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White House Forces Media to Use Screenshots Generated by FOX News

Reported by Marie Therese - January 13, 2007 -

Yesterday (January 12th) the White House Correspondents' Association sent a strong letter of protest to White House Counselor Dan Bartlett, expressing their opposition to the fact still photographers, who are in the White House pool, were not allowed admission to the President's speech last Wednesday night. Instead, media outlets were required to use a "screenshot" generated from the FOX News feed. The full text of the letter is printed below. I expect that we will hear about this on FOX News, with the signers of the letter cast as left-wing crazies who hate President Bush.

January 12, 2007

Mr. Dan Bartlett
Counselor to the President,
The White House
Washington, D.C.

Dear Dan,

On behalf of the White House Correspondents’ Association, and in conjunction with the White House News Photographers Association, we are writing to express our outrage that still pool photographers were denied access to the White House library on Wednesday evening. As you know, following weeks of preparation and the White House build-up leading up to the presidential address, this was a significant foreign policy speech. Forcing newspapers and magazines to rely on a “screen grab” photo from the Fox News network pool feed is simply unacceptable.

In recent months, there has been a growing pattern of restricting pool photographers to White House events, but the situation Wednesday night for this important speech to the nation is the most glaring.

We expressed our concern to Tony Snow and Dana Perino earlier today, and join the WHNPA in asking that this practice end. These photographers provide a vital service to wires, magazines and newspapers around the world, while also serving as a lasting historical record to the events of our times. In addition, a White House photo release is never an acceptable substitute for independent news coverage. Therefore, in our strongest terms possible, we want to express our disappointment that a decision was made to keep even a single pool photographer from the room, and ask that it never happen again.

Regards,

Board of Directors - WHCA
Steven Scully, C-SPAN
Ann Compton, ABC News
Jennifer Loven, Associated Press
Peter Maer, CBS News
Steve Holland, Reuters
Doug Mills, New York Times
Ken Walsh, US News & World Report
Ken Herman, Cox Newspapers
Mike Allen, TIME


N. B. Hat tip to "Anonymous" for the lead.