I'm not going to lie. As a producer with pretty liberal views, it's been difficult to include fair, accurate and balanced news regarding Donald Trump, especially as it pertains to fake news. As soon as I began to weigh this theme, I thought of our class on January 12th, the day after Trump held his first press conference since Election Day. We had a class exercise where we had to select and order a series of stories for a hypothetical show.
Trump's presser was first on almost everyone's list. But not mine. I didn't even include it. Not because I don't agree with his political or social views (which I don't), but because of the portion of the press conference he dedicated to fake news, which turned out to be one of the biggest talking points in the aftermath. In particular, it was when he pointed at CNN's Jim Acosta and said, "Not you, you're fake news."
Now we all know CNN is not fake news. But when the president exclaims that it is on national television, some people are led to believe he is right. And by publishing a story about Trump's claim, said claim reaches a bigger audience, and the bigger the audience the more people who will potentially be led to believe something that isn't true. That is not something that I wanted to cause, even hypothetically.
This is not the first time I've wanted to leave out a Trump-related story, but it's the one that I think best represents the conflict we are discussing with this post. So I wouldn't say my issue has been a failure to provide both sides of a story or issue, but perhaps my hesitance to include it altogether.
The solution has been and will be relatively simple and easy; there are four competent and smart producers on our team— and something that is too important not to include in our newscast will not be left out. I might be biased here but I really think our team has done a great job of providing both sides to each and every story we have covered, and I intend to help keep it that way.
So I think my issue is really how I cope with including stories and/or viewpoints I disagree with. But I'm not worried that those stories and viewpoints won't be there.