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TelevisionWeek is teaming up with TV industry veteran Marianne Paskowski. The blog will give Marianne a forum to convey her deep knowledge of the industry and pass along some of the juicy morsels she's hearing on the grapevine. Marianne has covered the TV industry from the inside out and top to bottom, and TVWeek's readers are bound to benefit from her sharp eyes, ears and wit. TVWeek.com invites readers to jump online, chime in and pick Marianne's brain on the latest industry news.

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Marianne Paskowski



So Much for Fox News’ Mantra ‘We Report, You Decide’

June 13, 2008 11:04 AM

Reporters have long quibbled with Fox News Channel brass about its handle, “We Report, You Decide,” with the cable news suits always saying its coverage is not partisan.

Oh yeah? Well, I’ve decided it is partisan, and it’s pro Republican. The cable net has hired as contributors GOP mastermind Karl Rove and now Mike Huckabee, former Republican presidential candidate and former governor of Arkansas.

However, in recent weeks, the network has bent over backwards, having to apologize for remarks said or displayed on-air about the Democratic candidate, Sen. Barack Obama.

First Fox contributor Liz Trotta apologized for joking about Obama being assassinated. The next apology came when Fox anchor E.D. Hill did the mea culpa after describing an affectionate fist bump between Barack and Michelle Obama as a “terrorist fist jab.”

And now the latest apology from Fox is about an on-screen graphic reading, “Outraged liberals: Stop picking on Obama’s baby mama.” The terminology “baby mama” is slang for an unmarried mother of a man’s child.

I’ve decided, so jump in and share your decision here.

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Comments (18)

Cruiser:

Yo, Blondie --

You've just decided that Fox News is in cahoots with Karl Rove and Evil Empire? Where you been?

Fox bias has been so obvious for so many years that its claim to be "fair and balanced" is worse than laughable, it's pitiful. Even worse, Fox people are not just biased, they're rock-hard stupid. Their joking around about Obama, assassinations, baby momas, etc. exposes them as the immature troglodytes (not even adult troglodytes) they are.

And you just decided, in the spirit of "We report, you decide"? Murdoch owes you big time for your patience!

Cruisin not bruisin

A Big Fan:

Cruisin,

When Fox reports about topics other than politics, the network is really good, what a cable news net should be.

Yes, I've been patient, but all of this is too much, so I voted, publicly, that I don't like what Fox is doing. You're a nickname, I am not.

As I write this, I'm thinking about Tim Russert, dead at 58, the most passionate reporter on the Washington beat.

What a shame, so young to be snuffed out. Too bad he 's not around to report on this presidential race.

Marianne

Andy S.:

"I’ve decided, so jump in and share your decision here."

Okay, you've inspired me to get off the fence and say it: I don't think George Bush has done such a great job as president these last seven and a half years. We should maybe think about voting for someone else.

Marianne Paskowski:

Hi Andy,
I made a mistake, I am "A Big Fan," I used that name when responding to the news about Tim Russert, and forgot to change it.

The news of his death rattled me.

The comment I made to Cruising, was from me, Marianne Paskowski.And I stand behind what I said about Fox.

I'm glad to see, all of the cable news networks, covering Tim Russert's death, yes including Fox.

I hope he's happy with the coverage and let's respond our deepest condolences to his family. We all learned a lot from Tim.

Marianne

Joe C:

A few years ago I was working for a news channel,
stationed at a court house in NYC for a big trial
about to start.
A contruction project had just ended in front of the court house, and the road crew was taken away and load them on a truck some of the concrete dividers.
A FOX news crew was there filming, and later that day I watched the FOX report.

The stated how tight the security was in front of the court house, that additional concrete barriers were put into place for that trial.

I witness first hand what was going on, and to
watch that piece on air about security was
Disturbing.

