Why NBC, CBS, Fox and The Washington Post Want Election Ad Spending Data Kept Secret

MItt Romney Super PAC Ad

Photo: Priorities USA

The National Association of Broadcasters is appealing an FCC rule that would require the TV networks to post information about political ad budgets online.Political adspend information—like the cost and buyer—has been recorded by TV stations for years, but only on paper forms. The forms are virtually secret—the only way to get them is to visit each individual station and request copies.

The FCC wants it digitized and online as early as July.

The broadcasters hate the new rule because they believe it would make TV ad buying more transparent. By law, stations must give their lowest ad rates to political candidates—and they don’t want corporate advertisers finding out just how low those rates can go.

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