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On the house: Fox aired 107 ads for its coverage of tea party protests over 10 days

Posted in Main Blog (All Posts) on April 18th, 2009 4:39 am by HL

On the house: Fox aired 107 ads for its coverage of tea party protests over 10 days

From April 6 to April 15, Fox News aired at least 107 commercial promotions for their coverage of the tea party protests that took place on April 15. As Media Matters for America has documented, Fox News aggressively promoted the events in recent weeks, encouraging viewers to get involved with tea party protests across the country. Indeed, Fox News repeatedly described them as “FNC Tax Day Tea Parties.” On April 15, four of the network’s hosts broadcast live from various tea parties.

Of the 107 ads, 58 were 10-second spots promoting a specific Fox News program that would be covering the events. The programs promoted in the 10-second spots were: Your World with Neil Cavuto, Glenn Beck, The O’Reilly Factor, Hannity, and On the Record with Greta Van Susteren. Of those five, only The O’Reilly Factor did not offer live coverage of the protests from one of the tea party sites. Forty-nine of the ads aired were 30-second spots that promoted Fox News’ “fair and balanced network coverage — live” of the tea parties.

From the 30-second spot promoting Fox News’ coverage of the tea parties:

ANNOUNCER: April 15th, all across the country, Americans are making their voices heard.

In California, Texas, Georgia, Washington, D.C., citizens are standing up, saying “no” to more taxes and demanding real economic solutions.

April 15th: As tea parties sweep the nation on tax day, we’re there with total fair and balanced network coverage — live. What is the fate of our nation? We report. You decide.

From the 10-second spot promoting Glenn Beck‘s coverage of the tea parties:

ANNOUNCER: Taking a stand at the Alamo: Citizens revolt against more taxes and demand change now. Plus, Ted Nugent fires back at the government. Glenn is live at the tea party in Texas.

The majority of the ads — 58 — ran on April 14 and 15:

A list of all the commercials coded is available here.


The study counted every commercial promoting Fox News’ coverage of the April 15 tea parties that aired during Fox News original programming between 6 a.m. and midnight ET from April 6 to April 15. Each commercial was identified as either a 10-second spot or a 30-second spot. Commercials that ran during rebroadcasts of shows were not included. All the commercials that ran during Fox News original programming were viewed on digital video.

Below are the 10-second spots that ran on Fox:

  • 4/14/09, Live Desk, 4/14/09, 1:49:40 — 1:49:50 [Cavuto spot]
  • 4/14/09, Live Desk, 2:18:58 — 2:19:08 [Beck spot]
  • 4/14/09, Studio B With Shepard Smith, 3:15:57 — 3:16:07 [Hannity spot]
  • 4/14/09, Special Report With Bret Baier, 6:48:10 — 6:48:20 [Greta spot]
  • 4/14/09, On the Record, 10:47:18 — 10:47:28 [O’Reilly spot]

Below is the 30-second spot that ran on Fox:

  • 4/13/09, Glenn Beck, 5:44:34 — 5:45:04

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