CBS Stands Behind Acceptance Of Focus On Family Spot
Says it will consider all "responsibly produced ads" for remaining slots in Super Bowl
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 1/26/2010 2:13:13 PM
"We have for some time moderated our approach to advocacy submissions after it became apparent that our stance did not reflect public sentiment or industry norms on the issue," CBS said in an e-mailed statement Tuesday. "In fact, most media outlets have accepted advocacy ads for some time. At CBS, our standards and practices process continues to adhere to a process that ensures all ads -- on all sides of an issue -- are appropriate for air.
"We will continue to consider responsibly produced ads from all groups for the few remaining spots in Super Bowl XLIV," the network said.
That came in response to the announcement that the Women's Media Center, National Organization For Women and more than two dozen other groups have launched a campaign to pressure CBS into pulling a Super Bowl "pro-life" ad bought by Focus on the Family.
That campaign includes a letter it delivered to CBS today, according to a spokeswoman, and e-mails its members are sending today to CBS, the NFL, and advertisers in the game.
The letter calls on CBS to reject what the groups call an anti-choice ad that advances Focus on the Family's Agenda.
They argue that CBS has rejected advocacy ads in the past, including from PETA, MoveOn.org and the United Church of Christ.
The spot in question is expected to feature Florida Gators quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow and his mother talking about how she refused to have an abortion after she was advised to do so by doctors.
The NFL backed the CBS decision. "CBS standards and practices department approved the content of the ad as appropriate for the audience. We take no issue with CBS' decision," said NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy.
A CBS spokesperson had told B&C's Claire Atkinson last week that the network had vetted the spot's script and did not expect to have any trouble with the video.
"It is not inflammatory or divisive," a CBS exec told Atkinson last week.
I am so proud of CBS for showing the wonderful commercial of Tim Tebow and his Mother. Very warm. How could anyone think this is "violence against women"? Too many crazy people in this world.
Kathleen Johnston - 2/9/2010 3:26:08 PM EST
Thank you running the Pro-Life Super Bowl ad. Like one viewer wrote, if the people don't like it, then leave the room until it's over, or they to lazy to get up from the couch. Why do we alway support the minority when majority counts? Thank you for letting our voice be heard. We focus on the family.
Charles and Mary Ann Brinkmann - 2/7/2010 7:06:07 PM EST
CBS should be commended for standing by their decision. I think that it is about time that the media allowed conservative views to be aired. For far too long, the majority has had to endure ads and programs that only presented liberal special interest views as the "right way". If "their way" is how it should be, why are they so afraid of a 30 second spot being successful in influencing millions of people to reconsider their opinion. Or is it that they have been so in control of dictating what we do or do not see or hear that they are afraid of losing that control? If people don't like the ad, do what the rest of us have had to do for years, walk out of the room!!!
Curtis Frye - 2/1/2010 10:04:23 AM EST
henrietta - 1/31/2010 7:02:58 AM EST
I commend CBS for being tolerant of this ad.
It's great that they are not being intolerant and ignoring this ad just because it supports an un-popular view. Since the ad does not break any of the station's guidlines, the station is doing the right thing in allowing the ad to run.
Timothy Lipp - 1/30/2010 4:44:15 PM EST
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