Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Boston Radio: Advertisers Start Boycotting WEEI-FM

At least two organizations, including Comcast Corp., have suspended advertising on sports-talk radio station WEEI following racially insensitive comments from one of its hosts.

According to boston.com, the cable giant and the City of Boston Credit Union have pulled their campaigns, effectively immediately, after midday host Christian Fauria imitated a well-known sports agent by speaking in a stereotypical Asian accent.

On Friday, WEEI suspended Fauria for five days, characterizing his behavior as an “insensitive and ill-conceived attempt at humor.” The former Patriots tight end is a co-host of the midday “Ordway, Merloni & Fauria” show.

Fauria apologized to his audience on Twitter and to the sports agent Don Yee, who represents Patriots star Tom Brady and San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Yee, who is of Chinese descent and was born in the United States, speaks English without an accent.

The incident and others “have made it clear that the culture of the station is not reflective of our values of inclusion, acceptance and mutual respect,” Dan Waltz, president of the City of Boston Credit Union, said in a statement. “We have a responsibility to our diverse membership to spend their advertising dollars responsibly and cannot support what is, in our opinion, the hateful and divisive content that seems to have become a matter of course at WEEI.”

Entercom Communications, which owns WEEI, did not have immediate comment.

Fauria’s five-day suspension came two weeks after the suspension of another WEEI personality, Alex Reimer.

The fill-in host was suspended indefinitely after using a derogatory phrase to describe Brady’s 5-year-old daughter. That incident, which occurred before the Super Bowl, caused Brady to cut short his regular weekly appearance on the station.

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