The Senate Commerce Committee is planning an "open forum" Nov. 29 to discuss indecent content aired on television, as a first step in crafting legislation to limit such material.


WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Senate Commerce Committee is planning an "open forum" Nov. 29 to discuss indecent content aired on television, as a first step in crafting legislation to limit such material.

Committee chairman Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, is calling for the forum that will include "television broadcasters, cable companies and content providers," according to the committee announcement.

The House has approved legislation to raise fines to as much as $500,000 for violators. The Senate has not acted, although a similar measure passed last year but ground to a halt in conference.

Stevens is the most prominent lawmaker to express a belief that satellite and cable programming should provide better protections to prevent children from watching fare with violence and sexual content. In recent months, he has steered a more moderate course toward self-regulation in those industries.