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Monday, November 14, 2016

Dave Chappelle Follow-Up

Yesterday, in my post about Dave Chappelle's "SNL" monologue, I predicted that NBC would edit out certain words before it was broadcast on the West Coast. I haven't seen confirmation of that anywhere, but at least one affiliate in the Eastern time zone censored Chappelle's monologue. According to Variety, the control room operator at WRAL/Raleigh, which airs "SNL" on a ten-second delay, hit the dump button several times -- but didn't do a very good job of it and missed a few of the words they probably didn't want to get through.

As I wrote earlier this year when CBS similarly censored a single word from a live Steven Colbert show, this wasn't a case of worrying about trouble with the FCC, because both broadcasts air during the "safe harbor" hours. Besides, even outside of the "safe harbor," NBC would have been okay because none of the words Chapelle said are on the FCC's semi-official banned language list. However, any TV or radio station or network has every right to cut out any content it feels violates its own standards.

Incidentally, the video I posted was from the official NBC "SNL" YouTube feed -- and is as uncensored here as it was when the network broadcast it live on Saturday night. Same with this one, another clever skit about the election outcome, with a guest appearance by Chris Rock...