An appeal over singer Janet Jackson's "wardrobe malfunction" and brief partial nudity on national television has reached the Supreme Court, the latest free speech episode over indecent, if fleeting, images and words on the public airwaves.

The Obama administration has asked the Supreme Court to decide whether record government fines against CBS should be allowed to stand.

A federal appeals court last November ruled for the network and its affiliates, saying the Federal Communications Commission's sanctions were improper. The agency had punished the network with a $550,000 fine after the pop singer's breast was briefly exposed during a live halftime show with fellow entertainer Justin Timberlake at the 2004 Super Bowl.