All Articles Tagged "Fox News Channel"
You Ain’t Gots To Lie: FOX Claims Oprah’s “Pushing Racism” With Swiss Bag Drama To Promote “The Butler”
If there’s one thing I know about FOX News from trying to avoid the channel at the gym, it’s that hosts of the different programs love to reach. And that’s what happened when Republican strategist Dee Dee Benkie tried to insinuate that Oprah Winfrey might have opened up about the unfair treatment she received at that Zurich boutique in an attempt to get people to see her movie, The Butler. This discussion was brought up on the program America Live.
According to Variety and Mediate, host Martha MacCallum, Benkie, and Fox analyst Jehmu Greene were having a discussion about that $30,000+ bag and the treatment Oprah received when she wanted to see it on the show, and both Benkie and MacCallum claimed that Lady O had overreacted in assuming her treatment was based on her race, when they (both white women) probably wouldn’t have been able to see the bag either. They went on to say that the associate’s behavior was “rude” rather than racist, and Benkie tried to ask the question of whether or not Oprah was sharing this story and classifying it as racism to get people to see her new film (which comes out Friday!):
“Maybe Oprah Winfrey was miffed because she didn’t know who she was. And here’s the other thing: you know Oprah’s got a movie out about the butler. It would be really terrible if she was using this story to promote the movie. I’m not saying that. But I gotta say, it’s not fair to call anyone a racist whenever there’s no proof of it. There’s absolutely zero proof. Rude, yes. Racist, no.”
MacCallum agreed and said that by claiming the incident is racist, it perpetuates an idea that racism is still a major problem…you know, even though it obviously is. That young privilege can keep you blind, ya’ll:
“When we call something like this racist, it perpetuates this discussion, it makes people think, ‘People are still racist. It happens all the time, it happens all the time’ and that’s damaging.”
Fox analyst Jehmu Greene, who is black, tried to explain that yes, this is something that happens all the time, but to appease her cohorts, tried to fall back on her use of the R-word:
“We have to come to grips in this country that we have unconscious bias. We, in our hearts, want to be as equal as possible, but because of the way our brains process all of the messages that come to us through our visual culture—this how our bodies work, this is how our brains categorize things.
Maybe this clerk wasn’t racist but there is a bigger issue in this country…When I walk into a store and go buy hair for a weave, yes, I am treated differently.”
But by the head shaking, constant interrupting and side-eyeing, it seems Benkie and MacCallum didn’t agree. One person’s experience certainly isn’t another’s…
Oprah has since apologized, NOT because the story wasn’t true, but because it got blown up media-wise to a point where the country felt the need to send out an apology for her treatment. She even did this on the red carpet of one of the premiere’s of The Butler, so to claim she came out with this story (especially when she was trying to keep people’s names out of it) to get sympathy so that someone would see her movie, now that’s damaging, honey.
What do you think? Could this have been for publicity? Or was Benkie wrong to even insinuate such a thing?
Jeff Zucker has already achieved a level of infamy in certain circles for making the decision to take Soledad O’Brien out of the morning lineup and replace her with Chris Cuomo and evening anchor Erin Burnett. (Though it looks like Soledad is landing on her feet just fine, thank you very much.) Now he can add a ratings dip to his troubles.
Deadline Hollywood reports that the network saw a five percent decline in daytime viewers for the month of February, and a one percent decline for evening viewers, compared to January. Part of the problem could’ve been the network’s extensive coverage of the stranded cruise ship Triumph’s tug to port in Alabama on Valentine’s Day. Many questioned that decision. And there’s no more election to cover (which could explain the cruise ship bonanza.)
The year-over-year results are even worse. CNN is down 10 percent in daytime viewers compared to February 2012, and 18 percent in the evening, attracting 424,000 viewers between the hours of 8pm and 11pm this month. That said, last February’s numbers were affected by not only televised Republican presidential primary debates and the broadcast funeral for Whitney Houston.
Fox News Channel, which came in number one, pulled in 1.79 million primetime viewers on average for the month.
On a positive note, some of CNN’s programs saw ratings increases, reports TVNewser, including Erin Burnett Outfront, which was up 15 percent (an up 11 percent in the important 25-to-54 demographic) and Starting Point, O’Brien’s soon-to-be-canceled morning show, which was up 27 percent broadly and 21 percent in that key demo.
TVNewser has the CNN press release that touts the narrowing gap between its ratings and MSNBC.
Zucker assumed his role at CNN on January 20, so it’s barely been more than a month on the job. We’ll have to see what sort of impact his changes have. Will you tune in to the post-Soledad morning program?
Perhaps it wasn’t as much of an historic occasion this time around (although the re-election of our first black President is a very big deal). That could explain the viewing drop off for Monday’s inaugural events.
The 2013 Inauguration of President Obama pulled in fewer television viewers than in 2009, when he became the first African American to take the highest office in the United States. According to The Hollywood Reporter, cable news viewership dropped by roughly 10 million during the half-hour swearing in, with CNN topping MSNBC and Fox News Channel. Nielsen’s Fast National ratings for the Monday event were not surprisingly down. Combined averages from CNN, MSNBC and Fox News Channel was just about seven million viewers.
For the special coverage, CNN averaged 3.14 million viewers during the swearing in, 1.11 million of them in the key 25-to-54 age demographic. During primetime, CNN averaged 3.57 million total viewers, with 1.27 million adults ages 25-to-54 watching.
Compare this to Obama’s 2009 inauguration ceremony, which averaged nearly 38 million viewers with cable and broadcast networks combined.
Did you watch this year?