Seattle TV Station Fires Employee After Airing Doctored (and Insulting) Video of Trump

January 10th, 2019 3:06 PM

The Seattle Times reports a staffer at local Fox affiliate Q13 has been fired after the station aired a doctored (and insulting) video of President Donald Trump’s first primetime speech from the Oval Office on Tuesday.

Local radio host Todd Herman was sent a video from a listener. As the Times reported, "The video was changed to make it look as if Trump was sticking his tongue out languidly between sentences. In addition, the colors in the video look more saturated, leading the president’s skin and hair to appear more orange." Here's a side-by-side video: 

“This does not meet our editorial standards and we regret if it is seen as portraying the president in a negative light,” Q13 news director Erica Hill wrote in an emailed statement early Thursday.

Later Thursday morning, Hill released another statement saying, “We’ve completed our investigation into this incident and determined that the actions were the result of an individual editor whose employment has been terminated.”

The American people are very skeptical of “fake news” in the Old Media. This won't help. A poll earlier this year by Monmouth University asked “Do you think some traditional major news sources like TV and newspapers ever report fake news stories, or not?” A whopping 77 percent of those polled said Yes – 31 percent said it happens regularly, and 46 percent said it happens occasionally. Only 21 percent said they did not offer fake news. 

The Monmouth pollsters also asked “Do you think these sources report these stories on purpose in order to push an agenda or do they tend to report them more by accident or because of poor fact checking?” On that, 42 percent picked “push an agenda,” 26 percent went with “poor fact-checking,” and seven percent said “both equally.”

The Times pointed out that some traditional media outlets have faked pictures to make Democrats look good: 

In 2010, The Economist got into trouble for altering a photo to remove people standing on a beach with former President Barack Obama. Obama and two other people were at a Louisiana beach, with oil platforms in the distance. A photo editor at the magazine cropped out one person and digitally removed the other, creating the illusion of Obama standing alone at water’s edge contemplating the damage.