When Fox News announced the “inaugural summit” for its streaming service Fox Nation, the Erik Wemple Blog took note. Last year, we paid more than $60 for a one-year membership to the service, which furnishes documentaries bashing Democratic politicians, book chats, breakdowns of prime-time programming on Fox News, plus a lot more. When it launched, the Erik Wemple Blog felt that we’d overpaid, considering that the teaser copy for the offerings barely approximated English. But hey, membership in Fox Nation at least conveyed a perk when it came to that inaugural summit: “FOX Nation members will receive an exclusive invitation with a link to register for the event before it is available to the public.”
So the Erik Wemple Blog signed up. In response, we got this cheery notice from Eventbrite:
All was well.
Then, on Tuesday, we received this note from Events Manager Alexis Bott:
Dear Mr. Wemple
We saw your name on the FOX Nation Summit RSVP list and wanted to remind you this event is closed to the press, so we will not be able to accommodate you.
You will be able to watch the program on FOX Nation. Additional details can be found here: http://press.foxnews.com/2019/04/fox-nation-to-host-first-annual-fan-summit-in-scottsdale-arizona-on-tuesday-may-14th/
Remind? When did Fox News first apprise us that the event was closed to the press? Wasn’t it an event for subscribers? Bott responded: “Forgive the word choice, my intent was to make you aware that this event was closed to the press. You will be able to watch the summit on FOX Nation. Thank you for your interest.”
Based on this disinvitation, the Erik Wemple Blog posed the following questions to Fox News:
Is this the way you treat subscribers?
Has Fox News vetted every reserved person to determine whether they may just work in the press?
If the event is barring journalists, is it also prohibiting journalistic acts – such as tweets quoting the personalities, videos and pictures shared on social media and the like?
What is the rationale for barring the press to an event that’s being livestreamed anyhow?
If press isn’t allowed at the event, is that an assertion that the Fox News people on the premises aren’t press?
We’ll update this post if we receive a response.
Read more by Erik Wemple: