4/5 – “This is extremely dangerous to our democracy”, says the danger to our democracy.

Still photo of video showing multiple Sinclair Stations repeating the same required propaganda. If you haven’t see it yet, click  here.  

A brief history: 

Sinclair Broadcasting is the media group that Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner cut a deal with during the 2016 elections to air “good” coverage for Trump and it continues to act as his defacto propaganda arm, like this glowing review of Anthony Scaramucchi’s “new approach” and “fresh perspective” for Trump’s White House.

It requires “must-run” right-wing segments on things like “fake news” from other stations and “terror alerts” when there is none.  Now, Trump, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, and the FCC are easing a law that prevents a single broadcaster from reaching more than 40% of the country’s population—reinstating a loophole that the Obama administration had gotten rid of—so that this hard-right propagandist could broadcast to well over 70% of the country.

In California,  Sinclair curently owns stations in Bakersfield, Chico, Redding, Eureka, Arcata, Fresno and Visalia in CA. Merging with Tribune Broadcasting would give them 42 more stations, including KTLA-5 in Los Angeles, KTXL-Fox40 in Sacramento and KSWB-Fox 5 in San Diego in CA, as well as two national stations, Antenna TV and This TV.

Actions – General: 

In order to maintain free and independent media, a concerned citizen has created a Google Drive folder with step-by-step instructions on how we can take a multi-pronged approach to fight back against Sinclair. (full campaign). Here are actions in order of difficulty. Everybody can do Actions #1 thru 3. Go as far down the list as you can. This will take a couple of days.

Action #1: Contact your Congresspeople

Contact your member of Congress (MoC)  and to support H.R. 3478 – “Local and Independent Television Protection Act of 2017” which eliminates the “discount” for UHF television stations that Sinclair is using to skirt past the broadcasting ownership rule in their effort to merge with Tribune Broadcasting.

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] and am asking Rep. [___] to support H.R. 3478.

(Note: Brownley and Carbajal are NOT on the list of cosigners yet.)

Contacts:
Rep. Julia Brownley: (CA-26): DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779
or Rep. Salud Carbajal: (CA-24): DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348
Other Rep Contacts: www.phoneyourrep.com

Action #2: Contact your State Reps.

Call them up and ask them what action they’re taking to prevent this illegal merger. If individual states bar Sinclair one by one, we can prevent their takeover of key CA markets without federal cooperation.
Objection #1: This is a federal thing.
Answer: Yeah, so’s net neutrality but that didn’t stop CA Senate Bill 822.
Objection #2: The deadline has passed for creating new bills.
Answer: Scoop out a dead-on-arrival bill and put this in instead. You guys are the professionals. Make this work.

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] and am asking State Assemblymember/Sen. [___] to support all efforts to prevent the merger of Sinclair Broadcasting and Tribune Broadcasting.

Contacts:
State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (SD-19):
SAC (916) 651-4019, SB (805) 965-0862, OX (805)988-1940 email
State Assemblymember Monique Limón: (CA-37): SAC (916) 319-2037, SB (805) 564-1649, VTA (805) 641-3700 email
Not your people?: findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov.

Action #3: Contact our Attorney General

Ask CA Attorney General Xavier Becerra to join his counterparts in Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts and Rhode Island who wrote that the merger “will increase market consolidation above the acceptable statutory limit, reduce consumer choices, and threaten the diversity of voices in media.” The Coalition to Save Local Media has already sent Becerra this letter. Now let him hear from you.

Contact:
Email
Postcards: Attorney General’s Office, California Department of Justice
Attn: Public Inquiry Unit, P.O. Box 944255, Sacramento, CA 94244-2550
Phone: Public Inquiry Unit: Voice: (916) 210-6276 or
(Toll-free in California) (800) 952-5225

Action #4: Postcard followup!

Difficulty rises because now you need a postcard and a stamp!
Follow up your calls (call first!) with postcards to your federal representatives. (Addresses here) and ask them what actions they are taking to prevent the monopolization of local news stations. Keep your message concise and to the point. Here are some helpful facts you may want to include:

  • Be sure to include that Congress must reject the Sinclair-Tribune merger.
  • They need to support HR 3478, the Local and Independent Television Protection Act.
  • With this merger, the reach of Sinclair’s racist news coverage will be dramatically increased from 38% of American households to 72%.
  • This merger would make Sinclair the single largest broadcaster in the United States with over 230 stations and 40 in the top 50 markets.
  • A merger between Sinclair and Tribune threatens a free media and the public interest.
  • Sinclair’s merger with Tribune would stifle independent media voices and localism by owning more than one of the “Big Four” stations in 42 media markets.
  • Sinclair’s track record of cutting costs by duplicating programming on multiple stations within a single market shortchanges viewers by putting profits ahead of service.

