Wednesday, October 14, 2009

FOX says Kansas City Star TV critic lied about a Glenn Beck email

Kansas City Star TV critic Aaron Barnhart found himself embroiled in controversy this week after tweeting that FOX PR had emailed him saying Glenn Beck would be "raising fears" on an upcoming show. Barnhart's tweet was picked up by Keith Olbermann, who used it in an anti-Glenn Beck rant on his Countdown show.

After the show FOX News vehemently denied sending Barnhart the email, and Barnhart has so far refused to release the email. Which would easily end the controversy if Barnhart is telling the truth.

Here is the tweet that set off the firestorm:

FOX News PR just emailed to let me know Glenn Beck will be raising fears on his show tonight...

Oddly enough, left-leaning Huffington Post has been trying to correct the record.

... Fox News PR denies ever sending that e-mail to Barnhart, and Barnhart hasn't responded to their requests to find out where it came from.

"We never sent anything to Barnhart and he refused to respond to us when directly asked who he received that from," a Fox News spokesperson said.

The distinction is important, as e-mails from the PR department can be perceived as on-the-record and thus legitimized as the network's official position on a subject.

Barnhart did, however, walk back the claim somewhat, calling it a "smartass comment" in his blog post about the Olbermann shout-out but still neglecting to say who had sent the e-mail.


The fact that Barnhart hasn't produced the email speaks volumes.
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9 comments:

John Altevogt said...

When I was writing for The Star I found out that a local shock jock had gotten drunk at a remote and got into a foul mouthed shouting match all of which went out over the air including racial taunts, etc.

I was the only one at The Star to write about it. I was told that both of The Star's entertainment reporters knew about the event (Barnhart being one of them) but that they wouldn't say anything about it lest they lose their access to sources at the station.

Barnhart's blog is a punk site. He reviews all comments before posting and censors anything negative about himself. I should say reviewed, because I don't think he even allows posts anymore.

John Altevogt said...

Oops, the kids the jock was shouting at were Hispanic and the racial taunts came from the jock along with a slew of obscenities.

That said, lying at The Star isn't exactly news, it's almost policy. Don't look for any discipline to take place.

McClatchy Watch said...

John, I did a quick review of the Society of Professional Journalists Code of Ethics and I'm guessing Barnhart violated several of the published standards.

John Altevogt said...

That too is hardly new. In the blog entry Derek did about me (among many, many other things) the ethical violations are staggering. Star doesn't care. They do not care. I would argue that it is easily the most corrupt newspaper in America. Not simply biased, corrupt.

Anonymous said...

Beck is a monumental worry for the fringe lefties. They'll do anything to discredit the guy who justs gets more popular.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, keep up the Glenn Beck bashing you limp-wristed libs. His ratings go up every time you fabricate another anti-Beck story. All that publicity is pumping him up for a run at 4-5 million viewers nightly. Maddow and Olbermann struggle to get 1 million.

Anonymous said...

What in the hell is going on at the KC Star? It seems as if there are people there that are actually doing their very best to prove they have no credibility at all.

Is it possible that they hate the Star so bad they would intentionally sabotage it?

Anonymous said...

Is it possible that they hate the Star so bad they would intentionally sabotage it?
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Yes. It's just like in the movie "Major League." Except there, they were trying to move the team to Florida, instead of California.

Anonymous said...

Barnhart's blog is a one-man ego site where he spends most of his time talking and videoing about himself.
Let's face it, he was caught lying, otherwise he would have have printed the tweet.