For Immediate Release: February 21, 2012
Contact: Kathleen Hall Jamieson, 215.898.9400 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Jamieson is director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.
Penn’s Annenberg Public Policy Center’s FlackCheck.org Launches “Stand by Your Ad” to Fight Deception in Super PAC and Other Third Party Political Advertising
TV and radio stations are required to air political ads by candidates for such federal offices as the presidency even if their content is blatantly deceptive. Not so the messages of outside groups. Instead, broadcasters have the right to bar so called “third party” ads or insist on the accuracy of those they decide to air. Ohio stations did just that when a group called “Building a Better Ohio” offered Ohio TV stations a deceptive ad last October. (To see the ad they rejected, go here.)
In the hope that local broadcasters around the country will follow the lead of these Ohio stations, APPC’s FlackCheck.org, the sister-site of the award-winning FactCheck.org, is calling on them to insist on the accuracy of ads by super PACs, the political parties and all of the other outside groups that arrive at their doorsteps with cash in hand. In service of this goal, the project urges those in local markets to applaud responsible station action and decry business-as-usual.
To assist station managers and viewers, FlackCheck.org’s “Stand By Your Ad” page is both flagging deceptive presidential ads in primary and caucus states and identifying the stations airing them. To make it easier for viewers to send words of encouragement or dismay to station managers, the FlackCheck.org “Stand By Your Ad” initiative provides them with the names of station managers, the e-mail addresses of stations and a sample letter that can be amended and sent directly from the viewer’s account.
“We urge broadcasters to insist on the accuracy of the third party ads, not just for the presidency, but across the board,” said Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center. “We hope that stations will take the same care in screening out deceptions in the political ads of outside groups that they take in protecting their viewers from problematic product ads.”
To locate the FlackCheck.org “Stand By Your Ad” page, click http://www.flackcheck.org/stand-by-your-ad/ and then click on “Stations.”