Soledad O’Brien to Host October 8 Inaugural Livestream viaMatterofFact.tv & Dozens of Hearst Sites Initiative Brings Together Hearst Consumer Media Resources, Encompassing Television Stations, Newspapers & Magazines Share Program Live Across Digital Platforms
NEW YORK, October 5, 2020 – On Thursday, October 8 at 7 p.m. ET, the urgent conversation about race, equality and justice will be the focus of a live, multimedia, interactive forum across many of America’s most familiar media brands with the debut of“The Hard Truth About Bias: Images and Reality.” The one-hour digital program, originating from New York and featuring a wide array of topic leaders from across the nation, is a special project of Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien, the Hearst Television public affairs program, now among the most watched weekend issues talk shows in the country.
“The Hard Truth About Bias: Images and Reality” is the first installment of the Matter of Fact Listening Tour, with a series of quarterly virtual forums to be presented in 2021. The initiative harnesses the combined digital platforms of Hearst’s consumer media brands to livestream the presentation, including 33 television stations, among them WMOR-TV; newspapers around the country, including the Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle, the San Antonio Express News and Times Union(Albany, New York); as well as many of the world’s most popular magazines, including Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Good Housekeeping and Marie Claire. The program will also stream on Matter of Fact’s website, YouTube and Facebook Livechannels.
“This is a critical conversation for our country, and we are proud to launch this project, expanding the Matter of Fact brand and leveraging journalism resources from across the company,” said Hearst President and CEO Steven R. Swartz. “The talented, diverse team bringing this project to life is taking on important topics with insightful guests to provide viewers with a range of valuable perspectives.”
“The Hard Truth About Bias: Images and Reality” will feature conversations about the relationship of race and privilege, racial stress, the impact of bias in the images and language in our daily news and information, and the creation of stereotypes and how they influence the way we think. A special segment will revisit the landmark 1968 Esquire interview with legendary novelist, playwright, essayist, poet and activist James Baldwin. In addition, the presentation will include a segment bringing together individuals involved in recent public confrontations that have gone viral.
“The first step toward understanding each other is to listen to each other, especially when it comes to the issue of race,” said O’Brien. “We need to hear from people of different perspectives so we can bring the challenges of equality and justice into full view where they can be scrutinized, confronted and addressed. We need to understand how each of us participates in creating biases and stereotypes and own our responsibility to dismantle them.”
For “The Hard Truth About Bias: Images and Reality,” O’Brien will talk with a wide cross section of guests, including well-known names and emerging voices from the worlds of academia, journalism, sports, entertainment and other aspects of American society. She and her guests will also respond to audience questions in the last segment, entitled “Matter of Fact: After the Fact.”
Guests scheduled for “The Hard Truth About Bias” include (in alphabetical order):
- Mahzarin Banaji, Ph.D., Professor of Social Ethics, Harvard University
- Genesis Be, musical artist and activist
- Brenda White Bull, great, great granddaughter of Lakota leader Sitting Bull
- Joie Chen, Matter of Fact journalist
- Trae Crowder, writer and comedian
- Robin DiAngelo, Ph.D., Affiliate Associate Professor of Education, University of Washington
- Jennifer Eberhardt, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology, Stanford University
- Alicia Garza, Black Lives Matter co-founder
- Eddie Glaude, Ph.D., Chair of the Center for African American Studies, Princeton University
- Jemele Hill, VICE journalist
- Wes Lowery, CBS News journalist
- Alfred Martin, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Media Studies, The University of Iowa
- Mia Mask, Ph.D., Professor of Film, Vassar College
- Wes Moore, CEO, the Robin Hood Foundation
- Rashawn Ray, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology, University of Maryland
- John Ridley, Oscar-winning screenwriter
- Michael Sebastian, Esquire editor-in-chief
- Etan Thomas, ESPN Radio host and former NBA player
- Dorothy Tucker, WBBM-TV, president of the National Association of Black Journalists
Hearst is a leading global, diversified media, information and services company with more than 360 businesses. Its major interests include ownership in cable television networks such as A&E, HISTORY, Lifetime and ESPN; global financial services leader Fitch Group; Hearst Health, a group of medical information and services businesses; transportation assets including CAMP Systems International, a major provider of software-as-a-service solutions for managing maintenance of jets and helicopters; 33 television stations such as WCVB-TV in Boston and KCRA-TV in Sacramento, California, which reach a combined 19% of U.S. viewers; newspapers such as the Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle and Times Union (Albany, New York); more than 300 magazines around the world, including Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Men’s Health and Car and Driver, and digital services businesses such as iCrossing and KUBRA; and investments in emerging digital entertainment companies such as Complex Networks. Follow us on Twitter @Hearst. To learn more about Hearst, visit hearst.com.
About Hearst Television
Hearst Television owns and operates 33 television and two radio stations serving 26 media markets across 39 states reaching over 21 million U.S. television households. Through its partnership with nearly all the major networks, Hearst Television distributes national content over nearly 70 video channels, including programming from ABC, NBC, CBS, CW, MY Net, MeTV, This TV, Estrella and more. The radio stations are leaders in Baltimore news/talk and rock music listenership. Hearst Television is recognized as one of the industry’s premier companies and has been honored with numerous awards for distinguished journalism, industry innovation and community service. Hearst Television is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hearst.
About Soledad O’Brien
Soledad O’Brien is an award-winning documentarian, journalist, speaker, author and philanthropist, who founded Soledad O’Brien Productions, a multiplatform media production company dedicated to telling empowering and authentic stories on a range of social issues. She anchors and produces the Hearst TV political magazine program Matter of Fact with Soledad O’Brien and is a correspondent for HBO Real Sports. She is a thought leader, with over 1.3 million Twitter followers, who has a national impact through her speeches, numerous documentaries and her presence on the op-ed pages of platforms like The New York Times and HuffPost. She has anchored shows on CNN, MSNBC and NBC and reported for Fox, A&E, Oxygen, Nat Geo, the PBS NewsHour, WebMD and Al Jazeera America, among others. O’Brien’s work has been recognized with three Emmy awards, twice with the George Foster Peabody Award, three times with the Gracie Award, which honors women in media, twice with Cine Awards for her work in documentary films and also with an Alfred I. DuPont Award.