Fox News boss warns about offensive on-air comments


Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott is clamping down on what hosts and guests say on air, NBCNews has confirmed.

Scott, who was named chief executive in May, held a meeting with top staff in the past few days and read from prepared notes, telling producers of the channel's biggest shows that they would be held responsible for what their guests — and even what the hosts — say on air, according to a source who confirmed an earlier report by Politico.

Fox News has had to respond to a growing number of offensive and insensitive statements by hosts and guests. Producers in the meeting included Tommy Firth, who is the executive producer of "The Ingraham Angle," whose host, Laura Ingraham, faced backlash after she described detention centers where migrant children are being held as "summer camps."

Ingraham later qualified her statement, acknowledging that she had upset a lot of people. She said viewers should spend time in Central America with a view to adopting children.

But one source familiar with the situation at Fox who spoke on the condition of anonymity out of fear of professional retribution said it can be difficult for producers to control what hosts say.

"The idea that a 32-year-old producer can control what Laura Ingraham says live is not realistic," the source said.

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American radio talk show host Laura Ingraham arrives for a meeting with US President-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower on December 6, 2016 in New York. / AFP / Eduardo Munoz Alvarez (Photo credit should read EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - JULY 20: Political talk radio host Laura Ingraham delivers a speech on the third day of the Republican National Convention on July 20, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump received the number of votes needed to secure the party's nomination. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Cleveland, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Republican National Convention kicked off on July 18. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - JULY 20: Political talk radio host Laura Ingraham delivers a speech on the third day of the Republican National Convention on July 20, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump received the number of votes needed to secure the party's nomination. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Cleveland, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Republican National Convention kicked off on July 18. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
NATIONAL HARBOR, MD - FEBRUARY 26: Radio talk show host Laura Ingraham (R) makes a face as she goes on stage with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (L) for a discussion during the 42nd annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) February 26, 2015 in National Harbor, Maryland. Conservative activists attended the annual political conference to discuss their agenda. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
MANCHESTER, NH - APRIL 12: Radio host Laura Ingraham speaks at the Freedom Summit at The Executive Court Banquet Facility April 12, 2014 in Manchester, New Hampshire. The Freedom Summit held its inaugural event where national conservative leaders bring together grassroots activists on the eve of tax day. Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 20: Radio host Laura Ingraham attends The Daily Beast Bi-Partisan Inauguration Brunch at Cafe Milano on January 20, 2013 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Michael Kovac/WireImage)
NJ Governor Chris Christie arrives with talk show host Laura Ingraham to speak at the 2015 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) outside Washington, DC (Photo by Brooks Kraft LLC/Corbis via Getty Images)
Political commentator and author Laura Ingraham addresses the American Conservative Union's annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington (Photo by Brooks Kraft LLC/Corbis via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 18: Laura Ingraham visits Extra at The Grove on July 18, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/Getty Images for Extra)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 18: Laura Ingraham (L) and Mario Lopez visit Extra at The Grove on July 18, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/Getty Images for Extra)
WASHINGTON - DECEMBER 15: Conservative radio host and commentator Laura Ingraham addresses a health care reform protest on December 15, 2009 in Washington, DC. Demonstrators, many bused in from around the country, protested next to the Capitol building hoping to derail Senate health care legislation. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
THE VIEW - (7.12.11) Reality television star, Bethenny Frankel ('Bethenny Ever After') appeared as guest co-host today on 'The View.' Laura Ingraham was a guest. 'The View' airs Monday-Friday (11:00 am-12:00 pm, ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Heidi Gutman/ABC via Getty Images)LAURA INGRAHAM
WASHINGTON - JUNE 24: Laura Ingraham, Fox News Contributor and host of the Laura Ingraham Show, and Peter Kaplan, Editorial Creative Director, Conde Nast Traveler pose for a photo at the Washington DC Conde Nast Traveler celebration at Height's Courtyard - Washington Hilton on June 24, 2010 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Conde Nast Publications)
WASHINGTON - JANUARY 08: Laura Ingraham attends salute to Brit Hume at Cafe Milano on January 8, 2009 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/WireImage)
MAIDENS, VA - OCTOBER 07: Talk show host Laura Ingraham speaks while standing with U.S. Senator George Allen (R-VA) during his 11th annual 'Hoe Down' fundraiser October 7, 2006 in Maidens, Virginia. Recent polls show Senator Allen is in a close race for his Senate seat with Democratic challenger Jim Webb. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Laura Ingraham during US Comedy Arts Festival 2005 - 'Wag the Debate' Center for American Progress at St. Regis Hotel in Aspen, Colorado, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 1: Ariana Huffington talks with Laura Ingraham and Mika Bryzsenski September 1, 2008 at the Nicollet Island Inn in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Scott A. Schneider/WireImage)
11/17/95 - Office of attorney Laura Ingraham, 1440 NY Ave, 9th floor One of several women we will be taking photos of for a conservative women story. - Photo By Robert A. Reeder TWP (Photo by Robert A. Reeder/The Washington Post/Getty Images)
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Fox News also reportedly suspended David Bossie, who had served as President Donald Trump's deputy campaign manager, from appearing on air after he told a black guest, "You're out of your cotton-picking mind."

Fox News, which remains the most-watch network on basic cable, has also come under fire for its recent coverage of the president's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, which had included separating children from their families. The coverage pushed some entertainment talent associated with 21st Century Fox, which owns Fox News — including Seth MacFarlane, creator of "Family Guy" — to say they're "embarrassed" to work for the same parent company.

A Fox News spokeswoman said in a statement: "As the CEO of the network, Suzanne Scott regularly leads executive and editorial meetings and she expects accountability from her senior staff which is what all good leaders do."

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