Media Scandals

By Tim Graham | August 12, 2012 | 8:29 PM EDT

On Sunday’s Reliable Sources, CNN host Howard Kurtz lashed out at CNN’s own host Fareed Zakaria for committing plagiarism in a gun control article for Time magazine. Kurtz gave credit to us: “A conservative watchdog site Newsbusters, acting on a tip from the NRA, broke the story that Fareed's column was not entirely his own work.”

Kurtz put the two passages side by side on the screen to underline Zakaria’s copycat routine and pounded Zakaria for committing a “cardinal journalistic sin,” and the “latest case study of an insidious journalistic disease.” It’s too bad journalists aren’t this upset about sloppy bias. (Video and transcript below)

By Tom Blumer | July 21, 2012 | 8:46 AM EDT

Brian Ross is not the only blameworthy party in the irresponsible smear of a 52 year-old Tea Party activist as the possible perpetrator of the Aurora, Colorado theater massacre early Friday. Everyone on the set of ABC's Good Morning America could have said "wait, this is premature and irresponsible" -- and didn't.

GMA co-host and former Bill Clinton advisor George Stephanopoulos's response to Ross's identification of 52 year-old "Jim Holmes" as perhaps the same "James Holmes" who had been arrested earlier that morning arguably added legitimacy to Ross's speculation: "OK, we'll keep looking at that. Brian Ross, thanks very much." As if they would actually find more of a tie-in, which of course they didnt. In his column yesterday, the underappreciated John Kass at the Chicago Tribune succinctly described Stephanopoulos's likely mindset, as well as how ABC was originally hoping to blame "social media" for Ross's GMA team-assisted smear (bolds are mine):

By Brent Bozell | June 19, 2012 | 1:41 PM EDT

Barack Obama’s adoring cheerleaders at NBC are back in the editing room distorting the truth, and, not surprisingly, Andrea Mitchell has the gall to make no apologies for it.

First it was their vile attempt to make George Zimmerman sound like a racist to gin up racial conflict, and now they’ve set their sights on Mitt Romney who they’re desperately trying to paint as an out-of-touch, silver spoon Republican wowed by Wawa sandwiches. [Attached below page break: Our side-by-side comparison of the edited video plus video of Mitchell's non-apology]

By Mark Finkelstein | May 2, 2012 | 9:52 AM EDT

If this is how Dan Rather at peace looks like, wonder what he's like when angry and embittered . . .

On Morning Joe today, Rather emphatically alleged that he was "at peace" over the Memogate fiasco that led to the end of his career. But he couldn't help himself from suggesting that his reputation had been destroyed by anonymous partisans employing "lies."  View the video after the jump.

By NB Staff | April 12, 2012 | 5:52 PM EDT

Earlier this week, NewsBusters publisher and Media Research Center founder Brent Bozell announced he was calling on Congress to investigate Comcast, the parent company of NBC, given the network's malfeasance in the Zimmerman 911 audio editing.

Comcast's "continued silence on how to prevent such malfeasance in the future constitutes a serious breach of public trust," Bozell noted in letters sent to Congress on Tuesday. As the cable giant is "in the midst of a business deal with Verizon requiring approval" by the FCC and DOJ, "the public policy issues related to the approval of this deal are so critical" as to require congressional hearings, Bozell wrote in his April 10 letter to the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights Subcommittee. A similar letter was simultaneously transmitted to the chairman and ranking member of the House Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition and the Internet. You can read those letters here and here.

By Kyle Drennen | April 12, 2012 | 5:19 PM EDT

In a statement totally disconnected from the reality of media coverage of the Trayvon Martin shooting, on Thursday's Today show, NBC chief medical editor Nancy Snyderman proclaimed that the case, "...underscores the fact that we don't talk about race enough in this country and that race does matter, it's always under the surface."

NBC alone – not to mention the other networks or MSNBC – made race so much of a central issue to the tragedy that the network aired a story that dishonestly edited a 911 call from accused shooter George Zimmerman to make it seem as if the neighborhood watch volunteer singled out the black teenager for his race.

