Saturday, August 24th, 2019

WISN-TV and WITI-TV want to keep abortion issue hidden in the dark of night


Interesting decision by WISN-TV and WITI-TV in Milwaukee to restrict the hours when an issue ad on the topic of aborted fetal tissue sales can air on their stations. They would not let the ad run during the evening news when it would have the most impact.
Media Trackers reports:

A pair of Milwaukee television stations have told two pro-life organizations they can’t buy airtime during select news programming because the advertisement they want to air is not approved by station management. Fox6 and WISN have both declined to air an advertisement sponsored by Wisconsin Family Action and Pro-Life Wisconsin even though the ad is very similar to other political and issue ads run by other organizations. The topic of the ad is AB 305, a measure that seeks to stop aborted fetal body parts from being used in scientific and medical research in Wisconsin.

Originally the two groups wanted to run the 30-second ad (below) during morning and evening news. WISN told one of the organizations they wouldn’t air the ads during the evening news, but they could air them during entertainment programming. Fox6, WITI, was more draconian, tersely informing Wisconsin Family Action that the ad would not be aired after 4am or before 10pm on the station.

“After review by our station management team we have made the decision to accept (air) the two commercials after 10pm and before 4am. We are not comfortable with the content during morning, daytime and primetime hours,” wrote Mike Neal, director of sales at WITI, in an e-mail dated December 30.

The pro-life organizations had originally sought to buy airtime on WITI for the morning news.

A person who works for Wisconsin Family Action said that although WISN offered daytime and late night options to run the ad, none of the programming reached the type of audience the organization hoped to reach via the evening news.

I fully support the right of television stations to make a determination of what is appropriate to air at different times. However, there really is nothing objectionable in the ad and certainly not as graphic as it could have been. It’s not a bunch of fetal parts. It’s just the latest ultrasound technology and some ads. The ASPCA ads with Sarah McLachlan are certainly harder to watch. (If you don’t believe me, just ask Sarah.) So while the television stations are feeling uncomfortable about an ad asking some tough questions about the sale of fetal organs, don’t worry that they will suddenly have a change of heart about commercials for Victoria’s Secret, sexual lubricants, the different male enhancement drugs, male erection pills, and (probably illegal) “football fantasy” wagering. Those are the ads the station managers are proud to bring you.

Do you think WITI-TV and WISN-TV should air the ad from Pro-Life Wisconsin and Wisconsin Family Action calling for the ban on aborted fetal tissue sales?

  • Yes, this issue is important and the ad is in good taste. (58%, 11 Votes)
  • No, I am against any pro-life ads that make me uncomfortable. (16%, 3 Votes)
  • The television stations should run a rummage sale on baby parts. (16%, 3 Votes)
  • They should apologize and run the ads for free. (11%, 2 Votes)

Total Voters: 19

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