Fox News host Bill O’Reilly employs producers charged with the specific mission of ambushing and harassing those who have said critical things about him. O’Reilly has not only stalked and accosted ThinkProgress deputy editor Amanda Terkel, but he has also targeted at least 40 other individuals in much the same way.
If O’Reilly wanted statements from his opponents, there are alternative, more responsible ways of eliciting responses. Amanda was never asked to appear on The O’Reilly Factor, nor did the show ever reach out to ThinkProgress for comment prior to their decision to stalk her.
This isn’t “journalism” — it’s a mafia-style harassment operation. It’s a campaign of intimidation and an unethical practice that amounts to an invasion of privacy. As Amanda said of her own altercation with O’Reilly’s crew: “It was incredibly disturbing. The rest of the weekend, I was constantly looking over my shoulder, wondering how long they had been following me, if they’re still following me.”
We need to shut down the O’Reilly Harassment Machine. And the best way to do that is to demand that O’Reilly’s corporate advertisers — those who are helping to fund this operation — issue a clear statement explaining their opposition to O’Reilly’s brand of “ambush journalism.”
Click here to tell O’Reilly’s advertisers to stop supporting the O’Reilly Harassment Machine.
AT&T; has responded with this statement from spokesman Michael Coe:
AT&T; continually evaluates our advertising efforts to make certain that we are reaching consumers in effective and meaningful ways. We also make every effort to ensure that the content of the programming on the stations and outlets on which we advertise is in keeping with our corporate values and philosophy.
No word on whether O’Reilly’s Harassment Machine is “in keeping with” AT&T;’s “corporate values and philosophy.”
,Mr. Coe from AT&T; called to complain about our automated email campaign, saying it is “harassment.” ThinkProgress noted that if he thinks receiving e-mails is harassment, he will surely think that stalking and accosting a person on vacation is outrageous. Hopefully, AT&T; and the other advertisers will use their influence over O’Reilly to urge him to end his practice of “ambush journalism.”