While the network issued an apology on paper and fired the producer responsible for the false editing, NBC News has yet to apologize on air for the report, which appeared on Today.

By Ken Shepherd | April 12, 2012 | 5:14 PM EDT

While most everyone in political circles has condemned Hilary Rosen's slam of Ann Romney, rank-and-file liberals on Twitter apparently haven't read the memo.

Twitchy has an excellent post documenting all the bile, complete with requisite leftist slams of Mrs. Romney as a c*nt, b*tch, and whore. As Michelle Malkin, no stranger to left-wing hate, tweeted, "Some are baptized by fire. On Twitter, outspoken conservative women are baptized by vile."

By Walter E. Williams | April 10, 2012 | 10:55 AM EDT

When NBC's "Today" show played the audio of George Zimmerman's call to a Sanford, Fla., police dispatcher about Trayvon Martin, the editors made him appear to be a racist who says: "This guy looks like he's up to no good. He looks black." What Zimmerman actually said was: "This guy looks like he's up to no good or he's on drugs or something. It's raining, and he's just walking around, looking about." The 911 officer responded by asking, "OK, and this guy — is he black, white or Hispanic?" Zimmerman replied, "He looks black." NBC says it's investigating the doctoring of the audio, but there's nothing to investigate; its objective was to inflame passions.

In his Associated Press article titled "Old photos may be deceptive in Fla. shooting case," Matt Sedensky pointed out that the photos carried by the major media were several years old and showed Zimmerman looking fat and mean and Martin looking like a sweet young kid.

By NB Staff | April 10, 2012 | 8:29 AM EDT

NewsBusters publisher and Media Research Center (MRC) founder Brent Bozell announced earlier this morning that the MRC is calling upon Congress to investigate Comcast / NBC News for the intentional editing of the George Zimmerman audio that was broadcast multiple times and subsequently flamed the fires of racial hatred and animosity

“NBC is laughing at the public. Last week we said we would have more to say if their behavior in this matter didn’t change.  Given their continued irresponsibility, today we open up a new front," Bozell noted in a press release available here.

By Tom Blumer | April 7, 2012 | 2:36 PM EDT

Breitbart.com has noted that it took about 17 hours before the dam broke, but now the Associated Press and United Press International both have stories on NBC's decision to fire a Miami-based producer over the editing of George Zimmerman's 911 call.

The AP story, which has a time stamp of 12:03 p.m. at the Wall Street Journal, plays it pretty straight (posted in full because of it relative brevity; the item's author, as shown here, is Television Writer Frazier Moore):

By Brent Bozell | April 4, 2012 | 11:00 AM EDT

Editor's Note: Last week, NBC’s Today show doctored George Zimmerman’s 9-1-1 call so that his motive for shooting Trayvon Martin appeared racial. Over the weekend, NBC reported to The Washington Post that an investigation would be forthcoming after the Media Research Center (MRC) exposed their fraud. It appears NBC’s investigation has been completed.

Last night, NBC issued a two sentence explanation on it. NewsBusters publisher and MRC president Brent Bozell argues that the network's "apology" is as dishonest as the original piece and that Comcast, which owns NBC and MSNBC, needs to clean house at the network:

We reject this fraudulent apology. We're not surprised. After all, NBC "investigated" itself. We again call on Comcast, not NBC, to investigate this matter -- thoroughly, honestly, and professionally.

By Ken Shepherd | April 3, 2012 | 3:38 PM EDT

The Society of Professional Journalists's lifetime achievement award that was named in her honor has been "retired" but Helen "Thank God for Hezbollah" Thomas can console herself with her latest trophy: high praise from the Palestinian Liberation Organization.

The former Hearst syndicated columnist was reportedly feted by the "top Palestinian envoy to the U.S... at his Washington residence." Palestinian legislator (and former girlfriend of the late Peter Jennings) Hanan Ashrawi reportedly presented Thomas with an award on Sunday.