Did WKMG Channel 6 Use The Rating Sweep Mentality To Slant State Attorney Aramis Ayala?
By Lawrence A Robinson
The content in the article and video title, "State Attorney paying PR firm with taxpayer money" from WKMG Channel 6 is nothing more than gobbly-gue, but the heading leads you to believe that the sky is falling.
Was this investigative report a 'sweeps week' project?
What is Sweeps Week anyway? Sweeps week is when networks set their advertising rates. Rates for the two minutes of local ad time are based on sweeps, which run for just four weeks four times a year and survey 210 local television markets. They usually take place in November, February, May and July.
These sweeps are important, because advertising rates are based on the results of these sweeping surveys. The more people watch a show, the more money a station can charge for the commercials during that show. News shows are usually wholly owned by the local station and much of their income is generated from the locally produced news show.
So it is obvious why WKMG Channel 6 want to get as many eyes on their news show as possible during sweeps week. It's all about the money and has little to do with truth and honesty.
When you see a 'Special Investigative' report that deals in foolishness, you know it must be sweeps week.
WKMG Channel 6 wanted to hype this report as much as possible but they had to be careful and not alienate their paying advertisers while offending as few of the viewing general public as possible.
State Attorney Aramis Ayala is a good target. She is a duly elected State Attorney who supprised everyone with her victory and is loved by her constituents. SA Ayala made a controversial decision, that is supported by over 50% of the population which created a hot topic inside a toxic situation. Gov. Rick Scott supports the minority viewpoint but has majority authority.
The situation makes for great fodder during sweeps week and WKMG Channel 6 takes notice. WKMG Channel 6 decided to decimate SA Ayala to gain extra ratings.
WKMG Channel 6 took nothing statements and made them into salacious targeted bombs against SA Ayala. Statements like: 'Since the State Attorney's Office is funded almost entirely by state and local tax dollars, invoices from Ayala's legal team and public relations advisors will likely be paid with public money.'
The station didn't mention that the Governor's Office is funded almost entirely by state tax dollars. (Except, of course for the private money that came from the Scott's high jacking of MediCare, and maybe some came from diverting tax dollars to his wife's business, but I digress.)
The fact is, WKMG Channel 6 slanted information and omitted real observances solely for the purpose of ratings so they can charge more money for advertising spots. Unfortunately, this action comes at the expense of presenting fair and honest news to our community. They should be ashamed.