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ABC shuts Adam Lambert out of 'Kimmel': Is the FCC to blame?

That naughty American Music Awards performance isn't going to be behind Adam Lambert anytime soon.

Even after his well-received performance on "The Early Show" last week, ABC continues to feel uncomfortable around Lambert. His Dec. 17 "Jimmy Kimmel Live" appearance was canceled today--news Lambert himself delivered on his Twitter page an hour ago.

The performance on Kimmel's live stage was scheduled before Lambert made his now infamous debut on the AMAs on Nov. 22.  In one of his tweets about the matter, Lambert told his fans not to blame ABC but rather "It's the FCC heat."

It's not clear whether ABC told Lambert to put the blame there or if the "American Idol" runner-up is making his own assumptions. But we do know the following: The FCC doesn't monitor programming after 10 p.m. Don't believe us? The following is an excerpt from its website:

"The FCC has determined, with the approval of the courts, that there is a reasonable risk that children will be in the audience from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., local time. Therefore, the FCC prohibits station licensees from broadcasting indecent material during that period.

"Material is indecent if, in context, it depicts or describes sexual or excretory organs or activities in terms patently offensive as measured by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium...The 'safe harbor' refers to the time period between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., local time. During this time period, a station may air indecent and/or profane material."

We are not saying Lambert is indecent, but, either way, it's been deemed OK for him to be after 10 p.m. (His AMA appearance, by the way, aired at 10:55 p.m.).

In a statement to The Times, an ABC spokeswoman made no mention of the FCC and would only explain the network's decision to disinvite Lambert from performing on "Kimmel" as follows, "We decided not to move forward with the booking at this time." ABC declined to be interviewed about the issue.

You will recall that ABC also disinvited Lambert from "Good Morning America" last week.  And to just make it a dissing trifecta, Lambert also tweeted that he was disinvited from performing on "New Year's Rockin' Eve." Sources at Dick Clark Productions, however, tell us those plans were never finalized.

Lambert assured his fans he will still appear on "The Jay Leno Show" and he thinks "it'll all blow over."

Do you?

--Maria Elena Fernandez

--Photo: Lambert at the AMAs; Credit: Associated Press


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Comments () | Archives (196)

I hope that other artists have the backbone to refuse these cancelled time slots. I will enthusiastically support any artist who does refuse, and I will not support any artist who occupies the vacancy. I doubt I'm alone.

1) After 10pm local time doesn't mean Eastern.

2) The performance was apparently cancelled due to a personal incident and will be rescheduled next year.

I am so bored with this self-indulgent, narcissisitic ninny and the constant drama he creates to draw attention away from his grating personality, annoying cruise ship stage presence, and extremely annoying voice.

ABC isn't the only network in the world, so who cares if they don't want Adam on?

Bottom line, if ABC books Adam Lambert in the future, he's going to show up, and he won't pull the "shenanigans" that he pulled at the AMAs. Bottom line. Define "shenanigans" however you want, but a blow was dealt, and he's feeling the effects.

And for the record, Adam's performance may have aired at 10:55 p.m. eastern time, but that was 9:55 central.

Regardless of anyone's feelings about it - and I don't care how many albums he sold in his one-week debut - this cannot feel good. He needs numerous fans outside of the AI bubble, and this isn't the way to do it.

No one's talking about his music, and truly, that's what he needs them to be talking about right now.

Please go to abc.com and complain about this ban. I'm sure we can put in more than 1500 complaints!

they don't mind having,Chris Brown on ! ( oh, he only try to kill is girlfriend )
are they not worried he will reach out and touch someone ???? no matter, ABC
needs a BLACK EYE !!!!! go ADAM !!!!

Are you kidding me? ABC just lost yet another viewer! Only good show on that channel is Modern Family. What a double standard! You rock ADAM! He has shown nothing but grace and contrition since his AMA performance on all other shows. ABC isn't the only game in town. I believe CBS blew GMA out of the water in ratings when Adam was on. Since when have we become the morality police? It was 11pm at night! Get over yourselves!


I am a fan of Adam Lambert. I have read everything I could find on this and am being objective.

The AMA's were rated tv-14 = parents strongly cautioned- sorry parents you were warned. Today's technology provides you with parental controls and V chip - so you why didn't you use it?

