The cable TV business channels have always seemed to have a love-hate relationship with ethics. A few years ago, CNBC regularly put “analysts” on the air hawking a particular stock or two, without disclosing that the analyst or the analyst’s firm had a significant interest in the company being hawked.
Now upstart Fox Business Channel has been caught as part of its coverage of the very questionable CyberMonday coverage this week.
Fox interviewed a guy named Peter Perweiler, at the Washington ESPN Zone, as part of some sort of man-on-the-street coverage. Perweiler fairly gushed about online shopping.
It turns out, according to the blog ValleyWag, that Perweiler is the marketing director of the National Retail Federation. That went undisclosed.
And what was he doing at the ESPN Zone? The NRF had organized a media event to show “real shoppers” to the media. The NRF claims the media knew there were more than 20 staffers attending, some as shoppers.
Fox says it had no clue.
And most of the media there didn’t disclose that the shoppers were being served up to them at a media event.