TV-station-group owner Pappas Telecasting Cos. has committed to airing at least five minutes of candidate-centered speech per day for the 30 days preceding the general election on its six stations that produce local news, as well as airing "get out the vote" public-service announcements on all 25 of its stations starting now and ending on Election Day.
The formal campaign and per-day minimum are firsts for the group and come in the wake of increased pressure on broadcasters from Washington to boost candidate speech in the run-up to the election.
Senator John McCain, with the moral support of FCC Chairman Michael Powell, has urged broadcasters to do more, with McCain adding that it they don't, he could revive a mandatory free airtime bill.
Pappas stations committing to the coverage are KMPH Fresno, KUVR Reno, KSWT Yuma, KHGI Lincoln, KPTM, Omaha, and KBBC El Paso.
Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.
The smarter way to stay on top of broadcasting and cable industry. Sign up below.
Thank you for signing up to Broadcasting & Cable. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.