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The WNET Group Announces New Reporting Initiative
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Exploring Hate: Anti-Semitism, Racism and Extremism

Will feature national, regional and local programming beginning with new FRONTLINE documentaries premiering Spring 2021 on PBS

(NEW YORK –Tuesday, February 2, 2021) The violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021 marked another inflection point in American history. Increased reports of brutal acts of hate, white supremacy and anti-Semitism have occurred in cities across the globe. In response to this trend, The WNET Group, the parent company of America’s flagship PBS station THIRTEEN, today announced Exploring Hate: Anti-Semitism, Racism and Extremism, a new public media reporting initiative about the roots and rise of hate in America and across the globe.

Exploring Hate will provide historical programming and examine present-day threats, seeking to highlight solutions-based responses that promote understanding, healing and civility. The initiative will launch with American Insurrection, a new documentary from the award-winning investigative PBS series FRONTLINE,premiering April 13 nationwide on PBS, and the PBS Video app. American Insurrection, which examines the rise of political extremism and violence in America, is the first of two FRONTLINE documentaries that will be part of the Exploring Hate initiative. The second film and additional broadcast and digital programs, community engagement events and strategic partnerships are currently in development and will be announced at a later date.

“Anti-Semitism and racism are rooted in a lack of tolerance. The recent insurgency at the United States Capitol was an attack on the very basis of our democracy, shining a spotlight on the toxic mix of nationalism and extremism on the rise in our nation,” said Neal Shapiro, President and CEO of The WNET Group. “The best antidotes to intolerance are education and understanding. We aim to advance both with this new initiative.”

The multiplatform Exploring Hate initiative will grow to involve the creation, curation and dissemination of content, and the development of educational tools for classrooms. Exploring Hate reporting will appear on Amanpour and Company, FRONTLINE, PBS NewsHour Weekend, and WNET’s regional news programs MetroFocus and NJ Spotlight News.Additional broadcast and digital programs, community engagement events and strategic partnerships are currently in development and will be announced at a later date.

With online platforms being used as organizing tools for violence, as well as being the subject of intense debates over free speech, Exploring Hate will launch a digital presence that will seek to engage audiences around topics including intersectionality, media literacy and how to debunk conspiracy theories.

Leadership support for Exploring Hate is provided by the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, with additional major funding from The Peter G. Peterson and Joan Ganz Cooney Fund and Patti Askwith Kenner. Additional support is provided by Sue and Edgar Wachenheim, III, James and Merryl Tisch, Nancy and Morris W. Offit and Judy and Josh Weston.


About WNET

WNET is America’s flagship PBS station: parent company of New York’s THIRTEEN, WLIW21, WLIW-FM and operator of NJTV, the statewide public media network in New Jersey and its news division, NJ SPOTLIGHT NEWS. Through its new ALL ARTS multi-platform initiative, its broadcast channels, three cable services (THIRTEEN PBSKids, Create and World) and online streaming sites, WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to more than five million viewers each month. WNET produces and presents a wide range of acclaimed PBS series, including Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend, and the nightly interview program Amanpour and Company. In addition, WNET produces numerous documentaries, children’s programs, and local news and cultural offerings, as well as multiplatform initiatives addressing poverty and climate. Through THIRTEEN Passport and WLIW Passport, station members can stream new and archival THIRTEEN, WLIW and PBS programming anytime, anywhere.

Lindsey Horvitz, WNET

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