Get FOX News Banned in England

From: Anonymous British Citizen (edited for privacy by the owner of
To: [email protected]
Sent: Wednesday, May 14, 2003 9:01 AM

As the smart and objective Americans know, the Fox News Channel is not "fair and balanced" and operates as a mouthpiece for the right and their special interests. In the U.S., they can parade themselves as a news channel, safe in the fact that broadcasting authorities cannot tell them otherwise. Not content to spew out their bias in America, FNC is carried via satellite to many countries, including the United Kingdom.

Unfortunately for them, rules on programming bias exist in Great Britain , particularly regarding broadcast news for commercial channels.

This situation is monitored by the Independent Televison Commission (ITC). As the name suggests this is independent of governement, but has legal authority. Amongst the penalties which can be imposed by the ITC are fines and suspensions. The latter has been invoked recently and one station has been suspended from broadcasting due to its breach of impartiality (in news) regulations.

Why is this important to an American audience? Imagine how embarassed Fox will be if their war allies, the British, banned them from the airwaves for not being "fair and balanced".

Even Bill O'Reilly will not be able to spin that one, then again he will probably try.

Furthermore it would be proof positive of their real agenda which to date has not been admitted. Complaints to the ITC are taken quite seriously, and given Fox's overt bias, the result appears to be inevitable.

How You Can Help

You do not have to be resident in the U.K. to file a complaint to the ITC.

All one has to do is point out specific examples of bias you saw on FOX news.

How to File a Complaint

The first step is to go to the website of the ITC,

Their program codes, especially on media bias are relatively short and easy to understand. The next step is painful but necessary. You have to watch Fox news and breifly jot down the bias comments, and make a note of the time. On the ITC website, you will find a complaint form which can be emailed to the Commission.

General complaints like "Fox news is nothing but a shill for the GOP" will NOT be successful.

A serious complaint goes something like," I was watching Fox news, and at x time, a discussion ensued, or x apparent contradiction of ITC codes relating to x. " As most of the offences relate to breaches of the impartiality code, this is relatively easy and will not take much time. Still, you should make the effort to read the code, as the more breaches pointed out, the better your complaint reads.

The incidents you complain about are being shown in Greenwich Mean Time, which is five hours later than EST. For clarity's sake, you should indicate the time of broadcast in GMT.

Good targets are shows such as Fox and Friends, where the on-air "journalists" make incessant bias, unfiair, and objectionable comments. Politically one-sided discussions, a Fox speciality are also good targets. Even our friend, O'Reilly is not exempt, as his show purports to be news analysis. The ITC code has guidlines as to how far one person's opinions on a program can go. Seemingly, there is a reason why there is no O'Reilly equivalent in Britain (aside from human decency).

Your complaint should prompt a case officer to pull the video for the "offending" programme.

Eventually, a judgement will be made as to whether or not your complaint was upheld. As numerous complaints have already been filed against Fox, suspension of their licence would seem to be the final remedy. A caution or fine will not deter them from "real journalism".

Everyone should note that this is well within conceivability and can be accomplished with relative ease. Unlike a boycott, this is the ultimate statement, something realistically attainable, in a short period of time.

You report, they decide, and lets really see who is "fair and balanced". The station America trusts.....banned in Britain.

Anonymous British Citizen