Tired of Polluter TV Spots? There’s an App for That

If you live in a political swing state, you’ve probably noticed the barrage of political ads being sponsored by oil, gas, and coal companies.

Wealthy polluters are pouring unprecedented millions into advertisements in an effort to influence this election. Ordinary Americans who care about conservation and wildlife may not have the deep pockets of polluters, but they are speaking out.

Just this week, NWF’s Campus Ecology Program released a report: A Student’s Guide to How Corporate Oil, Gas and Coal Money Influences U.S. Energy Policy. Which is about—you guessed it—how polluters have bought their way to the front of the line on Capitol Hill. The effort is teamed up with Energy Action Coalition’sPower Vote,” which aims to register youth and first time voters who want a say in our energy future.

Checking the Ads

Anyone who watches Mad Men knows advertisers are plugged into our psychology. How do we know what the truth is? Political transparency has become an issue on more and more radar screens, especially after Citizens United v. FEC. But how can you find out the truth during this election cycle? You’re in luck, there’s an app for that.

It’s called the SuperPACApp, and is available for iPhone users. It’s the Shazam for political advertisements. The phone listens to the ad and within seconds reports on:

  1. What group funded the ad;
  2. How much it costs and
  3. Information on the accuracy of the ad.

This app makes the unprecedented spending on political advertisements more transparent—allowing the viewer to gain clarity on what they are actually watching and where it is coming from.

So the next time your eyes start glazing over after yet another attack ad, break out your iPhone. But be careful, you might find yourself looking forward to the next commercial break, just not for the reasons the oil industry wants you to.

Here are some other great resources that peel back the curtain on dirty money: