The Radio Television Digital News Association has awarded a new winner for the National Edward R. Murrow Award for Sports Reporting in Small Market TV because of an error that allowed a large market organization to compete for that prize.
WTVR-TV of Richmond, VA, is the new Small Market TV winner for Sports Reporting for its piece “73-Year-Old BMX Rider Art Luck: Even if I Come in Last, I’m Happy.”
RTDNA previously announced News 12 Connecticut, which operates in the New York City TV market, as the winner in that category. Because it is located within the New York City market, News 12 Connecticut was ineligible to compete in the Small Market TV division.
“We are truly sorry for this mistake,” RTDNA President and CEO Dan Shelley said. “We should have caught this error sooner. We apologize to News 12 Connecticut and all the talented journalists who produce great work there every day. They entered in the Small Market TV division in good faith, and this should not in any way detract from their consistently outstanding journalism.”
Once RTDNA staff became aware of the eligibility concerns, it reached out to News 12 leaders and started consulting with members of the RTDNA Awards Committee and RTDNA executive leadership. After careful and considerable deliberation, RTDNA decided to rescind the award, and asked the judges to select a new winner.
Both newsrooms were informed of the final decision earlier this week.
“The RTDNA Code of Ethics encourages journalists to own errors, correct them promptly and give those corrections as much prominence as the error itself had,” Shelley said. “We own this error, apologize for it and have now corrected it.”
Throughout the process, the fairness and integrity of the Edward R. Murrow Awards were the most important considerations.
For questions, please contact RTDNA President and CEO Dan Shelley at firstname.lastname@example.org.