But only slightly. As Justin Elliot points out at Pro Publica, the job isn't finished.
After a bruising months-long fight between media corporations and the Federal Communications Commission, a government website came online today that will feature political ad data from television stations around the country.
This means that detailed files about political advertising — which show who is buying political ads, how much they are paying, and when the ads are running, among other information — will finally be available online. In the past, those interested in the files, which are by law public, had to travel to stations to get physical copies.
Though the new system is far from perfect, it will likely give the public and journalists a new window into how an expected few billion dollars are spent on political ads on local television this election cycle.
For now, only the affiliates of the top four broadcast networks in the top 50 markets will have to upload their political files to the FCC site. (The Sunlight Foundation has a map of the missing markets here.) All broadcasters will have to start complying in July 2014. And the rule is not retroactive for political ad data — so the site will only have information on political ad buys going forward. ...Pro Publica