Under FCC rules, broadcasters are barred from mimicking the warning system "to avoid confusion when the tones are used, alert fatigue among listeners, and false activation".
On Thursday, ABC agreed to pay $395,000 to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission after a Jimmy Kimmel Live! skit poking fun of President Trump replicated the alert tone three times during a broadcast in October previous year.
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"The Commission has repeatedly warned that the use of simulated or actual EAS Tones for non-authorized purposes - such as commercial or entertainment purposes - can lead to risky "alert fatigue" whereby the public becomes desensitized to the alerts, questioning whether the alerts are for a real, imminent threat", it read.
Jimmy Kimmel's show was not the only program found guilty of such misuse. "The FCC's rules prohibit such broadcasting of EAS tones - including simulations of them - except during actual emergencies, authorized tests or authorized public service announcements".
The ABC network's late-night talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live! has gotten itself into some trouble.
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The government agency said that by using the tone three times in an October 3, 2018 sketch - originally meant to mock Trump's nationwide presidential alert released that day - Kimmel and ABC created a "serious public safety concern" that could reduce the tone's effectiveness in the event of an "actual emergency". The crew was filming Texas Game Wardens following Hurricane Harvey and caught the tone of a real wireless alert received by phones during filming.
Animal Planet was fined $68,000 for a misuse of the tone in "Lone Star Law".
As part of the trial, more than 200 million United States mobile phones received a test "Presidential Alert" notification. The show doesn't miss an opportunity to poke fun at America's current Commander-in-Chief Donald Trump, however, the show's use of a presidential alert test tone has cost them big.
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Meanwhile, Discovery and Meruelo Radio Holdings were also hit with smaller fines for broadcasting the tones.