Valley Broadcasting-owned KVBC TV Las Vegas has asked the FCC to investigate three of its competitors, alleging they agreed to supply news coverage of a liquidation sale at an auto dealership as part of an ad buy but did not disclose that per FCC rules.
Auto dealers are one of local stations', and particularly local news', largest advertisers.
A representative of one station and the media buyer cited in the complaint, which handled the buy on all three stations, vigorously denied the allegations. The other stations could not be reached for comment at press time.
In the complaint, a copy of which was supplied by the station's lawyer, KVBC alleged that back in May and June, when a local Dodge dealer, United Dodge Chrysler Jeep, was advertising liquidation sales related to the closing of dealership, network affiliate competitors KLAS (CBS), KTNV (ABC) and KVVU (Fox) inserted ads that looked like interviews into their newscasts--paid for by United--without any notification to viewers that they were paid placements.
If so, that would violate FCC sponsorship identification rules.
Read the full story on broadcastingcable.com here.