VICTORY! As a result of NHMC and GLAAD’s efforts, not only was “José Luis Sin Censura” – a far worse Spanish-language version of Jerry Springer that for several years aired virulent anti-gay, anti-Latino and anti-female content – taken off the air in 2012, but in November 2013 the show’s producing and distributing company agreed to pay a fine to settle an FCC investigation in a historic Consent Decree. The investigation was launched after NHMC and GLAAD filed a joint complaint in February 2011. Click here to view the original 200-page formal FCC complaint
An overview of the more than 18 month-long campaign:
- On November 14, 2013, the FCC announced that Liberman Broadcasting (which distributed and produced)”José Luis Sin Censura” had agreed to pay a $110,000 fine and enter a compliance plan to settle an FCC investigation which found the company was in violation of the FCC’s indecency rules. This marked the first indecency action taken by the FCC since 2010, as well as the first since the Supreme Court questioned the FCC’s indecency policy in 2012. This settlement sent the message that the FCC’s indecency rules will be equally enforced against Spanish and English-language broadcasters.
- On August 8, 2012, José Luis Sin Censura was permanently removed from the broadcast schedule after an 18-month campaign by NHMC and our allies at GLAAD.
- In July 2012, Western Dental pulled advertising from José Luis Sin Censura.
- On June 21, 2012, NHMC and GLAAD announced a campaign to contact national advertisers in a joint press conference at LBI headquarters in Burbank, CA. During the press conference, the organizations also delivered a petition with over 3,800 signatures to LBI.
- Between October 2011 and June 2012, NHMC and GLAAD participated in a dialogue with Rocky Delgadillo, the attorney representing LBI on this matter. NHMC and GLAAD attempted to resolve the matter despite the limited engagement from LBI. In June 2012, Mr. Delgadillo revealed that LBI would stop airing the show on owned and operated stations in late September if NHMC and GLAAD would agree cease their campaign. NHMC and GLAAD declined this offer due to the harm that the continued broadcast of the show was causing to the communities in which it aired.
- On June 17, 2011, NHMC and GLAAD met with the principals of Liberman Broadcasting, Inc.: Chair José Liberman; his son, President and CEO Lenard Liberman; and Chief Operating Officer, Winter Horton. The Libermans own EstrellaTV Network and a number of broadcast stations across the country that air EstrellaTV, including its Los Angeles-based flagship KRCA. While representatives from LBI offered an apology for anti-LGBT content that aired on the show, they did not take immediate action, had no response to other issues raised by NHMC and GLAAD concerning the use of anti-Latino slurs or misogynistic content, and offered no proposals for how to rectify this situation.
- In June 2011, national advertisers including AT&T and Time Warner Cable as well as affiliate stations in Miami, Florida and Wichita, Kansas pulled support for the program.
- In April 2011, more than 30 organizations including the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), the Southern Poverty Law Center, United Church of Christ, and the Women’s Media Center, sent a letter to the FCC, urging swift action.
- On February 28, 2011, NHMC and GLAAD filed the original FCC complaint demonstrating that KRCA (and all of the stations that air “José Luis Sin Censura”) are in violation of federal law. The complaint documented over twenty episodes that aired between June 18 and December 7, 2010, which contains images and language of the nature that is never displayed or is bleeped out of pre-taped English-language programs of the same nature, including the words “pinche” (“f*cking” in English) and “culero” (“assf*cker”), anti-gay language, including epithets such as “puto,” “maricón,” “joto” and “puñal” (or “f*ggot”), anti-Latino slurs, such as “mojado” (“wetback”), and anti-female terms such as “piruja” and “puta” (“whore”). The program frequently features blatant nudity and female guests have been shown in violent fights. Guests and audience members are often incited to engage in verbal and physical attacks. Many episodes show the audience standing and shouting anti-gay epithets and profanity at guests.