For the 2018 elections, the station group increases its coverage with more than 50 multiplatform special events, more resources for investigative reporting and fact checking among other steps.
Hearst Television today said it is “significantly expanding and updating its pledge to devote extensive television and digital news coverage of election discourse” throughout its 26 TV markets across the United States.
To help with the added campaign and election coverage, Hearst Television will be adding resources at its Washington bureau, which was first established more than two decades ago. The additional resources will be focused “on investigative insights in support of the group’s commitment to holding politicians and candidates accountable,” tracking their positions and truth-checking their messages.
Also under the group-wide “Commitment 2018” banner, Hearst Television stations have pledged to provide analysis on all their media platforms of a defined major issue each month leading up to Election Day.
Hearst stations began 2018 with an in-depth look at health care in their communities and will tackle topics spanning immigration to infrastructure to gun rights, among others. This monthly-topic commitment will be in addition to the company’s longstanding commitment of time dedicated to political coverage during the 30 days leading up to primary and general elections.
In addition to expanded story coverage on stations’ websites, Hearst Television will extend digital coverage of the issues to its recently launched Stitch platform (watchstitch.com). “Stitch represents the best local stories that resonate nationally — highlighting great journalism in Hearst Television communities and bringing insightful reports to a wider audience,” the company said.
The Commitment 2018 promise also includes more than 50 special multiplatform events — including debates, issues-focused specials and town halls — of which each station pledges at least two.
“Today’s political climate continues to demonstrate the importance of grass roots issues and reporting,” said Jordan Wertlieb, president of Hearst Television. “Our commitment to provide in-depth local perspective on the issues that matter to our viewers differentiates our stations from the plethora of media sources focused on national issues and agendas.”
“As local journalists, it’s our responsibility to drill down on issues of specific importance to local viewers in a relatable manner,” said Barbara Maushard, Hearst Television senior vice president, news. “Our viewers in Albuquerque, California and Florida are keenly interested in developments related to immigration; our viewers in Pittsburgh are particularly interested in infrastructure; our viewers in every one of our 26 markets care about the economy and education as it impacts them.
“It is our commitment to deliver this information to our communities, adhering to well-researched facts and avoiding drama and intrigue that cloud the issues.”
Hearst Television owns and operates television and radio stations serving 26 media markets across 39 states reaching over 21 million U.S. television households.