KTVB Ch-7 misinforms with “cruising” sex story

Jody May-Chang©
June 28, 2009 PrideDEPOT.com

Mark Johnson Ysabel Bilbao KTVB Channel 7 Reporter Treasure Vally Boise Idaho NBC affiliate Gay CruisingPrideDEPOT.com recently reported on the Treasure Valley’s CBS affiliate, KBCI Channel 2’s sensational and inflammatory version of the facts surrounding the arrest of Wayne Olin, 65, who allegedly exposed himself to a Garden City undercover cop in a wooded area near the Boise River.

Olin’s felony solicitation charge was reduced the day after his arrest to misdemeanor indecent exposure. KBCI covered the story as a “Gay Sex Sting” that resulted in the arrest of Olin who has never been identified as a gay man.

PrideDEPOT.com contends that KBCI”s coverage was over inflated and the station”s news judgment was flawed.

This incendiary reporting of a non-news story was not limited to only KBCI. The same arrest took on an entirely different scope and scale from the NBC affiliate, KTBV Channel 7.

Channel 7 exploited the incident with inflammatory coverage that started with Olin then launched into unrelated issues seemingly aimed at promoting misinformation and loathing of gay men.

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KBCI TV-2 manufactures “gay news” for ratings

H. Lukas Green and Jody May-Chang©
June 25, 2009 PrideDEPOT.com

The recent arrest of two elderly men for allegedly attempting to engage in sex with an undercover Garden City police officer became the top story at KBCI TV-2 in Boise as the station launched into a sensationalized version of the facts surrounding the incidents.

KBCI TV-2 manufacture The arrests of Wayne Olin, 65 (left), and an unnamed 80-year-old, took place in a heavily wooded area adjacent to the Boise River in an area known as Plantation Island. Rather than simply report the news, the local CBS affiliate decided to hype the story and push it out as gay story.

KBCI Reporter Adam Rodriguez and Managing Editor, Paul Fredericks, both contacted PrideDEPOT.com for an on-camera comment in an attempt to gin up this story as a gay rights issue.

We chose to ignore these requests because it was apparent from the angle that the station was taking that they were manufacturing this into a gay rights story where none exists. The news value of the story amounts to two adult men who may not have exercised the best judgment, but it did not elevate itself to anything having a direct impact on Idaho’s LGBT community.

Fredericks and Rodriguez apparently saw this differently. They wanted to push this out as a gay issue in time for their evening shows. The story ran for at least four consecutive broadcasts along with sensationalized teasers for later broadcasts.

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