WAY TO GO !!!! FIXED NEWS CHANNEL

Jason:

Marianne,
Sorry, but time get off this horse already. I have some big issues with SOME of the folks on Fox but quite frankly, some of the people are downright great at their jobs too. I have yet to see a better straight up news anchor on cable than Shep Smith, who sticks to the straight and narrow all the time. ED Hill belongs in the same realm as Sean Hannity. She's out in right field most days. BTW, her show just got pulled (no surprise- they've kept pushing into lesser and lesser watched dayparts for the last year). I guess if you're going to do something like this about Fox, why in the hell aren't we seeing a post from you about Chris Matthews or Olbermann, who loves Obama so much I fear for the Senators safety. Its almost sickening as someone who was rooting for Senator Clinton to watch MSNBC because of the way they fall all over him. They may have gained ratings from pro-Obama people, but they lost credibility as a stand up news service. At least those types don't anchor election coverage on Fox. Instead we either get Chris Wallace or Brit Hume, who keep the news and opinion separate. All cable networks have their issues. At least when we got Tim Russert on MSNBC, we got the straight and narrow. Too bad it wasn't near enough and its sad to see him gone. Ya Fox has some conservative nut jobs. Not all the people are though. Obama best not stay away from Fox. Get out of the far left websites. You're better than them.

-Jason

Marianne Paskowski:

Joe,

This spring I was watching Fox, the first net to break the news about a fire in a Los Vegas hotel. They were first, but wrong, reporting that people were trapped on top of the hotel.

Nobody was. Part of the problem was the network was taking some of the feed from local affiliates in the area, and there was probably a lot of confusion.

It's easy to make a mistake and Fox did correct its.
I just hate their political coverage, though.

Thanks for your post,
Marianne

Marianne Paskowski:

Jason,
Just to let you know I can't stand watching Chris Matthews. He shouts and answers all of his own questions. Don't know why anyone would bother being interviewed by him.

I used to like Keith Olbermann, but he went off the reservation a while ago, as far as I'm concerned.

Well, to each his own!
m

Chi-Town Mike:

First and foremost I too am shocked and saddened about the passing of Tim Russert. Whether you liked hom or not I always thought that Tim was a straight shooter and I admired him for his ability to ask the tough questions when other reporters would have buckled under the pressure.

Fox HAD to cover his passing, otherwise it would have left them a very large black eye. (Heck even ESPN covered which teams Russert followed - Especially the Buffalo Bills)

Chi-Town Mike:

(Back on Topic)


I couldn't agree anymore about how Fox is very conservative-biased. I remember an old friend of mine (VERY-Conservative) tried convincing me to read Sean Hannity's "Let Freedom Ring : Winning the War of Liberty over Liberalism". Unfortunately IMO Fox has one show after another that is very conservative biased, and if Barack Obama happens to be our next President you can count on Fox to point out every "hindsight" mistake.


Then again Fox is a business disguised as a network, and will continue to report news that's in the best interest for Fox.

(BTW - I can't stand Chris Matthews either, but at least SNL did many humorous skits about that show in the 90's. Who could forget Chis Matthews played by Dana Carvey constantly screaming "WRONG!!!" at each person talking to him... Classic!!! ) :)

Marianne Paskowski:

Hi Chi,

People are saying that this is the dirtiest political race ever. How quickly we forget, they all are, this one is just in our face right now.

I hate the heard mentality of all cable news networks, they all cover the same events but feel this need to put their unique stamps on the same stuff.

I prefer news and opinion to be labeled, accordingly. With 24 hour cable news nets, there's a lot of air time to fill, so this is what we get.

Happy Monday,
Marianne

As long as Roger Ailes is at the top at FOX, there is no hope for objectivity. They have reported and I have decided...their bias is so far to the Right they have taken themselves out of the reporting business. Why don't they just start sending a monthly invoice to the Republican Party for 24/7, nonstop adverstising?

The untimely and sad death of Tim Russert friday brings attention to the real meaning of objectivity in reporting. His seventeen year example on MEET THE PRESS, separates the reporter-journalists from the Spin Doctors.

