PBS staff ask publication to stop photographing protester getting handcuffed


After a man interrupted PBS’ annual meeting in San Francisco Tuesday to protest David Koch’s presence on WGBH’s board, PBS staff asked a reporter for public-media publication Current to “stop photographing as the protester was put against a wall and handcuffed.”

Dru Sefton reports the man yelled into a microphone that was soon cut off, and “Security led the protester out of the hotel.”

“The incident that took place at this morning’s session was extremely unfortunate,” PBS spokesperson Anne W. Bentley tells Poynter in an email. “It is our understanding that it is being handled by the hotel in accordance with their standard policy and procedures. We have no additional information.”

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  • ljatlanta

    I’m not certain whether Ms. Bentley is referring to the disruption, or the staffers asking the photographer to stop covering the disruption, as unfortunate. Demonstrations happen, and PBS has a right to eject people who disrupt their events, no matter how noble the demonstrators consider their cause.

    But I think it’s poor form for a news organization (which is how I regard PBS) to interfere with reporters. The incident was going to get coverage, photos or no photos, and it would have at the very least been better public relations for an organization which supports transparency to avoid the appearance of blacking out news.

    Larry Felton Johnson