As part of the Balance Sheet's continuing series of interviews with the people of FOX News Channel, we sat down with David Asman, host of Forbes on FOX and FOX News Live:
Does FNC approach business reporting differently than other networks?
Asman: We are always right there asking the same questions the viewer would ask. We are always keeping in mind the average person — how much they know, how much they want to know about a subject. On Forbes on FOX we speak in language that is free of jargon. Neil Cavuto, the man that oversees all of our business news, makes sure that the last place in the world that you're going to find complicated jargon is in the Business Block. That's one place you can go for very clear, understandable English about what is happening in the economy.
What makes our business programming so popular?
Asman: Neil Cavuto probably has more business sense then anybody out there. Yet he has an ability to present business information in a way that is not boring, that is clear, that is understandable, and that is not out to impress some economist that might be watching. It is presented in a way to satisfy the interest and the needs of the viewers of FOX. We are not looking to impress the experts, but to make it understandable for those who want answers to their business questions.
What makes FNC different from the competition?
Asman: The key ingredient is fun. We don't believe that news has to be bland. We don't believe that you have to sacrifice any of the meat for the sake of the gravy. You can have a fun show — something that's fun to watch, that is entertaining, and still have as much solid information — without compromising the integrity of the information.
Do you feel a heavier sense of responsibility reporting on the war?
Asman: It affects my life personally. I have a son in the Marine Corps, so I have a particular interest in what happens in the war just like other families who have sons and daughters, husbands and wives in the military. So, there is a personal connection for me with what is going on in the war. There is nobody at FOX — even those who don't have family in the military — who don't take the subject very, very seriously. We understand that war is probably the most serious thing this nation gets involved in.
How do you see your relationship with the viewer?
Asman: The most important thing around here is that people listen to each other. We have respect for each other, and we have respect for the people watching. We never ignore the interest of the viewer. We're always getting e-mail from the viewer, and we've used those e-mails to craft the way we approach the news. We never compromise on our commitment to fair and balanced, but we allow the input of the viewer to have an affect on how news is presented and what news is presented. Sometimes we get calls or we get e-mails that suggest a certain angle on a story we haven't been thinking of. Viewers will see angles that we hadn't considered.