The National Association of Broadcasters wants the FCC to believe that their members are really suffering financially, losing money at an alarming rate.

The goal of the NAB is to convince the feds they should be allowed to consolidate even more media outlets under the same corporate banner.

And to make it all seem real the Association has devised a “new creative bookkeeping technique that might even make the accountants from Enron blush”.

There’s just one problem with NAB’s argument: Nearly all broadcasters, small to large, are raking in cash at rates that make most every other industry look sickly by comparison. The profit rate at many television stations is 40 percent or higher. It is one of the most profitable businesses around.

So, how can the NAB say that the stations are money pits?

Easy. They only included the odd numbered years in their computations.

In the even numbered years (like this one) revenues go through the roof due to advertising from political campaigns and, to a lesser extent, the Olympic games.

And with all the extra demand for ad spots, they can also charge their regular customers even more. Nice plan.

If the FCC buys this story, I guess we really do need to work on better math education. Or better ethics training.

nab, big media, advertising