Fox News repeatedly criticized a SpongeBob SquarePants book and video about manmade global warming because "they did not tell kids that that is actually a disputed fact." In reality, it is not controversial among the mainstream scientific community that humans are changing the climate.
Fox News' The Five seized on Alabama's controversial new immigration law to repeat the myths that the Obama administration is not enforcing immigration law; that illegal immigration is increasing; and that the E-Verify program, which allows employers to automatically check the immigration status of newly hired employees through government databases, works.
After the announcement that a compromise between Congressional Republicans, Democrats and the White House on ending the default crisis had been made, Fox News overwhelmingly hosted Republican lawmakers to provide analysis on the deal. In its coverage following the announcement, Fox News hosted over three times as many Republicans as Democrats to discuss the issue.
FoxNews.com has stopped posting videos for Fox News Watch's "Behind the Breaks" segments, which featured panelists' discussions during the program's commercial breaks.
The online-only segment seemed to only gain attention when it embarrassed Fox News. Indeed, FoxNews.com's last update - for its July 9 program - featured panelists admitting they weren't going "to touch" the hacking scandal involving their parent company News Corp. The video drew notice here and overseas as Fox's coverage of the controversy about its parent company drew scrutiny (perhaps due to the attention, Fox News Watch subsequently covered the story).
Since the notice over its "Behind the Breaks" video about the hacking scandal, however, FoxNews.com hasn't posted any further videos. Fox News Watch's website used to feature a section for the videos (under the "Most Recent Video" tab):
The July 20 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom included a segment on recent recommendations from the Institute of Medicine that listed eight categories of women's health care, including contraceptives, that should be classified as preventive services and therefore available under the health care reform law without co-pays or cost-sharing.
Not surprisingly, Fox's Heather Childers framed the story as being about whether the government should be involved in women's reproductive health.
But the segment took a particularly vicious and personal tone when Fox News contributor and vice president of Family-PAC Federal, Sandy Rios, attacked IOM recommendation supporter Dr. Cathleen London, calling her "a disgrace to our gender."
Rios criticized London as "a true feminist who makes no sense" and continued to display her own anti-woman agenda by proposing to "let women stop having irresponsible sex. ... Let's stop making excuses and providing a way to get women out of trouble when they should be responsible in their behavior."
Childers also jumped in agreed with Rios that it's "not too much to ask for everyone to stop having irresponsible sex."
With an unusually intense heat wave sweeping the nation, Fox News has been silent on global warming, which scientists say makes heat waves like this one more likely. By contrast, Fox News repeatedly used winter storms to mock global warming -- one of several problems with Fox's coverage of climate change highlighted in a new mini-documentary by Media Matters Studios:
Most flagrantly, Fox Nation and Fox News personalities Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Gretchen Carlson, Steve Doocy, Stuart Varney, and Eric Bolling all seized upon the February 2010 blizzard to mock Al Gore and suggest that the storm undermines the science supporting global warming. That same winter, Fox News Washington managing editor Bill Sammon ordered the network's journalists to cast doubt on climate change data.
In reality, that winter included "the eighth warmest December" since records began in 1880, the "fourth warmest" January, and the "sixth warmest" February according to global temperature data from NOAA. 2010 tied for the warmest year on record, and 2000-2009 was by far the warmest decade on record.
Over the past week, Fox News has not mentioned human-induced climate change or global warming while reporting on or discussing the current heat wave, according to a search of Snapstream video and Nexis transcripts.
The Washington Post reported that this "long duration, widespread heat wave continues to bake virtually the entire central U.S" and "969 daily high temperature records were either tied or broken in the country" through July 16. The Post further reported:
Climate change research indicates that manmade emissions of greenhouse gases may already be increasing the likelihood of extreme heat events like this one, including the 2003 European heat wave that killed tens of thousands. Also, recent studies have projected much hotter summers beginning as soon as just a few decades from now as the climate continues to warm. However, it will take months if not years for scientists to determine whether climate change has played a role in turning up the heat so far this summer, and in this heat wave specifically.
NASA climatologist Gavin Schmidt told Media Matters it's "very probable that any particular heat wave happening now will be shown to have become more likely because of global warming," adding: "Of all the different extreme events that can happen, the partial attribution of heat waves to ongoing climate change is one of the easier connections."
Fox News has aggressively supported a Republican plan to add a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution. However, progressive and conservative experts alike have made clear that a balanced budget amendment would make future recessions worse and damage the current recovery.
David Carr writes today in the New York Times about several instances of News Corp. paying large settlements in response to lawsuits filed by companies in the U.S. In particular the Times notes a complaint from a company called Floorgraphics, against News America Marketing, a News Corp. subsidiary that does in-store and newspaper insert advertising.
In 2009, a federal case in New Jersey brought by a company called Floorgraphics went to trial, accusing News America of, wait for it, hacking its way into Floorgraphics's password protected computer system.
The complaint summed up the ethos of News America nicely, saying it had "illegally accessed plaintiff's computer system and obtained proprietary information" and "disseminated false, misleading and malicious information about the plaintiff."
The complaint stated that the breach was traced to an I.P. address registered to News America and that after the break-in, Floorgraphics lost contracts from Safeway, Winn-Dixie and Piggly Wiggly.
