCC is imposing a fine as the violations was done multiple times at the same time. NBC Universal needs to cough out $530,000, and ESPN will be fined for $280,000. Viacom will have to pay a fine of $1.12 Million.


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