Pink's 2004 performance was not aired. Fox used the delay technology and it was not shown on air. This technology is used extensively in tv and radio. ABC failed to utilize standard industry procedures. They tried to pan away but aain - they failed to use standard industry procedures. The Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction is still being reviewed by the FCC. The Liberty Council Group filed a complaint with the FCC siting not only indecency but also obscenity. There is no safety harbor for obscenity. However, FCC's definitions indicate that it is designed for hard-core pornography - which his appearance was not. It seems to me that ABC should be furious with Janet Jackson for grabbing the crotch of a male dancer in the opening number but no one is saying a word about this. It can be argued that ABC knew the contact of Adam Lambert's performance by the way they promoted it at every commercial break. As a broadcaster ABC is ultimately responsible for what is aired. Again - they failed to use industry standard technology that was in use a minimum of five years earlier while currently being reviewed by the FCC. Their reaction is classic transferance in phsycology = they are angry at themselves for not using standards and like a child are pointing the finger at Adam Lambert and using him as a scapegoat. Someone's job is on the line and I am willing to bet it is Ms. Sweeney. When they cancelled GMA they sited that Lambert was unpredictible on live tv. Since then, he has several live appearances without incident. At the latest cancellation they gave no real reason.

A large majority of Adam Lambert's fans are middle aged women - read discretionary income - family vacation planning -

ABC smarten up before its too late - boycotting your stations will hurt your sponsors - selling off investments will hurt your bottom line - remember hell has no furry like an angry woman LOL

I support Adam 100% and look forward to seeing him perform wherever I can. As quickly as ABC cancels a performance then another network books him, so I think that sends a message to ABC. People want to see Adam, his music is outstanding, his voice is beyond compare and his energy is amazing and catchy.

This isn't censorship but retribution on ABC's part. Adam didn't play by their rules and they are trying to make sure he pays for it. They used him to get publicity for the awards show and didn't employ the nine second delay they had on the show because they knew he would be controversial. When they got heat for it they are used him for a scapegoat. Even after he has promised no more such performances on the network ABC/Disney (not the FCC) continues to punish him.
All of this is really a shame because Adam is very talented and his CD, For Your Entertainment, is very good. It is certainly one I would recommend to people. I hope the public rallies around Adam and makes him such a success that ABC will be begging to have him on the network. But I think he would be too good a person to tell them "No" and he should.

I feel sorry for the more tolerant, open-minded, updated and generally reasonable people of America.

The performance was reported on outside of America, then the GMA ban and now the subsequent ban, and the image that the rest of the world has of America being a generally outdated, closed-minded and intolerant society is being confounded to the point that America has become a laughing stock among the vast majority of people who have heard about this.

Congratulations, ABC! God bless America .................... indeed with excuses such yourself passing for a TV station, she sure needs all the divine intervention she can get.


I know Adam doesn't want us to be mad at ABC but there comes a time when the unfairness is beyond unfair. Look at any article on the internet about Adam and read the comments sections. Homophobia is rampant in this nation and ABC is also running scared of the gay guy. I wish Adam had gotten on that stage and just sang a great song and blew the roof off the place with his vocals. Instead he chose to throw his gayness out there for all to see. Sometimes he's too gutsy and this was one of those times. It should have been about his voice and that's why I'm disappointed in Adam's performance. ABC is going too far with Adam because he didn't reign his gayness in enough. What a shame.

Adam Lambert is probably one of the nicest people you'd want to meet, and he doesn't beat up people like some artists ABC has allowed on their network after cancelling Adam. Is real violence okay for ABC...better than someone getting into a "character" to interpret the lyrics of a song? If ABC is going to punish someone for this, then there are many more artists who need to be in that lineup.

I didn't watch Pink, but if I had I would have reported her too to the FCC.
I did see Adam and I reported him to the FCC. My wish is that he would never be on tv to be seen again. Some of you think that we should love Adam, no matter what. I can love the person, but not his actions.

Well, golly gee whizzo. I live my pathetic life on-line and watching the toob and now I cannot see any slutty performance I want at will? What is this, free TV? Hasn't some pay-for-view picked him up yet that I don't subscribe to or care about? Actually I don't care about ABC either cuz my rabbit ear digital antenna doesn't get them. Oh, well, everyone is so disgusted on someone's preference that maybe his CD sales will only be 3 million and not 3.1 million. Maybe he will have to buy a cheaper leather pantsuit? Or maybe he can buy up one of N. Cage's extra homes for a spare closet?

I wish I could be aghast the LA Times would make such an obvious blunder but I'd like to point out a 10:55pm performance runs at 9:55pm in the Central Time Zone.

Since the FCC considers *local* time, as you quoted, viewers in the Central Time Zone would've seen him before the 10pm safe harbor.

Inexcusable - canceling the shows after the tickets were distributed? I had my ticket and the day off was approved.
This vendetta/revenge has to stop for logic's sake! The Rodent is out to get the Lamb and this time there is not even an excuse for it. It's because they can. and there is nothing you can do about it. AMA's were a one-time, late-night faux pause and the punishment is far exceeding the "crime". So now that ABC is known as AdamBashingChannel, they are totally blocked at my house. As soon as I can figure out how to give them my 2 cents, I will. I look forward to Adam staying strong, gracious, eloquent and for many more years of entertainment.

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