Much of the lawsuit was based on the testimony of Robert Emmel, a former News America executive who had become a whistle-blower. After a few days of testimony, the News Corporation had heard enough. It settled with Floorgraphics for $29.5 million and then, days later, bought it, even though it reportedly had sales of less than $1 million.
Carr also documents that News America paid $125 million to Insignia Systems to "settle allegations of anticompetitive behavior and violations of antitrust laws." News America also settled a lawsuit with Valassis Communications "in exchange for $500 million and an agreement to cooperate on certain ventures going forward."
The executive in charge of News America at this time was Paul V. Carlucci, who reportedly described those uncomfortable with the company's aggressive sales philosophy as "bed wetting liberals." Carlucci is currently the publisher of the New York Post and continues to be in charge of News America.
As Media Matters first noted, Fox News' media criticism program, Fox News Watch, avoided any mention of the scandal over the British tabloid News of the World and its publisher News Corp., which also owns Fox News. And in a video posted on FoxNews.com, panelists appeared to admit during a commercial break that they were intentionally avoiding the topic.
FoxNews.com posts "Behind the breaks" videos featuring panelists' discussions during Fox News Watch's commercial breaks. In one, Fox News contributor Cal Thomas asks, "Anybody want to bring up the subject we're not talking about today" and adds, "I'm not going to touch it."
In a report for CNN's The Situation Room last night, reporter Brian Todd "confirmed" that "they were talking about" the hacking scandal. On the topic of Fox News, Todd also reported that overall, the channel has addressed the scandal but "not as much as other news networks."
Here's video and CNN.com's transcript of the segment:
In a series of segments called 10 Ways to Save the Economy, Fox News' Special Report with Bret Baier promoted conservative talking points on the financial crisis, stimulus package, estate tax, and deregulation. The segments also frequently echoed the viewpoint of Fox News' conservative opinion programming. None of the ten segments advocated measures favored by progressives to help the economy.
Earlier today, MSNBC indefinitely suspended political analyst Mark Halperin for unacceptable comments after the Time editor-at-large called President Obama a dick.
This is how responsible news organizations behave.
Perhaps Fox Nation should worry more about the obscenity that is permitted at Fox.
That's not accountability. That's Fox News.
Following a series of increasingly hostile public exchanges between Fox News and Glenn Beck's camp, Beck's "transition" off of Fox was announced on April 6. Fox recently confirmed that Beck's final show will take place on June 30.
Glenn Beck's Fox News exit is the result of a decline in revenue, ratings and relevance.
More than 300 advertisers excluded their ads from Glenn Beck's Fox News program since late July 2009 when he called President Obama a "racist" who has a "deep-seated hatred for white people." In February 2010, the UK broadcast of Glenn Beck's show began running without any commercials due to advertiser losses abroad.
Subsequent to news of Beck's departure, The New York Times reported that Fox News saw "the refusal of hundreds Fox advertisers" to place ads on Beck as an issue. This issue was recently highlighted when a Fox News spokeswoman, commenting on Fox's decision to preempt Beck's show for a sex scandal special, reportedly quipped that "at least we will be able to sell the special."
A financial analysis of Glenn Beck's advertiser losses illustrates two points:
The number of paid advertisements on Glenn Beck's Fox News show dramatically declined once advertisers began boycotting it in August 2009. Sustained pressure on advertisers ensured that Beck's show never recovered. Consequently, Glenn Beck's show consistently fell short of other comparable Fox News shows as well as shows of direct competitors:
Source: Industry data obtained from CMAG and analyzed by Media Matters.
Further, based on estimated costs from industry experts CMAG, a Media Matters analysis revealed that the same ad from the same advertiser cost substantially less on Glenn Beck than it does on other comparable Fox News shows:
As immigration reform has re-entered the public debate, Fox News has spent the past several weeks misleading on the issue and slanting its news coverage to paint immigrants in a negative light.
Fox News has been touting an outdated survey in order to falsely claim that a national polling firm says that Fox "is the most trusted television news source in the country."
In recent press releases -- including one sent out today announcing the hiring of Ed Henry as the channel's chief White House correspondent -- Fox has made the following claim:
FOX News Channel (FNC) is a 24-hour all-encompassing news service dedicated to delivering breaking news as well as political and business news. A top five cable network, FNC has been the most watched news channel in the country for nearly ten years and according to Public Policy Polling, is the most trusted television news source in the country. Owned by News Corp., FNC is available in more than 90 million homes and dominates the cable news landscape, routinely notching the top ten programs in the genre.
It's true that in January 2010 -- a year-and-a-half ago -- Public Policy Polling released a survey saying that respondents trusted Fox News more than any other outlet the pollster asked about. In that poll, 49 percent of respondents said they trusted Fox News, compared to 37 percent who distrusted it.
But that doesn't mean Fox is still the most trusted news outlet. "They are touting the 2010 version of that poll when the 2011 version of the poll came out differently," says Tom Jensen, the director of PPP.
Indeed, PPP published a new installment of the poll in January 2011 -- with very different results. This time, PPP found that PBS -- which wasn't included in the 2010 poll -- was by far the most trusted outlet. Fifty percent of respondents said they trust PBS, while only 30 percent said they distrust PBS. Meanwhile, trust in Fox dropped to 42 percent, while distrust of Fox increased to 46 percent.
From PPP's write-up of the January 2011 results: