Is NBC Trying to Make Brian Williams Unemployable?

Over the last week, stories have been leaking out of NBC News that are not making Brian Williams future at the Peacock look very good.

First reports came out that BriLie had embellished more stories.

Then it was leaked that many staffers inside NBC's DC Bureau do not want Williams to return to the network. 

The NY Times then came out with a story, saying that NBC's internal investigation includes at least one episode that was previously unreported, these people said, involving statements by Williams about events from Tahrir Square in Cairo during the Arab Spring.

although, NBC says they are still investigating BriWi's stories, it seems clear that the network is leaking information that is detrimental to the suspended Anchor. 

It's as if NBC does not want Williams back, but is trying to poison him enough, that he won't be hired by the competition either.

Insiders think that NBC has no problem cutting ties with Williams, they just don't want him to pop up on a rival network.

One insider thinks that NBC is trying to leak enough information that Williams will be toxic to all the other networks.

Well, expect CNN.

It is believed that Zucker will hire just about anyone (i.e. Don Lemon), but NBC isn't worried if BriWi lands at CNN.

They just don't want him to join "a real network" says our insider.

Stay tuned.... 

Staffers Look to Sue Al Jazeera America

When Al Jazeera America launched, many thought (not FTVLive mind you) that it was going to be the holy grail of journalism.

The network made a big push into American living rooms with a seemingly unlimited budget, high-profile journalism hires and a mandate to play the news straight.

All of that seems to have fallen by the wayside.

The NY Post says that a host of staffers are upset that the cable news outfit with is funded by the government of Qatar. AJA is laying off staffers and watering down its US editorial voice while programming from sibling Al Jazeera English occupies more air time.

In addition, insiders said CEO Ehab Al Shihabi has become a more forceful presence at the network, reshuffling senior news positions and laying off seven staffers last week. The recent moves on top of an earlier round of belt-tightening have led to rising newsroom tensions.

“People are considering legal counsel,” said one insider, adding that “good people came here and were lied to.”

Sources tell FTVLive that NY Post story is just the tip of the iceberg.  

Word is that Al Jazeera America CEO Ehab Al-Shihabi was just "summoned" to Doha headquarters amidst rumors he will be fired.  

Many in the Newsroom are hoping for his dismissal, with one VP openly wishing for the CEO's death.  Expectation/hope his top deputy, President Kate O'Brian will also get the axe.  

She is being named in two lawsuits filed by employees she fired, soon after they complained about hostile work environment.  

FTVLive is hearing of lies and broken promises throughout the U-S channel.... The lawsuit complaints will be explicit and explosive, as Doha execs considering Shihabi and O'Brian's fate have been warned.

 Ironically, the Americans working in Qatar for AJ English are happy and respected.  But AJ America channel is a disaster.

Stay tuned.... 

ABC Got the Ratings they Wanted with Bruce Jenner Interview

Although Diane Sawyer had interviewed Bruce Jenner months ago, ABC decided to hold the story until the May book.

They knew it would drive ratings and it did. 16.9 million people tuned in to hear that the former Olympic star now considers himself a woman.

FTVLive was not one of the 16.9 million to tune in and while the interview is getting high reviews, it still seemed like the two sides were using each other.

ABC scheduled the interview to run in ratings and while it was airing, E! confirmed that Jenner has a new reality show coming to the network.

Looks like a win, win for all sides. 

One of the Most Important Media Reporters in America

The list included the usual suspects, Eric Wemple of the Washington Post, Emily Smith of the NY Post, Jim Romenesko, Dylan Byers and others.

But, also on the list of the Top 14 Most Important Media Reporters was Scott Jones of FTVLive.



Yes, folks.... FTVLive made the list. Not sure how, but we did.

It should be pointed out, that while I am the Editor of FTVLive, I'm also a contributor to Newsblues, TV Spy and others The difference being, I'm not paid, or rarely credited for all the work I do for those sites. 

The other thing, all the others on the list either focus on the networks, or just a single market, FTVLive is in every network and every market in the country. 

Sure, we break stories about what is going down at CNN, NBC and Fox News, but we also break stories about what's happening in Boston, DC, Atlanta, Waterloo, and all the other markets as well. 

FTVLive is the only one that covers TV news from coast to coast, market to market.

Hell, when you think about it....damn right we're on the list.

Hell we are the list!

Just saying..... 

Check out the Mediaite list here

General Manager Bans Food From the Newsroom

Anyone that works in TV news knows that many times your lunch or dinner break is something quick from the e=vending machine, because you are crashing deadline.

Well, expect for News Anchors that get to take a two hour dinner break.

Sources at WICS in Spring Springfield, Illinois tell FTVLive that General Manager Rick Lipps held a news staff meeting on Friday.

Word is that Lipps basically told the newsroom that they are "lazy, slobs and unprofessional."

Word is that Lipps has now told news staffers that they are no longer allowed to bring any food, snacks or beverages into the newsroom.

"He thinks it's SOOOO rude that sometimes reporters eat at their desk," said one staffer to FTVLive. 

This is the same station where Vince DeMentri was fired after he got into a brawl with a Reporter at a local Hooters.

Maybe Lipps should allow food in the newsroom and let let the staff go to Hooters.

Just saying.... 

Out the Door in Miami

It looks like more people are headed out the door at WFOR in Miami.

Sources tell FTVLive that Jilda Unruh (pictured), the Senior Investigative Producer, handed in her resignation on Friday. Word is she's gone effective immediately, taking a job outside of TV news.  

We hear a Morning Producer gave her notice and is headed to Atlanta and Photographer   Kyle Hall is leaving for a station in Philly.  

Another Photographer who had just started a few months ago was shown the door under mysterious circumstances.

The revolving door continues at the CBS O&O. 

Man Sues Miami Station that Labeled Him a Sex Offender

A man claims that a Miami television station broadcast a report falsely identifying him as a sex offender, when in fact he isn't.

Now, he's suing the station. 

Courthouse News writes that Wilfredo Batista says until Nov. 11, 2014, he enjoyed a good name and reputation, but on that Monday, WPLG Local Channel 10 showed an advertisement on its news program saying "that he was a sexual offender and lived at the residence and zip code where only sexual offenders lived."

In a complaint filed in the Miami-Dade County circuit court, Batista says that prior to broadcasting the defamatory and false statements against him, "Defendant did not investigate to determine the truth of the matters, and didn't conduct an investigation before portraying plaintiff Wilfredo Batista's picture in the television news advertisement," the complaint says.

According to the complaint a station photographer violated plaintiff's privacy and took a picture of him without his consent. It alleges that the photographer used plaintiff's image to falsely accuse him, and broadcasted it on an advertisement for a news story.

Batista called defendant's actions "ambush journalism."

The complaint states that the station said that all sex offenders reside in a certain zip code, and exploited Batista's picture to support its allegations.

Batista claims the station fabricated the story and falsely depicted him to the public cheapening his name, and offending him in front of the general audience.

According to his attorney, Theodore Enfield, Channel 10 televised Batista's picture, and labeled him as a sex offender without a reason.

Miami- Dade County Police Department's public records do not show or list plaintiff as a sex offender.

An attorney for the station said it is WPLG's practice not to comment on pending litigation. 

OKC Reporter Collapses During Live Shot

During coverage of Sunday's Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon, KFOR reporter Chellie Mills passed out while reporting from the "Gorilla Hill" section of the marathon route. She wasn't running the race, but passed out while giving her live report.

Mills is currently pregnant, it it is a good bet that played a part in her collapse. Fortunately for her, medical personnel were on hand to help the runners and were able to treat her.

They gave her crackers and juice and she soon was able to get back to reporting on the race. 

President Takes Shots at CNN, MSNBC at the Nerd Prom

For the second year in a row, FTVLive was invited to attend the White House Correspondents dinner and for the second year in a row, we declined. 

The "Nerd Prom" as it is called was Saturday night in DC and of course the guest list was packed with people that are not White House Correspondents, nor do they know who any of the White House Correspondents are. 

While the night was filled with speakers making jokes about the President, it was a chance for the President to take some shots at the media.

President Obama noted that Cecily Strong, the evening’s entertainer, impersonates a CNN anchor on “Saturday Night Live.”

“Which is surprising,” he said, “because the only people impersonating journalists on CNN are the journalists on CNN.”

He added that this winter’s polar vortex produced “so many record lows that they renamed it MSNBC.”

What makes the jokes funny, is they are so very true.

Strong stayed mostly mum on BriWi, "What can I say about Brian Williams?" Strong said, "Nothing because I work for NBC," she joked. 

H/T Washington Post