Complain About a Radio or Television Broadcast • Letter Templates and Guides

How to write this letter:

1State your grievance, giving all relevant facts concerning the case in question, including how the incident or policy affects you.
2Suggest what could be done to solve the problem, as you see it. If you plan to take action, let the reader know.
3Close with a positive expression.


Send this letter with as many signatures as possible. It is important to communicate the magnitude of your disappointment without insulting the reader.

Example Letter #1


We are writing to express our displeasure with your report on our Youth Bible Conference. First of all, it was not limited to a "fringe group" of one particular religion, but had the support and participation of all Protestant groups in the State. Nothing was said about the study sessions, talks, and publications that came out of the meetings. In fact, your broadcast seemed to focus on one unfortunate incident in which a homeless man had an altercation with a security guard. This was hardly what the conference was about. In all, your coverage was so inaccurate that it could lead one to believe that your station has significant prejudice against religious groups, regardless of their activities.

An apology is in order. You should consider the ramifications of such irresponsible reporting, which will surely not go unnoticed by the public. As for the undersigned and the hundreds who were in attendance, we have lost confidence in the credibility of your news reports. We hope you are interested in regaining this confidence and look forward to your correcting the problem.

Example Letter #2


I have always allowed my children to watch your station uncensored because of its family-centered programming, but yesterday afternoon I saw your new pilot program "Two." The language and the material were shocking, and I was saddened that the one station I had trusted had stooped so low.

Please discontinue that program after its initial contract ends, so we can once again enjoy watching Springfield's local station.

Example Letter #3


When I sit down to watch a sitcom with my children between the hours of 7:00 and 9:00 p.m., I expect family entertainment. Imagine my surprise as we watched "Captain Creep" last night when not one, but two nearly naked actresses danced across our screen into the bed of one eager actor. Money is the only excuse for broadcasting such garbage. I am writing the show's sponsors to tell them that my money is going elsewhere until this show is moved to a different time slot or removed altogether. I hope you see the wisdom of cleaning up prime time programming.

Example Letter #4


We were very distressed by your one-sided coverage of the Springfield City Planning Commission meeting last Tuesday. You made it sound as if almost everyone present was in favor of the proposed rezoning, when in fact the meeting was evenly split. Implying that those opposed to the rezoning were a small minority, and referring to us as a "lunatic fringe" in your broadcast was misleading and insulting.

Kindly retract your statements and apologize on the air. We understand that it may be difficult for a local station to be impartial in reporting such matters, but impartiality is important if you wish to have any credibility at all.

Write Your Letter Step-by-Step


State your grievance, giving all relevant facts concerning the case in question, including how the incident or policy affects you.

Example Sentences for Step 1

Because I enjoyed your series on 20th century American artists, and because I enjoy writing, I looked forward to your show on Jane Doe that was aired June 22. I was extremely disappointed when you spent practically the whole show discussing her relationships with men. I admire Doe's poetry, and I was upset that you chose to spend only about five minutes discussing her significant contribution to the humanities. The way your evening news reporter, John Doe, portrayed the Reverend Eric Johnson offended us. We have known Reverend Johnson since before he entered the seminary, and we know that he is not the sinister money-grabbing type that John Doe made him out to be. Had Mr. Doe taken the time to visit the Reverend at home, or spend a day with him, we are sure he would have covered the story in a very different way. I have long admired your series Doe and Doe. I am a lawyer myself, and I have enjoyed this show very much because I felt it portrayed accurately what defense lawyers go through day after day. The last three episodes, however, have caused me to rethink my opinion of the show. It appears that your writers are determined to portray lawyers as dishonest opportunists. Every profession has its share of dishonest people, but this show is highlighting the exception rather than the rule. It does a disservice to ethical members of our profession. We were very distressed to see that your company has decided to sponsor a Bikini Contest to be aired next weekend. We have always been impressed with your company's intelligent advertising and are disappointed that you would sponsor an event dedicated to the exploitation of women. While driving to work, I have enjoyed listening to your radio station. I have been pleased that you have "taken the higher ground," avoiding tasteless jokes and inane conversation. I was disappointed the last couple of mornings to find that new DJs had lowered the caliber of your programming.

Example Phrases for Step 1


Suggest what could be done to solve the problem, as you see it. If you plan to take action, let the reader know.

Example Sentences for Step 2

Example Phrases for Step 2