Major media outlets fight FCC on ads

Groups take stand on product placement

The MPAA, the parent companies of the Big Four nets and other biz heavyweights have told the Federal Communications Commission that there’s no need for new disclosure rules regarding product placement on the smallscreen.

In a joint filing responding to a recent FCC request for public comments on the issue, 18 major media concerns argued that existing disclosure requirements, which have been in place for decades, are sufficient and well established. The group’s filing asserted that product placement has a long history in TV and that, if anything, more product placement is needed to allow nets to offset declining profit margins.

“The recent increase in the use of product placement is a necessary response to the tremendous changes in the media environment,” the group said. “Advertiser-supported media face greater challenges in the emerging ‘on demand’ world, and product placement is an important part of preserving free or advertiser-supported media among the choices available to consumers.”

On-demand services, they added, threaten the viability of traditional TV commercials.

Adopting new disclosure rules “would create significant jurisdictional and constitutional problems,” the group said in the filing.