advertising, Affordable Care Act, biased reporting, Channel 4, Conservatives, educating, Fox News, Intermountain West, Kristine Frazao, KRNV, NBC, NBC News, News, Obamacare, PR, RT, Russian Television, Sinclair Broadcasting Group
The lead news story for Wednesday night on Reno’s NBC affiliate, KRNV was anti-government attack on the Affordable Care Act. The story was attempting to stir up outrage on the advertising budget to promote the new program that will impact millions of uninsured Americans.
The only opinions offered were in opposition to money being spent for advertising without any attempt to find an authoritative source to offer an explanation for why the public needed awareness of the new program. In fact, the only independent source on the story, David Williams, CEO of the anti-government organization, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance, suggested that taxpayer money should not be used to educate or promote the Affordable Care Act. He stated:
“This isn’t Coca Cola or Pepsi, this is healthcare, they shouldn’t be advertising…”
The $17 million per month spent to educate American citizens on a program to directly benefit them was about $2 million less per month than the coal, oil, and gas industry spent during the first eight months of 2012 to promote drilling and/or oppose clean energy.
Reporter From Russian Television
As confusing as the Fox News-type slant of the lead story, was the person reporting it. The reporter was not an employee of the local KRNV station, nor was the story generated by the parent NBC News organization. The reporter was Kristine Frazao, the National Correspondent for the Sinclair Broadcast Group, which consists of 167 television stations, of which approximately half (88) are Fox, CW, or MyTV affiliated stations.
According to a November 2013 article in Broadcast & Cable (B&C,) Sinclair does not own KRNV, but did purchase three other stations of the Intermountain West group excluding KRNV and the Las Vegas affiliate, KSNV. Sinclair has, according to the story, agreed to operate and provide services for the Reno NBC affiliate.
However, Frazao is new to the Sinclair Broadcast Group. Prior to this year, Frazao spent three years with Russian Television (RT.) Russian Television began broadcasting in the United States in 2005, and its website states that RT:
“…acquaints international audience with the Russian viewpoint.”
Frazao is known for her anti-government reporting and as a reporter in San Diego was criticized for asking a Comic Con attendee why she and the other attendees weren’t protesting in Washington, D.C. against the government rather than coming to the southern California for the science fiction convention.
KRNV On The Conservative Side?
Frazao’s anti-Obamacare report was likely well received by conservatives in Northern Nevada and perhaps that is why Reno’s local NBC affiliate has taken on a Fox News attitude in reporting. Recently, KRNV changed its tag line from “Where News Comes First” to “On Your Side.” That explains many things about Wednesday’s lead news story.
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Donald Miller said:
I saw the same story but wasn’t there a liberal radio host who said “isn’t it worth spending the money if it will help save lives?” I thought the story was pretty balanced.
Paul Kiser said:
Donald, if you believe that Fox News is ‘balanced’ then I can understand why you feel that this story is balanced.
However, anyone can go out and interview people on one side of the issue (like Fox News) and call it ‘balanced.’ To do that is pure ignorance of what ‘balanced’ means.
In many countries there is no ‘Defense’ for accused because the assumption is made that if you’re accused you are guilty. Our country was based on the idea that justice involves listening to both sides of the story, especially the accused. In this case, the people given the job to educate people on the Affordable Care Act have used television and radio to reach 360 million people in over a thousand different markets. That seems like a prudent use of money, but that part of the story was never reported.
There are many people, possibly yourself included, that believe the government is evil and should be destroyed. Those people are wrong. As a citizen of this country it is our obligation to pay taxes as payment for the privilege of living here. The idea that we have all the roads we’ll ever need, there will be no more fires, police protection is not needed, no more schools need to be built, and no one needs to research how we can make things better for our children is a stupid position…unless you love Putin, because that is exactly what he would like Americans to believe.
Paul George said:
I worked for one of Reno’s news stations last year. Much of the decision making is done by consultants with a view to gaining a larger market share. For example, the morning news is targeted to stay-at-home mothers in their 30s. So marketing segmentation has more value to most of these stations than news. I can’t get the KRNV video to load, but KRNV should have provided a counter point to the anti-Obamacare interview. Of course, the government has advertised its programs since World War I, maybe the reporter should have started with that.
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