Saturday, May 06, 2006

What's Fox 8's Angle

Update: As of 8:30 Monday night, the Morton/De La Salle conflict is the sixth ranked local news story on Fox 8's site. I know that bloggers tend to be too quick to accuse the media of bias or worse) but that one media outlet would attach such importance to a story that no other outlet even noticed, strikes me as somewhat odd.

While channel surfing last night, I noticed a story on Fox 8's 9:30 news about Bishop Paul Morton. I assumed that it was about his endorsement of Landrieu, I stopped to watch. Instead, Morton was threatening a protest of, or calling attention to, racial discrimination at De La Salle High School. I won't go into the details (as of Saturday night, story still available at the station's website), but after a lengthy story (certain to,er, color any viewer's perception of Morton) complete with footage of Morton holding what appeared to be a press conference, interviews with De La Salle's two principals (apparently DLS has two) and footage of the De La Salle rulebook (the issue was acceptable hair styles), John Snell went on to say that in a related matter, Bishop Morton also endorsed Mitch Landrieu today and then read a bit of Morton's statement. That was it, no footage of the endorsement press conference at all.

I did wonder that Morton had two press conferences in one day, but since I missed the beginning of the story, I didn't hear when Morton actually raised the issue (the story on the station's web site doesn't say). No mention of the De La Salle story on channel 6 at 10, but it did mention the endorsement, complete with a clip of Morton's anti-Nagin statements. Channel 15 didn't mention either story later in the 10:00 pm rerun.*

Searching the internet, I can't find any mention of the Morton/De La Salle story anywhere but Fox 8's site, which has it prominently displayed-- with no noticeable mention of the endorsement. In contrast, no apparent mention of either story still up (I doubt that the De La Salle story was ever up) on on WWl or WDSU's sites, ABC 26 and the Picayune still have the endorsement story visibly (though not prominently) displayed as of Sat. PM. Obviously, Fox 8 wouldn't fabricate a story that obvious, but I would be curious about whether the De La Salle story stayed on the shelf for a couple of days before it seemed important (again, I have no idea when Morton spoke out against De La Salle). At the very least, the importance that the various local media outlets assign to the two stories is interesting.

Link about the company that owns Fox 8.

*For anyone unfamilar with New Orleans TV, channel 15 on cable continuously reruns the last edition of WWL-TV's local newscast--in other words, the last local news is available around the clock. WWL is the local CBS affiliate, formerly owned by Loyola University, now owned by Belo communications.

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