November 30, 2006
Belo Television Stations Provided 146 Candidates Free Airtime During The 2006 Political Season
Company deepened its election coverage over the air, in print and on its Web sites
DALLAS -- Belo Corp. (NYSE: BLC), one of the nation's largest media companies, announced today that its television stations provided more than 13 hours of free airtime to 146 congressional and gubernatorial candidates across the nation during the 2006 election season through the Company's "It's Your Time" program. In addition, Belo maximized the impact of its voter education by broadcasting 150 hours of political coverage on its 15 news-producing television stations.
From September 25 to November 6, Belo television stations aired an average of 71 local and national election-related stories each week an average of one hour and 39 minutes per station, weekly, during the six-week period. The coverage included seven debates that gave viewers a focused look at the candidates and their platforms. Belo re-broadcast an average of 206 stories weekly on the Company's regional and local cable news channels, and then streamed and archived the spots on Belo Web sites through Election Day.
Belo Web sites experienced heavy traffic in the days leading up to the election. KING5.com, the Web site for the Company's television station in Seattle/Tacoma, experienced its highest Web site traffic ever, with more than 1.2 million page views on Election Day.
"Showcasing our political coverage on our television stations, cable news channels and Web sites, significantly expanded our dialogue with the voting public," said Dunia Shive, Belo's president/Media Operations. "We're very pleased to have provided this level of coverage to our local communities."
Belo's newspapers, which have a daily combined readership of more than two million, also provided extensive coverage of local and statewide elections in their local markets. For example, the e ditorial board of The Dallas Morning News interviewed candidates in 98 elections of significance in North Texas and published carefully researched recommendations. The Morning News also leveraged its online capabilities to enhance coverage, featuring a multimedia presentation on the Texas gubernatorial candidates, a blog from the campaign trail, detailed candidate surveys and recommendations, and polling locations. The Morning News was the only major newspaper in the state of Texas to publish an editorial regarding the sole gubernatorial debate on the morning following the event. The newspaper collaborated with Belo television stations WFAA-TV in Dallas/Fort Worth and KHOU-TV in Houston to develop the most accurate polls in the governor's race, pegging the impact of the independent candidates early in the race and correctly predicting the order of finish.
"Belo is deeply committed to providing high-quality election coverage that is informative to the electorate in the local communities we serve," said Robert W. Decherd, Belo's chairman, president and chief executive officer. "Our original coverage of the candidates and critical election issues, along with our debate sponsorships are prime examples of this long-standing commitment."
About the "It's Your Time" Program
Belo pioneered the "It's Your Time" program in 1996 to help viewers understand issues facing their local communities. Candidates participating in "It's Your Time" each receive five minutes of free airtime. Since the program's inception, Belo has provided free airtime to more than 700 candidates in six consecutive election cycles including 2006.
Belo Corp. is one of the nation's largest media companies with a diversified group of market-leading television, newspaper, cable and interactive media assets. A Fortune 1000 company with 7,400 employees and more than $1.5 billion in annual revenues, Belo operates in some of America's most dynamic markets in Texas, the Northwest, the Southwest, the Mid-Atlantic and Rhode Island. Belo owns 19 television stations, six of which are in the 15 largest U.S. broadcast markets. The Company also owns or operates seven cable news channels and manages one television station through a local marketing agreement. Belo's daily newspapers are The Dallas Morning News, The Providence Journal, The Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA) and the Denton Record-Chronicle (Denton, TX). The Company also publishes specialty publications targeting young adults, and the fast-growing Hispanic market, including Quick and Al D a in Dallas/Fort Worth, and El D and La Prensa in Riverside. Belo operates more than 30 Web sites associated with its operating companies. Additional information is available at www.belo.com or by contacting Carey Hendrickson, vice president/Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, at 214-977-6626.
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