Originally published: April 26, 2012
Last updated: April 26, 2012 - 7:00pm
There’s a behind-the-scenes political battle in North Carolina this year, but chances are you will not hear about it on TV. That’s because this fight is about TV. It pits broadcasters, the people who operate television stations, against public interest groups. The forum: The Federal Communications Commission, the FCC, the people who license broadcasters. At issue: Whether television stations should be required to post ad contracts online that show how much candidates and political committees including the new so-called “superPAC’s” are spending on TV ads. Most television newsrooms avoid the issue. It certainly hits close to home and poses an inherent conflict of interest. Political advertisers help to pay the salaries of the employees of television newsrooms. And broadcast operators have hired lobbyists to fight proposed new regulation pending before the FCC which would force broadcasters to take their political ad costs out of paper files and make them available on the internet for the world to see.
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