The Fox News Channel has come under fire for what some of its critics say is unbalanced coverage of the big sexual harassment stories that have been making headlines, the AP reports.
“Bill O’Reilly and Harvey Weinstein are the celebrity faces of sexual harassment in 2017. But on Fox News Channel, O’Reilly’s former home, the Hollywood mogul’s fall has gotten far more coverage,” the AP reports. “Fox has devoted more than twelve and a half hours of airtime to Weinstein since Oct. 5, when The New York Times broke the story about his misconduct, according to the liberal media watchdog Media Matters for America.”
By comparison, the group said Fox has spent only 20 minutes, 46 seconds on allegations against O’Reilly since they were revealed in The Times back in April.
“A news organization’s instinct to downplay a story that reflects poorly on itself isn’t unusual,” the report notes. “But in this case, some are attributing the disparity to politics. Weinstein has long been a supporter of liberal causes, while O’Reilly is a hero to many on the right, for whom Fox is the network of choice.”
The report adds: “Fox lawyers, wary of investigations into the network’s conduct, may well have urged it to minimize its discussion of O’Reilly. The network would not discuss its coverage decisions.”