Fake TV News Widespread and Undisclosed

From: Center for Media and Democracy

Investigation catches 77 local TV stations presenting corporate PR as real news

Groups file complaint urging FCC to take action against deceptive broadcaster

WASHINGTON The Center for Media Democracy and Free Press today exposed an epidemic of fake news infiltrating local television broadcasts across country. At a press conference in Washington with FCC Commissioner Jonathan S. Adelstein, the groups called for a crackdown on stations that present corporate-sponsored videos as genuine news to an unsuspecting audience.

CMD, which unveiled the results of a 10-month investigation, found scores of local stations slipping commercial “video news releases,” or VNRs, into their regular news programming. The new multimedia report released today includes footage of 36 separate VNRs and their broadcast as “news” by TV stations and networks nationwide, including those in the nation’s biggest markets.

The full report — “Fake TV News: Widespread and Undisclosed” — is now available complete with VNR and TV station video footage at www.prwatch.org/fakenews/execsummary.

“It’s shocking to see how product placement moves secretly unfiltered from the boardroom to the newsroom and then straight into our living rooms,” said Diane Farsetta, a senior researcher at CMD and co-author of the report. ” …

In conjunction with the report, Free Press launched www.freepress.net/fakenews — urging the public to contact the FCC and demand “No Fake News.”

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