In NBC Interview, a Failure to Note Network Ties

By Andrew Gauthier 

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The New York Times


To the untrained eye, it might appear that NBC Universal has given a lesson in corporate synergy.

When two television cast members sneaked into a White House state dinner last week, Bravo cameras were filming them all the way to the east gate. Days of publicity followed. When they finally decided to explain themselves, they gave their first–and so far only–interview to Bravo’s corporate sibling, NBC.

NBC News says the appearance of the party-crashers, Tareq and Michaele Salahi, was merely the result of hard journalism and old-fashioned hustle. But NBC’s “Today Show” faced sharp criticism on Tuesday and Wednesday when it did not disclose that the couple was being filmed for “The Real Housewives of D.C.,” the latest extension of Bravo’s glamorous and lucrative franchise. (Video here)

NBC and Bravo are both units of NBC Universal, and are both based at Rockefeller Center. By neglecting to acknowledge the corporate relationship, “NBC is expanding the field of quicksand theyre standing in,” said Bob Steele, a journalism ethics professor at DePauw University. More…

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