FCC Fines LPTV Station for Ads Posing as News

The Federal Communications Commission has fined a low-power TV station $60,000 for palming off paid appearances as information appearances, violating the company’s sponsorship identification guidelines.The FCC’s Media Bureau entered right into a consent decree earlier this month with Reynolds Media over segments in what was presupposed to be a information and public affairs program on Reynolds Media’s K26GS-D Harrison, Arkansas.Broadcasters should disclose on-air the sponsors of any paid programming, however in keeping with the FCC, numerous political candidates and spokespeople for business entities paid to be interviewed on the present weren’t recognized as such.”When broadcasters air paid-for programming with out disclosing this system’s sponsor, they will mislead the general public,” the FCC mentioned.The FCC mentioned that Reynolds offered advert packages within the present — Down on the Corner, subsequently renamed The Morning Show — which included candidate or spokesperson interviews. The present aired twice every day.The FCC mentioned the station even printed up a flyer that pitched candidates a $1,500 advert bundle that included a private, dwell interview on the present. Some candidates took it up on the provide. Reynolds didn’t embody any sponsorship ID. Reynolds charged spokespeople $30 per look to advertise their entities or interview executives on the present, once more with out disclosing they had been paid-for appearances.“Reynolds conflated paid content material with information, info, and public affairs programming,” the Media Bureau mentioned. “In doing so, Reynolds misled the general public.”Reynolds is hardly the primary station to run afoul of the FCC’s sponsorship guidelines or which has pitched paid appearances on purported information and public affairs packages, from a Las Vegas full energy planting a McDonald’s espresso mug on an anchor desk, to a Chattanooga station that offered flattering “information” tales for $15,000 a pop. This article initially appeared on TV Tech sister model Broadcasting & Cable. 


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