Remember when Ben Affleck was all sad a couple of months ago when he found out that his family owned slaves on the PBS show Finding Your Roots and wanted to have just that part stricken from the episode? PBS has suspended the show for actually complying with Affleck on editing out facts about his family tree.
According to Vulture, PBS investigated the incident when the Sony hacks ordeal happened and found that Affleck asked the show’s host, Henry Louis Gates Jr., to remove it from the episode. Gates then emailed Sony exec Michael Lynton for advice on the situation. And we know what happened as a result. PBS executives believed that the show’s producers compromised the integrity by “by failing to shield the creative and editorial process from improper influence” and not reporting that Affleck made the request in the first place.
From New York Times:
“We’ve never had anyone ever try to censor or edit what we found,” Mr. Gates wrote to a Sony executive, Michael Lynton, in July 2014. Mr. Gates added that this would violate PBS rules, and “once we open the door to censorship, we lose control of the brand.”
The third season of the show is on pause until the show switches up the staff, including hiring a fact checker and an “independent genealogist.” There’s no word on whether there will be a fourth season at this time. The third season will act as the indicator, and if all’s well and the new standards are upheld, the show may come back for a fourth season.
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