Michael Mechanic of Mother Jones says KRON is blurring the line between advertising and news. He says the station contacted a lawyer friend of his and offered to sell her air time. She was told she would appear as legal expert on what looks like a news program. The segment would have only a brief disclosure that it was advertising. Mechanic writes, “When the old media turns to obvious desperation measures, I just can’t help pondering the future of my profession and concluding, well, that we should be expecting even more fog in the future.”

UPDATE, July 10:KRON Acting General Manager Brian Greif e-mailed a response to the SFWeekly: “The material referred to in the article are COMMERCIALS. … These efforts have been in place at KRON for years. They are not new elements and meet all ethical and legal broadcast standards.”

Bay Area Media News


  1. KRON has been doing this for years, not that anybody would notice give their low ratings. The MJ piece says the lawyer was offered 5 minutes at $1,000. If KRON were to actually get that price ($200/minute), it would be one of the most expensive spots on that station. I don't even think they're getting $100/30 seconds in primetime.

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