Sinclair Broadcast Group Forces Nearly 200 Station Anchors To Read Same Script
Last month, local TV news anchors across the country turned to face the camera and share what appeared to be their personal concerns about journalism. They all had the same concerns.
(SOUNDBITE OF MONTAGE)
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #1: The sharing of bias and false news has become all too common on social media.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #2: On social media. And more alarming, some media outlets publish these same fake…
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #3: Publish these same fake stories without checking facts first.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #4: Unfortunately, some members of the media use their…
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER #5: Use their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda to control…
When I finally got around to this, I did one quick check: Yep, Sinclair Broadcast Group is “Eyewitness News.”
Many years ago, someone noticed how nationwide fads suddenly all got news air time all at once across the country: stranger danger, risky kids’ games (back before the lunatic “YouTube challenge” of the day), abuse of some drug no one ever heard of, whatever. It was quickly noted that these were all “Eyewitness News” stations.
As I recall, someone got to one station rep who freely admitted that they work from suggested news items and scripts provided by a “network.” They were encouraged to scrounge up local stories, then tie them into the designated national public interest crapola. They said it was very common in the news industry, and there are services to provide these little suggestions, that they didn’t just come done from the affiliate broadcast network.
But it’s all coordinated. And scripted. As you see yet again.
Back when I travelled a lot, and watched TV, I would amuse myself by watching the same damned stories with names and serial numbers changed to match the locale. All across the country. That’s just one of many reasons I’ve long taken news — especially television news — with a 50 pound grain of salt.
SO why the hell is this suddenly… news? Again.