Bad Journalism About The Affordable Care Act Trickling Down To My Local Station

WBNS 10TV Columbus Ohio

The problems with the national website have been reported quite a bit by a national media that loves to parrot Republican talking points. I really hoped that the bias in the reporting would stay with the national media and my local media would do a better job. I was wrong. The one station I watch most often, WBNS 10TV, in Columbus, breathlessly reported the problems signing up for the insurance exchange but has failed to offer any context or any success stories.

Ever since the insurance exchange opened at the beginning of October, WBNS 10TV has been doing stories like the following:

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Occupy Columbus A Big Success

screencap from report about protest in Columbus Ohio

Saturday was the big global protest day as part of the “Occupy Wall Street” movement and in Columbus hundreds showed up at the steps of the Ohio State House to join in the event. The top news station in town WBNS 10tv had a surprising objective report allowing for a good bit of face and sign time as well as mentioning the other locations of protest in the almost 4 minute report at the top of the 11 PM newscast.

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Once again a sports hero has fallen – where was the Columbus media

Ohio State football coach Jim Tressel, held out as the model of integrity, resigned Monday as the pressure mounted due to a memorabilia-for-tattoo scandal that showed no sign of simmering down. Like all media created heroes, the backlash and piling on has been merciless. Besides the obvious questions about what is true or not, where was the Columbus media when all this was going on?

The start was in December when we all found out that 5 players had traded memorabilia (rings, jerseys, autographs, etc…) for tattoos at a Columbus tattoo parlor. At the time Coach Tressel and Ohio State officials claimed they found out about it in December. The five players were allowed to play in the season ending Sugar Bowl but were suspended for five games to start the 2011 season.

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Failed CEO peddles book on economic policy on former investor’s TV channel

Bill Diffenderffer was CEO of SkyBus airlines that was based in Columbus in 2007. It was billed as a value no frills airline that had limited $10 tickets and cheap regular fares. The airline went belly up in 11 months. Now the same guy that couldn’t run an airline is pushing a book he wrote that complains about President Obama’s economic policy. The even funnier bit is he did an interview on Channel 10 whose parent company was an investor in the failed airline.

The problem, besides a failed CEO trying to lecture on economic policy, was that during the broadcast it wasn’t mentioned that Dispatch Printing Company, parent of WBNS 10TV was one of the investors. The article on the website does mention it.

Then there was this:

“I wanted a president that came in and said ‘We need to fix some things’ – health care needs to be fixed – that doesn’t mean government should manage a health care system; they don’t know how.”

Diffenderffer said the same holds true with the bailouts of automakers and the banking industry.

“They don’t know how to run a company, so why have a car czar? They don’t know how to run banks yet they all have these people now telling them how they should be run,” Diffenderffer said. “I think we have to let the big companies fail so the newer hungrier new models can come in a replace their old models that aren’t working.”

Skybus CEO Speaks On Why Airline Failed

It is understandable that some one who couldn’t run a successful airline might get the actual economic policy he is complaining about wrong. The government isn’t planning on managing the health care system or running the auto and banking industry.

Taking advice on economics from this guy is like taking relationship advice from Tiger Woods.

It seems one Columbus TV station takes the day off on weekends

I guess I am too caught up in the 24 hour news cycle where I expect either breaking news or at least new stories to show up on my local TV station websites on the day the news breaks. It seems that the WBNS 10TV website takes the weekend off unless the news is significant. 

On Saturday some ticket holders for an event at the Palace Theater showed up hours after the event had happened. The time had been changed but some people didn’t hear about it. The story was on 10TV’s 11 PM newscast but still wasn’t posted on their website at that time. The story was on the website for Channel 4 the NBC station.

The only story posted on the website from Saturday was a robbery suspect who was shot in South Columbus in the morning and they had the scores from the Indians and Reds games that afternoon.

10TV sister company, The Columbus Dispatch had 3 more Saturday story links on its front page.

The problem is that on Saturday and Sunday, there are times when the evening newscasts aren’t seen due to sports or other programing. Basically I wouldn’t know any local updates until 11 PM or later if network programing runs over.