Our Fox News Conundrum (Faux News)

Faux News,

Years ago, Fox News displayed their brand as “Fair and Balanced.” Interesting that you don’t hear that expression any longer coming from the Fox media company. They are neither fair or balanced. If they were, online companies such as Media Matters would not have the same platform when evaluating right wing news sources. Said differently, MM has plenty of daily content in which to highlight on their website.

Two recent example of Fox News’ biases:


On November 30, a very young Michigan high school student took a semiautomatic handgun and opened fire inside Oxford High School. The massacre left four students dead inside Oxford high School.

One week later, the Fox News’ 50-foot-tall Christmas tree outside its New York City headquarters was set on fire. According to police, the suspect acted alone, and the fire didn’t appear to be politically motivated.


For the two days after the deadliest school shooting this year, according to Media Matters, Fox News discussed the story for just over one hour. By contrast, Fox news spent nearly two hours covering the Christmas tree fire for the two days after it was set on fire.


One other example:


According to Vice.com, “A media watchdog found over 250 cases of COVID-19 misinformation on Fox News in just one five-day period, and economists demonstrated that Fox News had a demonstrable impact on non-compliance with public health guidelines,” the lawmakers said.

So what to do if you indeed think Fox News spreads lies and misinformation and are no longer “Fair and Balanced?” You could complain to your cable provider that you no longer feel that FN should be part of any cable or streaming bundle. (For the record, FN receives $2.50 per month per subscriber based on the current contract.) If there’s more pressure on cable providers that may make a difference. You could find the advertisers who still support FN and tell them you will boycott their products because they advertise on Fox News.

According to the website ‘Unfox My Cable Box,’ the wave of big contracts in 2020 and 2021 are about to expire. They say that these contracts make up about 65% of Fox News’ subscriber fee revenue. If we want to stop paying the Fox News “tax,” now is the time to act. This website goes on to say that Fox News makes approximately $1.8 billion per year from hidden subscriber fees–twice as much as CNN and three times as much as MSNBC. Again, just 3 million of the nation’s 90 million cable TV subscribers actively watch the channel. In other words, 87 million Americans pay their cable company for and thus subsidize Fox News—despite rarely if ever actually watching the channel.

Vice.com also asks why is Fox News so durable to accountability? Part of this is the company’s ongoing association with cable providers such as Comcast and Charter, who continue to feature the channel in cable lineups, regardless of public harm—or whether consumers want to pay for it.

One predictable response from cable providers might be that eliminating Fox

News is squelching free speech. From their perspective, they might say that the liberal media is out to eliminate any news that doesn’t exactly align to their liberal doctrine. Even if the cable companies get plenty of complaints about Fox, even without cancellation, perhaps enough pressure could be put on the cable providers so they negotiate a fairer fee with Fox, a contract that more fairly aligns to the amount of viewers Fox News gets on a daily basis.


Bottom line, we fund misinformation and untruths without regards to reaction from the public.

Three things a person can do if they hate Fox News:


1. Pressure advertisers to abandon the nighttime shows if not all Fox News programs. It hard to gauge what difference it makes if one advertiser drops out or they are short one advertiser. However, one must logically think that it makes some difference. Removing half could significantly hurt the company.


If you go to Media Matters, you can find the nighttime opinion shows and includes a list of those current advertisers. Pressuring these advertisers could help, but one also wonders if others will take their place at a less rate.


2. Ask you cable provider to drop all from Fox News. Only 2 to 4 million subscribers. I’m paying for FN. A complete misrepresentation of the theories of supply and demand. Again, tell your cable provider to drop them from the cable or streaming bundle as they no longer are a credible news channel.


3. The other option is to bring to light the fact that the majority of their income comes from cable subscribers and less on advertising. At first glance, I thought that addressing the advertisers would help to bring changes at FN. I was mistaken but I’m still alarmed that several of their evening programs have loss advertisers and they’re still chugging along. Bringing truth and transparency to this issue might also help change ultimately come to FN.


To be fair, I’ve read several online articles recently where the argument made was that FN would be fine if they lost most advertisers. The argument made was that Fox has negotiated an advantageous deal so every streaming or cable subscriber bundle means that, regardless of your political beliefs and your moral compass, you support the Fox Corporation. In 2022, FN must renegotiate, one wonders what kind of a deal they’ll make -- will it be less or more than the current $2.50 fee? If the current rate stays the same, I think they made be temporarily out of the wood shed, even if they lose have their advertisers. If the rate drops, that’s an entirely different story.

Let’s take some action on Fox News to force them to be more accountable with the information said on their programming.


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