AT&T is reportedly One America Information’ main monetary backer



Telecoms have lengthy been accused of attempting to skew politics, however a brand new report suggests AT&T might need gone additional than most. In keeping with The Verge, Reuters stories that AT&T is a significant backer for One America Information Community (OAN), a right-wing media outlet YouTube quickly banned final November for spreading misinformation. Whereas a number of TV suppliers carry the channel, an OAN accountant testified in 2020 that 90 % of OAN father or mother Herring Networks’ income, tens of hundreds of thousands of {dollars}, got here by means of offers with AT&T-owned platforms that included DirecTV.
OAN founder Robert Herring individually testified that AT&T executives impressed him to launch the community in 2013 after a media panorama with comparatively few conservative retailers. Courtroom paperwork additionally indicated that AT&T provided to purchase a 5 % fairness stake in OAN and Herring’s life-style channel AWE, though the 2 ended up selecting a special settlement.
OAN even claimed that one AT&T government, Aaron Slator, provided to place the channel on DirecTV in return for assist lobbying for the satellite tv for pc broadcaster’s 2014 merger. The Herring household additionally supposedly met FCC officers to speak in regards to the merger and communicate properly of AT&T in information tales. AT&T has denied making the supply linked to Slator, and an OAN lawsuit alleging a breach of that deal supposedly led to AT&T including OAN to DirecTV’s choice.
AT&T rejected claims of undue affect in responses to Reuters and The Verge. The provider maintained that DirecTV “doesn’t dictate” channel programming, and that DirecTV merger help was “by no means a situation of or a part of” any content material carriage settlement. In a Twitter assertion, AT&T maintained it “by no means had a monetary curiosity” in OAN and that the choice to hold the community was now in DirecTV’s arms.
The priority, as you may think, is that AT&T might have contributed to the unfold of misinformation with out being held to account like on-line suppliers and different corporations. On prime of YouTube suspending OAN following a violation of COVID-19 misinformation guidelines, voting machine maker Dominion sued the community in August this yr over unproven claims of election fraud. If the report is correct, there may simply be stress on AT&T to distance itself from OAN and focus extra on its core providers than politics.

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