Action #5: Ask your state reps to boycott Sinclair stations.

Contact your legislators and ask them to publicly boycott Sinclair stations, like Amy McGrath is doing here.

Amy

Minimal Script: I’m calling from [zip code] and am asking State Assemblymember/Sen. [___] to pull all campaign funding from any Sinclair-owned station.

Contacts:
State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson (SD-19):
SAC (916) 651-4019, SB (805) 965-0862, OX (805)988-1940 email
State Assemblymember Monique Limón: (CA-37): SAC (916) 319-2037, SB (805) 564-1649, VTA (805) 641-3700 email
Not your state people?: findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov.

Rep. Julia Brownley: (CA-26): DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779
or Rep. Salud Carbajal: (CA-24): DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348
Other Rep. Contacts: www.phoneyourrep.com

Senator Feinstein: DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430
and Senator Harris: DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884
Other Senator Contacts: www.phoneyourrep.com

Action #6: Boycott local news stations

Contact your local news station(s) & let them know that you will be tuning out if they become  (or already are) a source of Sinclair Broadcast Group’s propaganda.
Here are the CA stations that would be added…
Los Angeles:  KTLA-5, 5800 Sunset Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90028
Main station phone: 323-460-5500
Email: http://ktla.com/2014/06/13/contact-ktla-5-station-management/
San Diego: FOX 5 Studios, 7191 Engineer Rd., San Diego, CA 92111
FOX 5 Phone: 858-492-9269
Feedback: kswbreceptionist@fox5sandiego.com
Sacramento: KTXL-TV, 4655 Fruitridge Road, Sacramento California 95820-5299
Main phone: (916) 454-4422
Email: Leigh.White@FOX40.com (Leigh White, General Manager)

Action #7: Boycott a major advertiser

Tell one major advertiser on Sinclair what you think. Proctor and Gamble are already gathering comments from customers and re-evaluating their advertising with Sinclair. We can email them, adapting this sample letter.

“Because Sinclair Broadcasting  attempts to subvert freedom assured us through the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution, I am boycotting all Proctor & Gamble products and instructing my financial managers to relinquish holdings I have in PG, and encouraging friends, associates and social media contacts to do likewise until PG publicly states it is immediately canceling all advertisements with Sinclair. We need our major corporations to stand loudly in defense of Freedom of Speech since our departments of justice, governance, and regulations are failing to do so. You can be one of our heroes now.”

Use this list to contact other advertisers.

Action #8: Root out the other advertisers!

This is the highest level difficulty project here. Finding all the advertisers for Sinclair Broadcasting less straight-forward that it was for the Laura Ingraham show. We need hunters with a computer and some time. Here’s one list of documented advertisers. However, there are a lot more. This is a crowd-sourced project and you’re welcome to join in.
The detailed instruction sheet is here. Here’s the gist of the process:

  • Locate your closest Sinclair-owned stations (here).
  • Pick a station and continue on through the instructions to step #2.
  • Find out one of the advertiser’s Twitter handles (ie: @LendingClub)
  • Compose a tweet to the advertiser. Like this or a variation:
    • @fundrise Did you know you are advertising with Sinclair Broadcasting and contributing to the demise of our Democracy by supporting GOVERNMENT PROPAGANDA? We ask that you immediately CANCEL YOUR AD BUY with Sinclair Broadcasting. #BoycottSinclair
      @CharlesSchwab Did you know you’re advertising with Sinclair Broadcasting + contributing to the demise of Democracy by supporting GOVERNMENT PROPAGANDA? Pull your media buy from Sinclair Broadcasting. WE Americans have ZERO TOLERANCE for propaganda #BoycottSinclair
    • Important! Include the Hashtag #BoycottSinclair
    • Attach a screenshot of the company’s ad WITH the logo of the TV/Radio station
  • Add each Sinclair Broadcasting TV/Radio station call letters, market and website URL to the Google Sheet in this folder.
  • Submit these advertisers to this site and this list for accumulation and display for others. Help by filling in contact details, (phone, addresses, email) for people to contact. 

Check this list and create twitter and email messages to advertisers.

Action #9: Electronic Petitions!

Not as powerful as phone calls when addressed to our current government but another way to be heard.

Tell FCC no to Merger (Freepress.net)

Act.mpowerchange merger (here)

Countable: (here)

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