Fox News Channel has had a rough few weeks PR-wise, and this isn’t going to help. Boston’s Fox affiliate WFXT-TV is dropping the word “Fox” from its newscast branding — guess why. According to the Boston Globe, it’s an effort to avoid viewers confusing it with Fox News.
The station generally refers to itself as Fox 25 and will continue to do so — but its newscasts will be branded as “Boston 25 News” starting April 24. The Globe said the station’s ratings have been sagging and that more than two years of research found that 41% of Beantown-area news consumers believed that the channel leaned conservative. This in a city that voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump in November by more than 5-to-1 (81.7%-14.2%). Also, Massachusetts is one of just states where every county voted for Clinton. Hawaii is the other.
“The perception of what our TV news station does is not what we do,” Fox 25 general manager Tom Raponi told the Globe. “They perceive us to be part of the Fox News family.”
The station was a Fox O&O until 2014, when it was transferred to Cox Media Group as part of a station swap. Fox 25 has seen several on-air personalities leave the station since the ownership change.