Sinclair executives trying to mollify angry anchors, but it’s not working


This is more exposure than they signed up for.

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The national firestorm over Sinclair Broadcasting’s dictate to news anchors to recite verbatim an attack on fellow journalists is having the most blowback locally, where news anchors are direct targets of their viewers’ ire. That’s put Sinclair executives in the position of having to apologize for putting their employees in the hot seat. But they’re not apologizing for mandating conservative ideological content.

Anchors from three different Sinclair stations, who spoke with The Daily Beast on the condition of anonymity, said that over the past two days, Sinclair’s regional news directors have begun reaching out to some anchors to offer a mild apology. […]

In two of these conversations, anchors chided regional news directors for forcing local anchors to read the scripts. And in all three conversations, the news directors did not apologize for the content of the promotional video itself.

“The apology was for putting us in a bad spot, for making us unwilling targets,” one anchor told The Daily Beast. “There is no remorse from the corporate leaders who will continue peddling their politics and quest for profits by any means necessary.”

The Daily Beast talked to other anchors who were included in the now infamous Deadspin video, showing dozens of anchors reciting the promo spots in unison. They are really not happy and are still waiting for their apology from the bosses. “I’m the one taking the heat, and still no one is talking to me,” one of them said. Apparently they have received an email from vice president of news Scott Livingston, who did acknowledge they’re in a rough spot. “Unfortunately, you are facing the brunt of the reaction on social media,” the email Daily Beast reviewed says. “That’s unfortunate. I know all of you did your best in executing this promo spot and I greatly appreciate your efforts.” Not exactly dripping with contrition, that.

Even for some of those few who got the apology call, it will never be enough. “Unfortunately, nothing is going to rid me of the regret and feeling like I’m a sell-out,” one of them told the Daily Beast. “I wish life had do-overs.”


USA News


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