LETTER: Victoria News’ civic election coverage questioned

It’s standard practice for newspapers to give scrupulously equal treatment to all candidates

When I see a poster-sized, front-page photo of Stephen Andrew, one of eight candidates for mayor of Victoria, I can’t help but think Victoria News is showing it’s favouritism and political bias (Making it a race, Oct. 15).

Once an election is underway, it’s standard practice for newspapers to give scrupulously equal treatment to all candidates and let the readers make up their own mind.

The four thumbprint photos are dwarfed by the large photo of former journalist Andrew. One of the tiny photos is of David Shebib, a fringe candidate if I every saw one, and no photos or editorial reference are to be seen of candidates Riga Godorn and Jason Ross.

As for the editorial copy: Andrew is front and centre at the start of the front-page article, and Shebib gets disproportionate coverage at the end of the story. Meanwhile, former provincial cabinet minister Ida Chong, arguably the most qualified candidate and best to provide a strong change in leadership at city hall, barely garners four lines. All the while, Changes the Clown earned several lines of editorial coverage for some reason.

The race is on for the mayoralty: So, there should be equitable editorial and photo coverage, otherwise, you are showing favouritism and bias.

I can only hope things will improve and the Victoria News will make some positive and fair-minded contribution to the election issues and debate.

Stan Bartlett, Victoria

Editor’s note: Similar sized photos and stories were given to Ida Chong and Dean Fortin when they both declared their intentions to run for the mayoralty.