Home / News Articles / FCC Fines WCIU-TV $16.5K Over Pokemon Characters Appearing in Ads
A Chicago TV station got burned by limited-edition Pokemon Eggo waffles and kicked by Fruit by the Foot. The Federal Communications Commission Friday proposed fining the station, WCIU-TV, $16,500 for a series of violations of its limits on commercials during kids’ TV shows, including six program-length commercials.

Chicago Station Aired Ads for Limited-Edition Pokemon Eggo Waffles, General Mills 'Fruit by the Foot'

The FCC said any appearance of a character from a TV show in a commercial placed within that show turns the whole program into a commercial.

Six of those program-length commercials involved Pokemon, but let's let the FCC's Media Bureau, with some help from the station, describe it: "The licensee stated that on four occasions, the station aired a commercial for Eggo waffles containing ‘fleeting images’ of a Pokemon character during the Pokemon program," the bureau said in its notice proposing the fine.

"According to the licensee’s description, a Pokemon character appeared during the commercial and transformed 'into an embossed image of itself on several Eggo waffles' while the announcer stated, 'And look out for limited-edition Pokemon Eggo waffles,’” the Media Bureau continued. “‘You can catch ‘em all.' Further, the licensee reported that on two occasions, the station aired a commercial for a General Mills 'Fruit by the Foot' product containing a 'fleeting appearance' by a Pokemon character during the Pokemon program.”

The station argued that the appearances were fleeting, minor, would not have harmed a child viewer and didn't turn the shows into commercials. The FCC disagreed.
Source: http://www.broadcastingcable.com