ABC, CBS, NBC to Air Obama; Fox, No

Apr 27, 2009  •  Post A Comment

Fox has decided not to air President Obama’s first-100-days press conference this Wednesday—the only Big Four network to turn down the White House’s request for time.
ABC, CBS and NBC have all announced plans to carry the president’s appearance. But Fox today said: No go.
“The Fox Broadcasting Company will not air the Presidential News Conference on Wednesday, April 29 at 8:00 PM (ET),” the network said in a release issued Monday afternoon.” Fox’s sister networks, Fox News Channel and the Fox Business Network will air the press conference in its entirety.
Fox will be alerting viewers with an on-screen graphic at the top of the 8:00 PM (ET) hour that the press conference is available on Fox News Channel and the Fox Business Network.”
It’s unusual but not unprecedented for a network to decline to carry a major presidential event. Usually such moves come later in a president’s administration, when networks believe the White House is simply playing politics with its requests.
However, Fox insiders note that the network also turned down President Bush’s November 2001 request to address the nation. The network has also declined to carry several presidential debates.
The CW routinely refuses to cover presidential speeches.
Still, by not carrying the news conference, the Rupert Murdoch-owned Fox risks accusations of partisanship. However, it’s like financial matters—not politics—were key to Fox’s decision.
Pre-empting regular programs can cost networks several million dollars per hour. In the case of Fox, the show that would’ve been pre-empted—”Lie to Me”—is not a major hit. However, it is a young series that has been losing some Nielsen momentum in recent weeks and probably would have been hurt by another pre-emption.
(Editor: Baumann)

26 Comments

  1. I can understand Fox’s viewpoint. They have hurt the momentum themselves over the last couple of weeks.

  2. I think it is a disgrace for the fox channel to decide against showing the President’s press conference on the first 100 days in office.
    I personally feel that they have forgotten that the airwaves that they broadcast on are PUBLIC and that in these days and times, the citizenry should be in tune with what our leader has to say regarding his progress thus far.
    Shame on you Fox. I will be boycotting your sponsers from now on.

  3. Of course it’s Fox. No irony here. However, if they are not airing the event in order to increase ratings it’s probably a good idea because many who are not interested in watching the press conference will look for other programming and find FOX. I’m going out on a limb to say that their hatred for Democrats and Obama has something to do with their decision but that’s my decision. Another part of me says it’s all about the Benjamins.

  4. Of course it’s Fox. No irony here. However, if they are not airing the event in order to increase ratings it’s probably a good idea because many who are not interested in watching the press conference will look for other programming and find FOX. I’m going out on a limb to say that their hatred for Democrats and Obama has something to do with their decision but that’s my decision. Another part of me says it’s all about the Benjamins.

  5. @Sugar, Fox has not forgotten anything. They never understood that basic broadcast tenet in the first place.
    This decision is not surprising; it is just another day at the office for Faux News. It may actually work well for them, if they find that the few people in the nation who are still aligned with Rupert and Co & the Republican fringe start watching the Fox shows in that time slot… but I think that’s a long shot.
    More likely, this is just another vain attempt to position itself as something it is not – as the pendulum of politics swings out of the Fox Noise hemisphere, taking with it the light of citizens interest, we are seeing the approval ratings of the Republican minority shriveling up, and I expect you will see Fox viewership do the same.
    Even if they covered it, the commentators wouldn’t comprehend the message, so I say “Good on ya, Fox” to know when to draw the line at what you are capable of. News coverage is not in their bag of tricks.

  6. @Sugar, Fox has not forgotten anything. They never understood that basic broadcast tenet in the first place.
    This decision is not surprising; it is just another day at the office for Faux News. It may actually work well for them, if they find that the few people in the nation who are still aligned with Rupert and Co & the Republican fringe start watching the Fox shows in that time slot… but I think that’s a long shot.
    More likely, this is just another vain attempt to position itself as something it is not – as the pendulum of politics swings out of the Fox Noise hemisphere, taking with it the light of citizens interest, we are seeing the approval ratings of the Republican minority shriveling up, and I expect you will see Fox viewership do the same.
    Even if they covered it, the commentators wouldn’t comprehend the message, so I say “Good on ya, Fox” to know when to draw the line at what you are capable of. News coverage is not in their bag of tricks.

  7. Good for Fox. Obama is still completely over inflated on his own ego. I bet he doesn’t walk by a mirror without blowing kisses to himself.
    Also, it’s pretty ironic that the show Fox will be airing is titled “Lie to Me”…pretty much the same thing Obama will be doing on the other nets…so it all comes out in the wash.
    When Obama becomes a man of integrity who defends the rights of the unborn over the rights of gays and lesbians, he might be worth tuning into.
    Besides, the guy can’t talk 10 seconds without stammering with at least 15 uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh’s….. And he’s supposed to be a master at speeches??

  8. Kudos Heather! I couldn’t have said it better myself!!! Concerning Obama’s over inflated ego and lack of integrity: what’s the deal with the photo-op over New York city???? Has this administration never heard of 9/11?? Why would this administration waste money on an expensive set up for a photo op?? Oh, I forgot…the Obama administration will just print more money as needed!!!

  9. Works for me. I can watch the conference on several channels, including Fox News, if I choose. If not, I’ve got one more entertainment option available to me.
    Once Presidential addresses in PT transitioned from being a special occasion to a regular occurence, the need for broadcasts nets to automatically carry them also changed.
    Guarantee that the NBC folks are wishing they could leave it to just MSNBC and avoid losing millions of ad dollars.

  10. Not to mention we can watch the conference on You-Tube, HULU or any of the other web-choices later that night if we choose.
    It is, however, unfortunate that the sitting President doesn’t have the clout they used to. Even in GB’s days, he was often ignored by many broadcast outlets. There was a day, not long ago, that ANY Presidential event was covered without question.
    The office just doesn’t have the class or respect it used to in general. And that has nothing to do with the current President, unfortunately it’s been eroding for a long time.

  11. Am I surprised that Fox isn’t airing Obama? No. Do I care? Not at all.
    Will I watch the Obama conference? Nope.
    Do I think Heather is a self-rightous blowhard? Hell, yes.

  12. It’s really the principle of the matter. He’s our president and Fox should have played Obama’s address instead of their stupid show. I never really noticed Obama’s overinflated ego… I think the issue is that he is a president if that’s what you are insinuating Heather. Presidents have to have an air of confidence or the people won’t follow.

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