The Amp is just as surprised as you are that this case was still in the legal system: A U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today that CBS does not have to fork over $550,000 for Janet Jackson's infamous indecent exposure during the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show. The case has jumped from Court of Appeals to the Supreme Court and back again since 2004 as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) attempted to make CBS pay for exposing hundreds of millions of people to a fleeting glimpse of Jackson's right breast. Today, however, the sage has (maybe) come to an end as this court decided the FCC acted "arbitrarily and capriciously" by levying such a large fine against the network, Reuters reports.
Nipplegate was a big deal seven-and-a-half years ago, but similar instances seem to happen on live television on a monthly basis, most recently Nancy Grace's unfortunate wardrobe mishap on Dancing With the Stars. In those situations, networks aren't forced to pay half-million dollar fines, but Dancing With the Stars isn't exactly a worldwide event like the Super Bowl either. It might have avoided a $550,000 fine, but Jackson's oops did have one lasting effect on the NFL: Since 2004, the Super Bowl has avoided any more of those unpredictable all-star medleys and have instead handed the halftime show to safe rockers like Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, and Prince (and his phallic guitar).
[Photo: Kevin Mazur/WireImage.com]