Traverse City's TV 9&10 draws interest over Rather poll

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The Associated Press has been running a story about the Northern Michigan CBS affiliate conducting a web poll of its viewers about whether or not to run tonight's Dan Rather one hour sendoff special. In the AP story, 9&10's Tessia Klix said the special was something the station normally would air, but decided to put the issue up for a vote after being inundated with "negative feedback" about Rather.

The poll itself is a tad cumbersome -- you have to enter a valid e-mail address and then confirm your vote before it counts -- and will likely drive down the number of responses the station might have otherwise received. After completing the confirmation, no feedback is given on the status of the voting thus far.

I don't understand why 9&10 would consider pulling the plug on this show just because some of their viewers are upset at Rather and the Bush military records debacle. If those viewers don't want to see the tribute, they can easily tune elsewhere or just not watch TV for that hour. Unless the feedback from that poll shows 75% or more negative feedback, I'm thinking it'd be a mistake for them to not show the program tonight. Why deny those that do want to see the show the chance when the alternative for those that don't is so easy?!?



At WWTV-WWUP/TV, 9&10 News, we believe that the role of a local television broadcaster is to serve our local community. We offered our online poll concerning the airing of the Dan Rather special as a way to let our Northern Michigan viewers voice their opinion.

Unfortunately, this simple act of broadcasting localism has been grossly misinterpreted. We were simply trying to maintain the great tradition of local viewer input that is the foundation of our modern day broadcasting system. It was never our intent to embarrass Mr. Rather or the CBS Network.

We have always valued our over 50 year relationship with the CBS network and look forward to many more years of our affiliation.

Therefore we have suspended the poll and will broadcast the program in its entirety.

We apologize for any misunderstandings our actions may have caused.

William E. Kring
General Manager
WWTV-WWUP/TV, 9&10 News
(800) 782-7910, ext. 3120






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This page contains a single entry by Mike Austerman published on March 9, 2005 7:01 AM.

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