Limited search for public files
The first rule to acquiring public files from a news organization is to enter in the correct door. Once that is accomplished then it's just a matter of waiting patiently. Jenny Liberatore, who was in charge of the public files at FOX 6 Milwaukee, guided Carlie Campbell, Kelly White and myself through the rigorous process. But really, it was a breeze.The files were kept in a small room so Liberatore did most of the work for us. The network only held two of the six listed client contracts. These two, Restore our Future and the Red White and Blue Fund.
The Restore our Future fund is a pro-Mitt Romney organization and the point of procuring these public files was to see just how much spending goes into the political ads for each candidate and party. It's no wonder then that the Restore our Future group had multiple contracts with FOX 6 compared to the pro-Rick Santorum group Red White and Blue Fund – Romney's always been known to be the big spender. The Restore our Future group had three separate contracts and placed close to $90,000 worth in ads. Compare this to Red White and Blue Fund's single contract and near $25,000 spending bill and one can see who won the race in terms of media coverage.
As for the overall experience, it was not anything spectacular. What I was expecting was to walk into a busy newsroom, attempt to navigate and find the correct person and then struggle to find what was needed in an enormous piles of files. Lucky for us, it was anything but.