That any organization would give Karl Rove a public voice after what he did to us through the Bush Administration should be evidence enough at the real workings of FOX "News". Rove has earned a life-long shunning stemmed only by a major, public apology and baring witness to his many mislead, misdeeds at the White House.

If FOX wants to get in to the reporting business then Roger has to go, Brett Hume needs to rediscover objectivity, Chris Wallace needs a spanking from dad and they need to clean house of many of their so-called anchors and reporters.

Rupert Murdoch, are you listening?
Peter Bright


Marianne Paskowski:

Peter,
Murdoch will never get rid of Ailes. Look at the ratings, that's the headline, I fear.
M

Marianne,

I totally understand the reality of Ailes and Rupert's focus on the greenbacks.

I'm that crazy, cock-eyed optimist who holds out that maybe, just maybe, before he files HIS last editon, that Rupert will put what's really important for this country in front of his ego and dollar stuffed billfold.

Big Picture, Ailes, Murdoch and Rove have to hit their own walls in their own good time. They will, and it won't be pretty.
Peter Bright

Marianne Paskowski:

Peter,
I used to think I was a normal American. Eight years ago I learned I wasn't when the nation elected Bush not once but twice.

I'm also shocked when I'm in a waiting room, or at the gym and see Fox News running on nearly all sets.

My next door neighbor loves it and has never seen MSNBC. And apparently there are many like her, not us.

M

Marianne:

I am not jumping on you as I write, Bush was not elected in 2000. (There was the popular national vote and then there was Jim Baker's weeks in Florida).

I was astounded by 2004's results, not to mention sickened at heart.

You are a normal American. You believe in Truth, Justice and the American Way.

The Truth will out. Believe it, work on it in your own way every day.

Thanks for your column.
Peter Bright

Marianne Paskowski:

Peter,
You're right, he stole the election in 2000, of course. To this day, I don't get why Sen. Kerry didn't call for a recount in Ohio.

I've heard Kerry here in Mass. twice, most recently at the state's Democratic convention. His speeches were so impressive, hard to believe we've been putting up with Bush, the imbecile, all these years.

That says a lot about this country, and it's scary.

Thanks for your posts,
Marianne

Jason:

Hey again,
I know this one's been quiet here for a few days but thought I should share my thoughts with you again. ;)
I loved where you stated about how at the gym you can't understand how Fox is plastered all over the screens. Aside from the fact that you likely live in a much bluer world than I do, I'll tell you why. Fox is the only option out there for conservatives when it comes to TV. Let's be honest, MSNBC is as much if not more in the tank for Obama than Fox is for McCain (had a more conservative person gotten the GOP it would be a different story on many Fox programs). MSNBC's hosts are downright in love with the guy. There simply isn't another place for conservatives to get the conservative point of view than Fox. CNN has been for the most part fair, but is so boring one could never work out to it. That brings up the other point. Every Fox anchor is good looking and almost every show is downright entertaining if only for the trainwreck purposes. This is TV we're talking about. Does quality journalism get sacrificed for ratings? Hell yes. Do the other cable nets do the same thing in their own way? Hell yes. There's babes plastered all over MSNBC too (when they're not airing Matthews, Olby, or the 100th airing of Lockup for the day), and Obama is the hot story, so we see it all day, every day. But do I feel like I'm not getting the most important info of the day when I'm watching these nets? No. Anyone can see if an anchor is biased. The most biased and obnoxious "news" anchors on Fox and MSNBC (not the primetime guys who are paid to be biased) stick out like a sore thumb (Megyn Kelly is the worst). Even us midwesterners who are more likely to be conservative can see that. At the end of the day we all make our own decisions.

Finally, as for Kerry-Bush, it really seems in hindsight like that was a no brainer for Americans, but in 04 Bush had near 50% popularity yet and the country was downright split. Maybe you just need to check your circle of friends. Chances are they're just like you (not that this is bad- mine are like me- afterall, they're our friends).

Love your blog,
Jason

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