Fight Back: Fox Isn’t a News Organization

Fox News is not a news organization. They mix in slices of current events into a hearty stew of entertainment and outright propaganda. They routinely offer false and misleading information to be consumed by their target market: us.

At some point, when a blowhard like Bill O’Reilly demonizes the left, it can feel like more of an abstract. But make no mistake that he is actively campaigning against us (Rick Perstein via Sara, Orcinus, emphasis mine):

Reflect, for a minute, on who America’s grandparents are being taught to hate: Americans who do what Americans are supposed to do, what our founders implored us to do: debate vigorously and in the open, the meaning of the public good. They used to call these people “citizens.” They’re “like the Nazi Party,” Bill O’Reilly says. They are you and me.

We don’t need to take this sitting down. We can take it right to their pocketbook:

I’ve just become a proud “FOX Attacker”. Now you can too. It’s not a boycott. It’s simply calling advertisers and informing them what FOX says. FOX can’t survive that. Have a blog? Then help spread the word.

“FOX can’t survive that.” Powerful words. In one sense this is a call to spocko Fox News. The idea being that advertisers will not want to be associated with an organization that peddles the kind of bull Fox serves up in a quivering news-lite form.

In another sense this is an aggressive step forward for progressives in the ongoing framing wars. Fox News and its controversial hosts are working overtime to paint liberals as traitors, and their media competition as liberal. Both points are demonstrably false.

In fact the accusations hurled at opponents often come back to bite them, and ironic teeth are the sharpest of all (Tom,This Modern World):

The well-known hate site BillO’Reilly.com is being investigated by the Secret Service for threatening Hillary Clinton’s life. Well, actually it was just some commenter, but by Billo’s own standards, if the comment is on his site, that means he condones it. Why does Bill O’Reilly want Hillary Clinton to die?

By advancing and making clear how we all see Fox News, we are doing more than attacking their source of funding. We are launching a direct offensive on their most valuable resource of all: their legitimacy.

A News organization with zero credibility is out of business. There is no need for a boycott.

So join the coalition against Fox News. Become a Fox Attacker. Fox is doing everything they can to paint liberals as political monsters. We must fight back. Fortunately, to fight back, we don’t have to paint. We just have to point out.

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9 Responses

  1. Yes, typical pro 1st amendment liberalism…

  2. Moe,
    Since when is there something wrong with calling someone on their bullshit?

    O’Reilly gets a free pass for calling liberal blogs nazis, but we get slammed for pointing out that he calls liberal blogs nazis? Come on!

    The 1st amendment does not protect you from criticism. That’s also covered.

  3. Juts letting a little sun shine upon Fox. If they had the good, and where showing real news, their should be no problem. But those who peddle snake oil tend to run for the county line as soon as people find out that what they bought was poison. I wonder why that is.

  4. Don’t even let him get a pass on calling you a liberal – unless that is understood to mean ‘freedom fighter’.

  5. You do realize that fighting fox by calling advertisers is useless right? advertisers are going to care about how many people they can reach…meaning they will advertise the same crap on Fox that they show on CNN, that they show on .

    The way you’ll really affect advertisers and therefore stations like fox is if you got a boycott of all stations using advertising by X advertising company. Not by calling an Advertising agency and saying…”i’m not gonna watch this channel.”

  6. opit,
    Well, I am, and my language in this post does make that kind of clear. Besides, being a liberal is something to be damn proud of.

    Nick,
    They care about market reach, and they also care about their brand. There are numerable cases where an advertiser will withdraw from a program they deem at odds with their “values” (ie the corporate image they want to project). This isn’t quite the same as a boycott, true, but it is already having an effect.

    Part of this campaign is a direct attack on Fox as a news organization. By attacking Fox’s brand image, we can start shrinking their audience.

  7. why do not follow the simple logic: you do like it ? do not watch it !!
    go home, there is no case here

  8. Heh. Too many times people let the word be ‘re-defined’ into something else which can then be used as a perjorative : a tactic similar to using a ‘straw-man’ argument.
    There is only a danger when you allow those ideas to be thought of as ‘airy-fairy academic’ – euphamism for unrealistic- and therefore demean the serious principles behind them.

  9. Opit,
    Dead on.
    2008voter,
    Why do you think the only options are to march in lock step, or just shut up? There is a middle ground, and it holds far more promise than either extreme: Stand Up and Take Part.

    Fox is actively shaping our national discourse. Well, so are we. Don’t like it? You have other options than “shut up” and “joooinn uss”. You can dissent, which is precisely what you have done in leaving your comment, and what we are doing with our petition against Fox.

    (ps, I think you meant “[if] you do [not] like it [, then ] do not watch it”.)

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