Fox News Apologizes for Airing NSFW Ariana Grande Song (Video)

Fox News Apologizes for Airing NSFW Ariana Grande Song (Video)

The talk show said “thank u, next” to long-held standards around cursing on daytime television

Lindsey Ellefson

Fox News Media/Getty Images

Fox News often plays contemporary music as its shows fade into commercial breaks, but on Tuesday’s “Outnumbered,” one such instance involved some NSFW language.

“So apparently we did not have the clean version of the Ariana Grande song at the end of the last block,” newly minted co-host Kayleigh McEnany said as “Outnumbered” returned from a commercial break. “We apologize for that to our viewers.”

The apology came after the show played the unedited version of Ariana Grande’s 2018 chart-topping hit “Thank U, Next.” In the song, Grande thanks her previous boyfriends for teaching her about love and preparing her for a better relationship down the line. In the chorus, she repeatedly sings, “I’m so f—ing grateful for my ex” — a lyric that was heard twice on Fox News on Tuesday.

In total, the studio version of the single includes the f-bomb seven times in three minutes and 27 seconds, so it was notable that the few-second bump on Tuesday managed to include two of those instances.

FCC rules about cursing on television are varied and contradictory, which the commission admits on its government website: “Federal law prohibits obscene, indecent and profane content from being broadcast on the radio or TV. That may seem clear enough, but determining what obscene, indecent and profane mean can be difficult, depending on who you talk to.”

“Factors in determining how FCC rules apply include the specific nature of the content, the time of day it was broadcast and the context in which the broadcast took place,” the site reads, in outlining what could actually earn a network like Fox News a reprimand or fine. “Broadcasting obscene content is prohibited by law at all times of the day. Indecent and profane content are prohibited on broadcast TV and radio between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., when there is a reasonable risk that children may be in the audience.”

Though “Outnumbered” airs at noon each day, it’s on cable, not broadcast, so you can see where the rules get murky. A representative for the FCC did not immediately return a request for comment, nor did representatives for Grande.

Check out the clips from today’s episode of “Outnumbered” below, first flagged by the Daily Beast’s Justin Baragona. But be warned: they include NSFW language.

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