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Transparency Comes to the World of Political Advertising...If You Can Read the Data

  • FCC to require radio and cable to put political ad data online
  • Change follows similar requirement for TV stations since 2012
Donald Trump speaks in Iowa City, Iowa, on Jan. 26, 2016.

Donald Trump speaks in Iowa City, Iowa, on Jan. 26, 2016.

Radio stations and cable TV will soon need to disclose online the political ad spending of Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and other candidates -- but don’t expect instant clarity.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission on Thursday is set to bring other media in line with broadcast television, which began disclosing political spending online during the last presidential election campaign. The proposed order, backed by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, includes satellite TV and is expected to be approved.