President Trump has created this ad to mark his first 100 days in office, but in an odd twist, CNN would not allow him to buy airtime for it. Why? It has a slam against "fake news" in it.

CNN said it would run the 30-second television spot, a celebration of Mr. Trump’s first 100 days in office, only if the campaign removed a section that featured the words “fake news” superimposed over several TV journalists, including Wolf Blitzer of CNN, and others from MSNBC, PBS, ABC and CBS.


CNN defended the decision in a statement on Twitter.


“The mainstream media is not fake news, and therefore the ad is false,” the network said. “Per our policy, it will be accepted only if that graphic is deleted.”


In response, Michael Glassner, the executive director of Mr. Trump’s campaign committee, called the decision “censorship pure and simple.”


“By rejecting our ad, CNN has proven that it supports censorship is biased and fears an opposing point of view,” Mr. Glassner said in a statement. “President Trump’s loyal supporters know the truth: The mainstream media mislead, misguide, deceive, and distract.”

Since a rejection by a network actually makes the news, this ad has now been written up in practically every news outlet instead, which is not bad for earned media. Apart from the "fake news" graphic, the ad is your usual political ad that shows only positive things like busy construction and loving families, while announcing achievements made by this presidency. The unusual part is that this is created in the first 100 days, when you'd usually see this sort of thing at a re-election. I've linked each statement made to a corresponding WhiteHouse.gov announcement, apart from the "fake news" bit because I could not find that on the WhiteHouse.gov website. I honestly expected to.

A respected Supreme Court Justice confirmed. Companies investing in American jobs again. America becoming more energy independent. Regulations that kill American jobs eliminated. The biggest tax cut plan in history.

After all this chest beating, the VO concludes that: "America is winning, and President Trump is making America great again."

Client: White House

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about the author

Dabitch Creative Director, CEO, hell-raising sweetheart and editor of Adland. Globetrotting Swede who has lived and worked in New York, London, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm.

Comments (1)

  • Dabitch's picture
    Dabitch

    Here is CNN's official statement for rejecting the ad, wherein CNN takes on the job of the FCC, checking what is false advertising at the door. I'm fine with that if they want that responsibility. If they allow any other false ads in the future can this statement be used against them in a suit? IANAL but yes.

    May 04, 2017

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