A dozen U.S. lawmakers are asking the Federal Communications Commission to investigate whether or not Sinclair Broadcast Group is "deliberately distorting" the news. USA Today reports 12 Democratic senators have sent a letter to FCC chairman Ajit Pai calling for an investigation of Sinclair, which owns or operates nearly 200 TV stations, including CNY Central in Syracuse and stations in Buffalo, Rochester and Albany. "We have strong concerns that Sinclair has violated the public interest obligation inherent in holding broadcast licenses," Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and others wrote Wednesday. "Sinclair may have violated the FCC's longstanding policy against broadcast licensees deliberately distorting news by staging, slanting, or falsifying information (traditionally known as the news distortion standard)," the letter continued. "These Sinclair … [Read more...] about Senators ask FCC to investigate Sinclair: Is CNY Central owner distorting news?
The chairman of CNY Central's owner, Sinclair Broadcast Group, has promised support to President Donald Trump several times, according to a new report. Sinclair chairman David D. Smith told The Guardian that he met with Trump at the White House to pitch a new broadcasting standard known as Next Gen TV. The technology update to the current standard, ATSC over-the-air broadcasting, would merge broadcast television with internet content via chips for TVs, cell phones and other devices. The chips would allow authorities, including the U.S. president, to authorities to broadcast directly to any American's phone -- even when phone lines are down. "I just wanted them to be aware of the technology," Smith told the UK newspaper in an interview published Tuesday. Smith also said he met with Trump during the 2016 election and offered support. "We are here to deliver your message," Smith recalled telling the future president. Sinclair Broadcast Group is the … [Read more...] about CNY Central owner Sinclair to Trump: ‘We are here to deliver your message’
Why did so many Sinclair Broadcast Group employees read the same script echoing President Donald Trump's right-wing message bashing the "fake news" media? If they refused, they could have been fired -- and their contracts may have made it too costly to quit. Bloomberg reports Sinclair, the nation's largest owner of local TV stations including CNY Central, requires some employees to sign agreements with a liquidated damages clause if they leave before their term is up. Quitting would require they pay as much as 40 percent of their annual compensation to the company. Three current and former employees told Bloomberg that the potential financial penalty made them not want to quit. Non-compete clauses, which prevent on-air talent from abruptly leaving for a competitor, can force them to be unemployed for six months or longer -- and unable to pay for another expensive clause: Forced arbitration. An employment law expert told The Daily Beast that the … [Read more...] about Too costly to quit Sinclair TV contracts? CNY Central staff remain (mostly) silent
President Donald Trump is praising CNY Central's owner, Sinclair Broadcast Group, after video showed anchors at Sinclair-owned TV stations reading the same script attacking the "fake news" media. "The Fake News Networks, those that knowingly have a sick and biased AGENDA, are worried about the competition and quality of Sinclair Broadcast," Trump tweeted Tuesday morning. "The 'Fakers' at CNN, NBC, ABC & CBS have done so much dishonest reporting that they should only be allowed to get awards for fiction!" Sinclair owns or operates 176 TV stations, including CNY Central's NBC 3 (WSTM-TV), CW 6 (WSTQ) and CBS 5 (WTVH) in Syracuse. The company is the nation's largest owner of local television stations, appearing in more than a quarter of U.S. homes including in Buffalo, Rochester and Albany. Video went viral over the weekend showing multiple anchors, including WTVH's Michael Benny and Allison Bybee, reading the same script from Sinclair last month. The company reportedly … [Read more...] about Trump praises CNY Central owner; Sinclair responds to criticisms
CNY Central and dozens of other local TV stations owned by Sinclair Broadcast Group have been accused of promoting President Donald Trump's agenda with a right-wing message. A video compilation went viral over the weekend showing CNY Central's Michael Benny and Allison Bybee reading a script identical to one read by other TV anchors across the country. The promo echoes Trump's war on the "fake news" media. "...We're concerned about the troubling trend of irresponsible, one sided news stories plaguing our country. The sharing of biased and false news has become all too common on social media," the script says. "Some members of the media use their platforms to push their own personal bias and agenda..." "This is extremely dangerous to our democracy." A version on Deadspin shows other anchors at Sinclair-owned TV stations reading the same lines, played side by side and on top of each other. CNY Central's promo ends with Benny and Bybee promising to … [Read more...] about CNY Central, other Sinclair TV stations caught reading same right-wing script (video)