There’s a big buzz brewing over select media outlets being blocked from a closed-door briefing given by White House Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, on Friday, February 24. The heated response from CNN can be read in the below tweet about the media blockage.
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) February 24, 2017
CNN called being blocked by the Trump White House an unacceptable development — outrightly calling the media blockage retaliation for reporting facts that the Trump administration doesn’t like. CNN vowed to continue reporting despite being blocked from Spicer’s gaggle.
As seen in the top photo above, reporters lined up, waiting and hoping for a chance to attend the briefing with Spicer at the White House in Washington on Friday. The off-camera briefing has caused lots of backlash from members of the media, after there was a selection certain media outlets that were allowed to attend the White House briefing, while other news outlets couldn’t attend.
The White House blocked CNN, The New York Times, Politico, The Los Angeles Times and others from the press briefing, according to Variety.
According to Variety, publications such as The Associated Press and Time refused to be involved in the briefing — one that the White House invited CBS, ABC, and NBC to attend. The New York Post said that the AP and Time stood in solidarity with other blocked members of the press — such as The Daily Mail and the BBC.
The backlash over publications such as Breitbart, The Washington Times and One America News Network being invited to attend a briefing with Spicer that denied access to The New York Times, CNN, the Los Angeles Times and Politico is being witnessed on social media.
The Facebook page of the Los Angeles Times posted an update about the White House blocking them and other press from the briefing, noting that Brietbart was allowed into the press briefing. Plenty of the publication’s readers are reacting with the “shocked” emoji on Facebook.
“CNN, New York Times and Los Angeles Times were not allowed in the news briefing. Breitbart was.”
The same publication notes that the media blockage occurred after President Trump called the media “fake news” and “an enemy of the people.”
The fact that the White House banned certain reporters from off-camera briefing with Spicer has been noted by Politico, which reported that the briefing turned into an off-camera briefing in Spicer’s office.
According to the publication, the White House “blackballed” news outlets that began to break news stories about Mr. Trump’s alleged ties to Russia. President Trump took to the stage of the CPAC conference to declare the media “the enemy of the people,” and hours later, the blockage was put into place.
Not all media members are focused on Mr. Trump and the White House. Former President Barack Obama was seen in New York City and treated like a rockstar, noted Mashable, declaring the reaction some people gave Mr. Obama with excitement.
Publications around the world reported about the White House blocking certain news outlets from Spicer’s media briefing, all the while allowing others. As reported by the Independent, several “legacy” and high-profile outlets were blocked — a move that has gained plenty of criticism.
According to a statement from Dean Baquet, the New York Times Executive Editor, free media access is critical.
“Nothing like this has ever happened at the White House in our long history of covering multiple administrations of different parties. We strongly protest the exclusion of The New York Times and the other news organizations. Free media access to a transparent government is obviously of crucial national interest.”
As reported by MSN, the White House Correspondents’ Association also was critical of the media blockage, with Jeff Mason, president of the association, protesting the blockage of the free press.
“The WHCA board is protesting strongly against how today’s gaggle is being handled by the White House. We encourage the organizations that were allowed in to share the material with others in the press corps who were not. The board will be discussing this further with White House staff.”
[Featured Image by Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP Images]