Monday, June 06, 2005

Political turmoil at PBS, NPR

Political turmoil at PBS, NPR: Charges of liberal bias lead to changes, backlash
Posted on Sunday, June 05 @ 10:49:01 EDT
This article has been read 1837 times.
By Steve Goldstein, Philadelphia Inquirer
For many Americans, public TV means Sesame Street, Masterpiece Theatre and Antiques Roadshow. But for Kenneth Y. Tomlinson, chairman of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, it came to mean liberal bias in its news and public affairs programming.
Two years ago, the Republican former head of Voice of America and Reader's Digest set out to restore what he called objectivity and balance to the Public Broadcasting Service and National Public Radio.
Now Tomlinson's makeover attempts have made their own news: Angry chiefs at PBS and NPR; an investigation of whether his actions amounted to illegal political interference; and questions about whether he may have overreached.
Media specialist Patricia Aufderheide said Tomlinson's actions show a "wanton disregard" for the corporation's mission.
"It's not CPB's job to introduce politicization; its job is to insulate public broadcasting from partisan politics," said Aufderheide, who teaches at American University's Center for Social Media in Washington....