Home Arts & Culture Guess what the White house has to do with The Underground TV show getting canceled?

Guess what the White house has to do with The Underground TV show getting canceled?

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Fans are heartbroken after finding out The Underground TV show is being canceled on the WGN America Network. Many are wondering why with such good ratings. Well is has to do with the Trump Administration’s close ties to Sinclair Broadcasting who recently brought WGN.

Sinclair Broadcast Group is set to reach over 70 percent of American households including local ABC, CBS and NBC affiliates through a $3.9 billion acquisition of Tribune Media.

Behind closed doors, lots of research and conversation the Trump Administration continues to push for a stronger right wing media playing field and Sinclair Broadcast Group has shown no shame with its passive aggressive conservative push and support of the Trump Administration.

Photo Credit: Media Matters

Sinclair has been meeting regularly with FCC Chairman Ajit Pai leading up to the Tribune acquisition. Pai, to get the deal done reinstated a measure that allowed media conglomerates to exceed the nation’s 39 percent cap on ownership. They also recently hired Boris Epshteyn touting he’s ““a surrogate and senior advisor to the Trump campaign.”

Many watchdog and media groups raise huge concerns about the merger, Free Press President and CEO Craig Aaron is one of them and responded,  “This proposed deal has the appearance of a quid pro quo. Sinclair has gone out of its way to boost Trump, praise his appointees and even hire his former spokespeople. Now they are cashing in. Chairman Pai likes to talk about getting rid of obsolete rules, yet here he is reinstating a rule with no technical justification just because it lets broadcast conglomerates skirt the law and expand their control over the nation’s airwaves.

The Sinclair Broadcast Group will own more than 200 TV stations nationwide through the acquisition of Tribune Media. This massive media merger would add 42 Tribune stations to the Sinclair empire, including stations in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, Denver and several other top-20 markets. Sinclair already owns 173 stations blanketing many other major cities, such as Baltimore, Minneapolis, Seattle, St. Louis and Washington, D.C., as well several stations in key electoral states like Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Bloomberg reports Sinclair Broadcast Group and Tribute are leading stock media.

Craig Aaron continued,  “It’s a scandal. Sinclair — the Trump-favoring broadcast mega-chain gets some FCC rules changed and expects others to be erased. All so that Sinclair can air its cookie-cutter newscasts to nearly 70 percent of the country’s population in local markets across the country.”

Back in December Jared Kushner, son-in-law of President Donald Trump and top White House adviser, reportedly told a gathering of business executives that Sinclair Broadcast Group’s local TV stations in Ohio reached more potential voters than CNN, the validation of a late-campaign strategy to turn to news anchors in swing states and sympathetic hosts on Fox News. “It’s math,” Kushner said.

According to Pew Center for Research polls indicate increasing distrust in the media, the public has more trust in local news than national outlets.

Aaron concluded, “Local broadcast television is still the most important local news source for many people, particularly in low-income and Spanish-speaking communities. The last thing local communities need is fewer perspectives and cookie-cutter content pushing an ideological agenda. But that’s what Trump’s FCC is set on doing: delivering favors that line the pockets of conservative outlets offering the administration favorable coverage.”

With midterms and the 2020 election ahead,  it will be interesting to see how much this acquisition will play in the game of who wins and who loses.

 

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