Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Fake News and the Feds

The Washington Post reported today that the FCC has FINALLY launched an investigation into broadcasters who air unattributed video news releases as straight news. The investigation was prompted by Center for Media and Democracy study released in April that found that 77 stations had aired without proper labeling video news releases (or what the center calls “fake news”) produced by General Motors, Master Foods, Pfizer, and Panasonic among other companies. Lucky for the White House, fake news-makers are off the hook. Last year a New York Times report revealed that the White House paid to produce public relations spots for its initiatives and gave them to television stations, many of which aired them as news broadcasts. You can read all about fake news and other horrifying PR-age scandals at the Center for Media and Democracy's PR Watch.

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