DirecTV to drop rightwing TV network One America News

37
3
DirecTV to drop rightwing TV network One America News

Mississippi Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith speaks to a reporter from One America News Network OANN from a bus window after a tour around the U.S. border on a Texas Highway Patrol vessel in Mission, Texas, March 26, 2021. WASHINGTON, Jan 15, Reuters - The largest satellite provider in the United States said late Friday it would drop One America News, a move that could cripple the rightwing TV network, which is known for conspiracies about the 2020 election.

A Reuters investigation revealed that OAN founders at&T inspired him to create the network, and that DirecTV is 70% owned by AT&T. The court testimony shows that OAN receives almost all of its revenue from DirecTV.

The Reuters report called for AT&T and DirecTV to drop OAN, a favorite of former President Donald Trump, because the network has become a source of false claims about the election and COVID vaccines.

On Thursday, President Joe Biden said that COVID conspiracy theories are putting lives at risk. Biden said that they would make a special appeal to social media companies and media outlets: Please deal with the misinformation that is on your shows. OAN is owned by San Diego-based Herring Networks, a family of conservative tech entrepreneurs. Robert Herring Sr did not respond to requests for comment by email and phone. He said that his network provided an important voice in an interview with Reuters last year. If I think I m right, I just go for it, he said.

According to testimony by OAN s accountant reviewed by Reuters, DirecTV provided 90% of the conservative network's revenue.

After a routine internal review, we informed Herring Networks that we do not plan to enter a new contract when our current agreement ends, DirecTV said in a statement.

The OAN-DirecTV contract is about to expire in the next few months. In April 2017, DirecTV began airing OAN in April 2017, a deal that began shortly after OAN and AT&T settled a lawsuit over oral promises during negotiations.

Some conservatives expressed outrage on Twitter that DirecTV and AT&T planned to drop OAN. The former Fox News host Lou Dobbs said that Corporate Media is crushing what little dissent remains.

The pro-Trump right has powerful outlets on television and online, including Fox News, the conservative cable news outlet founded by Rupert Murdoch.

Liberals cheered the news. NAACP President Derrick Johnson called it a victory for us and the future of democracy. Johnson added that at a time when we are seeing our rights infringed upon, OAN only seeks to create further division. We must choose truth over lies and common sense over hysteria. The news comes after a lawsuit filed by two Georgia election workers accusing OAN and Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani of lying about them in the aftermath of the 2020 presidential election. The claims were debunked by state authorities. OAN has denied it has done anything wrong.

DirecTV did not elaborate on why it planned to drop OAN. An AT&T spokesman said earlier in the day that the company airs many news channels that offer viewpoints across the political spectrum. The Reuters investigative report in October cited sworn statements by OAN founder and son testified that the inspiration for the conservative network came from AT&T executives.

The elder Herring said they told us they wanted a conservative network. They had only one, which was Fox News, and they had seven others on the other leftwing side. When they said that, I jumped to it and built one. A transcript shows that if Herring Networks were to lose or not renew on DirecTV in 2020, the company would go out of business, an OAN lawyer told the court.