The public backlash against the hideous rhetoric of Fox News seems to be causing some discomfort and consternation in the executive suites. CEO Suzanne Scott now wants it to be a tad less hideous.
Yesterday, Politico reported that Scott recently held a meeting with the network’s top producers in an effort to crack down on the numerous incidents, such as Corey Lewandowski’s “Womp, womp” and Laura Ingraham likening child detention centers to summer camps, that have cost the network advertising dollars and prompted some talent at other Fox divisions to speak out against FNC.
Those incidents, according to Politico, prompted Scott to require copy about children to be scripted in advance and reviewed before airing. She's also requiring producers to push back, which host Sandra Smith did not do in the now-infamous "womp, womp" segment.
At the meeting, Scott emphasized to producers that, if something incendiary is said on their show, it is their job to get in the host’s ear and make sure they push back in the moment, according to the people familiar with the meeting.
I’m certainly glad that Fox News is uncomfortable with its image of late. But sensationalized hate mongering is Fox’s stock in trade. An unidentified former producer summed up the situation for Politico:
“The management hired these people knowing fullwell what they’re doing and then pretend after the fact,” the former producer said. “‘Why would they say these things? How could it possibly happen?’ What do you mean, how could it happen? You hired this person because they say crazy things.”
Given the volume of controversial opinions offered by Fox News opinion hosts, the former producer wondered where Scott draws the line between which statements are acceptable and which are too outrageous. “What’s inappropriate?” the former producer asked, “What’s not?”
Crossposted at News Hounds.
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