Media Blog

A Real Public Service — or Ratings Ploy?

AP:

WASHINGTON – The ABC affiliate in Washington is airing a two-part series that takes a close — and unobscured — look at breast self-exams. The series is airing during the fall “sweeps” period critical for a TV station’s ad revenue, prompting concern by a parental watchdog group. But WJLA insists it’s not just a naked attempt to boost the ratings.

The two segments include clinical demonstrations of self-exams, and the breasts of the two volunteers are not blurred. They were to air during the 5 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts Thursday and Friday.

WJLA officials said the segments are providing an important service because many women don’t know how to properly check their breasts.

“In talking to women, we found out there really weren’t a lot of women who knew how to do self breast exams,” station manager Bill Lord said.

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