KXLY Responsibility in Journalism

Robert Peck
Robert Peck Spokane Valley 3 Comments
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On Thursday, July 17, the KXLY Six O'clock news carried a blatantly defamatory story attacking an elected representative of the people of the State of Washington, State Representative, Matt Shea. The story was a disgrace to the ethical standards of journalism and constituted an act of public character assassination by media insinuation without the benefit of trial.

The story was based on a citizen's report to police of a conversation overheard in a restaurant which he misunderstood and thought to be some sort of plotting of terrorist activity. Your own story admitted that both the police and FBI investigated the matter and found the citizen's concerns to be unfounded. Yet that did not stop your station from using this baseless insinuation as a pretext for launching into a political hit piece clearly calculated to cast aspersions on the character of a candidate for public office which your station obviously opposes and seeks to defame.

Those who bear the title of “media” hold a certain public trust in a community. Your story on July 17 betrayed that trust. For the sake of the citizens of my community, I call on KXLY to repudiate the slanderous attack on Representative Shea and to adopt standards of journalistic integrity that will not allow your station, or the trust that it holds with the citizens of the community, to again be used as a tool for political retribution.

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