My turn: Community reaction to Trump rally coverage - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

My turn: Community reaction to Trump rally coverage

It doesn’t matter where you are on the political spectrum, most people will agree that a visit from a presidential candidate is something that puts our community in the national spotlight. (Source: Matthew Ray) It doesn’t matter where you are on the political spectrum, most people will agree that a visit from a presidential candidate is something that puts our community in the national spotlight. (Source: Matthew Ray)
Thousands of people packed Trask Coliseum to hear what the presidential hopeful had to say. (Source: Matthew Ray) Thousands of people packed Trask Coliseum to hear what the presidential hopeful had to say. (Source: Matthew Ray)

What a week for our community! It doesn’t matter where you are on the political spectrum, most people will agree that a visit from a presidential candidate is something that puts our community in the national spotlight. 

I’m proud that the visit was well attended and went off without any major incidents. Sure there were some protests. Disagreements are part of a democracy. But all in all, the visit was a net positive.  

I must admit, after years of being in this business, I still get amused by the comments that people make on both sides.  

Pretty much from the moment the news leaked that Trump would visit, people started emailing or calling us to say we’re doing too much on the visit or we were doing too little.  

And on the day of the visit, we got many people complaining we were biased against Trump and just as many complaining we were biased for Trump. 

The way I see it, if everyone’s upset, our people are probably doing a pretty good job of accomplishing our goal of fair coverage. 

I’d like to make one observation about those of you that love to “cast stones” at the media concerning political coverage.  If you have a favorite candidate or feelings of loyalty toward your party, you don’t have a chance of being objective with your opinion of our coverage.  It’s just not possible. 

That’s my turn. Now it’s your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at yourturn@wect.com.

Copyright 2016 WECT. All rights reserved.


Emailed comments from viewers:

Why is there no mention of Hillary Clinton and President Obama's obstructing of justice charges surrounding the FBI Investigation of her foundation mentioned in your news top stories? Every morning there is at least one negatively spun story about Trump, and absolutely NOTHING about the scandals that continue to swirl around Clinton?

It's disheartening at the lack of honest and fair reporting your organization is doing, which is why I don't watch your news...and now will not read your news app.

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You are dreaming if you think viewers see no bias in CNN, ABC,NBC, CBS, etc.  The key people in media are married to Democratic powerhouses. 

Truth - something that is sorely absent in reporting by drive by media.I hope people find their news from social media or other sources in the future rather than the biased broadcasters we have now.

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Does this also mean that a reporter with a favorite candidate or party does not have a chance at objective reporting?

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What a bunch of crap. Personally, I think BOTH candidates are garbage, but the media is completely in the left’s pocket, and you go on trying to convince people that you’re not “biased” one way or another. Then you go on and say that if your viewers blame it on the media, then they’re just blinded by their loyalties to whichever candidate they support. Garbage. I pity the sheep that follow mainstream media. There is NO integrity in your profession anymore my friend. Try and convince me there is. Start with why there was NO coverage of what was happening outside the “walls” of the DNC in Philadelphia.

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Funny you should mention” bias.” I actually deleted the WECT app off my phone a few months ago for that very reason. I got fed up with WECT reporters referring to the HB2 legislation as “The Anti LGBT Law.”  That wasn’t HB2’s title or purpose at all, yet producers and others at WECT chose intentionally to call it that. Words mean things and those words were chosen on purpose, to misrepresent and inflame, in my opinion.

I don’t frequent WECT website as I once did due to the growing bias in reporting, but did visit it over the last few days just to see how the Trump event was being covered. The night before the Trump rally, the lead headline on WECT was that the protestors were preparing for Trump, nto Trump or his supporters.

I did not read all the articles, but the protestors seemed to be given as much time as those that were there to support Trump.  I’ve lived here all my life and I have never seen so many people inside Trask. I’d guess inside and out there were probably nine to ten thousand people there.  I’ll say there were 100 protestors, but I think that’s high.

The bias? WECT gave the few protestors nearly the same air time as the ten thousand people that were there to support Trump. The protestors represented less than 1% of the crowd that was there yet they were given nearly the same amount of air time. That’s bias. WECT even went out of its way to dig up local Democrat politicians to give them air time on the issue.

The day after the rally there was no mention of it in WECT’s news reports on the local radio station I listen to. On the other hand, more than once I’ve heard local LGBT and Black Lives Matter rally’s mentioned for days after the event. One time I actually called Bob (or sent him an email) on the third day of having it in his report and told that was enough. I was tired of hearing about it…his “reporting” was turning into a promotion.

The bias at a national level is much more obvious of course. Katie Couric, Brian Williams, Dan Rather guilty of lying, fabricating documents and modifying content to mislead viewers and they are still out there acting as “reporters.” That speaks volume about the state of our press today.

The good thing about seeing this bias first hand and at the local level was that it gave me an opportunity for my 13 year old daughter to see it in action. She’s heard me talk about it, but to be able to show her examples first hand was a great lesson on how the media can attempt to influence and misrepresent.

I realize as a manager you don’t want to be told or even believe your stations reporting is bias, but it is. Is WECT as bad as a CNN or MSNBC? I don’t think so. But the bias is definitely there. WECT’s bias is much more subtle, but intentional in my opinion. The bias can be as subtle as the time given or not given an issue. Reporting turns into promotion of an agenda or group. The influence on those watching just as great. In some case it’s not so subtle, as in the reporting on the HB2. WECT’s anti HB2 slant is obvious.

 I’d normally welcome the opportunity to do a “my turn” segment and pull your news reports to demonstrate the bias in a segment on the news. Problem is, last time I was in the press on a political issue my house got vandalized. With that in mind, and for my family’s safety, I’d ask that you not use my name if you happen to use the content from this email.

Sad thing is I love WECT. My family has a long history with the station. I love and respect Fran and Jon and think they are the best around but I got to where I could take the way many stories were presented. I realize that’s not their fault, they are just reading what they are presented.  

I quit wasting time making comments on news websites years ago. I finally figured out It was a waste of time. Your editorial was timely for me so I figured I’d take the opportunity to respond as you requested. 

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