University was reluctant to grant Ailes no-filming request

Though video recording at a Roger Ailes forum on Tuesday was prohibited, university officials were reluctant to prevent attendees from recording the Fox News chairman and CEO on public property.

The Fox News media relations team was concerned that people or websites would take video clips of Ailes out of context, but Andy Alexander, the discussion moderator and Scripps Howard visiting professional, said it would not be a valid problem.

“When you have a full videotape of an event, that’s really a guarantee against that type of unfair editing occurring because the public has access to the full videotape,” Alexander said. “When you speak in a public setting and you’re a public figure, anybody should be able to videotape it.”

Ohio University officials did not attempt to stop attendees from recording video on their cellphones, said Robert Ingram, the coordinator of the event.

“We couldn’t have stopped people from taking video,” he said. “It’s a public space.”

Ingram, however, abided by Fox News’ request not to video record the discussion. Typically, event organizers put videos of the George Washington Forum discussions on the university’s website.

During the discussion, Ailes mentioned that he personally did not mind if someone recorded the forum.

“I don’t care. I was going to film it myself,” he said. “I just don’t think what I have to say is important.”

Ailes, who graduated from OU in1962, is the second George Washington Forum lecturer since the program began in 2010 to request no recording.

The first person to make this request was an associate professor of history. He was scheduled to give the same talk at another college a few weeks after OU, and did not want a video to go online before the second event, Ingram said.

Ailes did not place any restrictions on what Alexander could ask during the discussion, Alexander said.

“There were absolutely no restrictions at all,” he said. “When I was first asked to do this … one of the first things I said was, if I agreed to do it, there had to be no restrictions on what I could ask Roger Ailes.”

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