Friday, December 9, 2011

How Much Control Does A Television Station Have Over The Content Of Political Ads?

When a legally qualified candidate for public office airs a spot, the candidate is protected by the “no-censorship” provision of the Communications Act. The television station is not allowed to revise the spot in any way, nor can it remove the spot for any reason. The stations are immune from libel and defamation liability. Political issue ads that do not feature the candidate do not fall under the “no-censorship” provision. Therefore, the station is obligated to screen the ad to ensure sources support the message.

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