The Supreme Court will hear a challenge from America's major broadcast networks that questions the FCC's ability to fine broadcasters for so-called "fleeting expletives" heard during live broadcasts. The highest court said this morning it would schedule the case for the fall.

Fox Broadcasting filed the challenge along with ABC, CBS and NBC. The case is specific to the FCC's fining of Fox for two broadcasts of the "Billboard Music Awards." NBC has a similar case pending that stems from U2 singer Bono uttering the F-word during the 2003 Golden Globe Awards while CBS is challenge the commission's fining it for Janet Jackson's famous "wardrobe malfunction" during the Super Bowl halftime show in February 2004.

A New York federal court ruled against the FCC's authority to enforce the profanity rule and the commission has appealed the case.

"I am pleased the Supreme Court will review the Second Circuit's decision in Fox vs. FCC," FCC chairman Kevin Martin said, responding to the court's decision to hear the case. "The Commission, Congress and, most importantly, parents understand that protecting our children is our greatest responsibility. I continue to believe we have an obligation then to enforce laws restricting indecent language on television and radio when children are in the audience."

NAB executive VP Dennis Wharton said his group was also happy that the Supreme Court accepted the case. "NAB is pleased the Supreme Court has agreed to review this case, and that Justices will provide badly needed clarity to both broadcasters and policymakers on this critically-important First Amendment case. We're confident that whatever the outcome of this case, local radio and television stations will be mindful of broadcasting's long history of providing programming that will reflect and respect the audiences that we serve."