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Letter: Fox News 'rest of the story' often untrue

Published January 27, 2014 8:35 am
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Don Swaby ("Fox News tells the rest of the story," Forum, Jan. 21) couldn't be more wrong in his assertion that Fox News presents "the rest of the story." Look at the facts.

In Jane Akre vs. Fox News, Akre won her case as a "whistleblower" after being fired for refusing to broadcast a story she knew to be false. However, that verdict was overturned by the Florida appeals court because Florida's whistleblower law states that an employer must violate an adopted "law, rule, or regulation."

In its interpretation of FCC rules, the court ruled the FCC policy against falsification of the news was not a "law, rule, or regulation," it was simply a "policy." Therefore, it is up to the station whether or not it wants to report "honestly."

During its appeal, Fox attorneys asserted there are no written rules against distorting news in the media. They argued that, under the First Amendment, broadcasters have the right to "lie" or "deliberately distort" news reports on public airwaves.

So, we get untrue stories of $2 billion presidential trips (involving 34 warships) presented as "news." And, perhaps that is why studies (University of Maryland) have consistently shown Fox viewers to be the most "misinformed."

Larry LaCroix





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