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Posts Tagged ‘Cho Seung Hui’

NBC Explains Decision To Air VT Killer Video



The pain suffered by the Virginia Tech community and indeed the entire country is immeasurable.

Upon receiving the materials from Cho Seung-Hui, NBC News took careful consideration in determining how the information should be distributed. We did not rush the material onto air, but instead consulted with local authorities, who have since publicly acknowledged our appropriate handling of the matter. Beginning this morning, we have limited our usage of the video across NBC News, including MSNBC, to no more than 10 percent of our airtime.

Our Standards and Policies chief reviewed all material before it was released. One of our most experienced correspondents, Pete Williams handled the reporting. We believe it provides some answers to the critical question, “why did this man carry out these awful murders?” The decision to run this video was reached by virtually every news organization in the world, as evidenced by coverage on television, on websites and in newspapers. We have covered this story — and our unique role in it — with extreme sensitivity, underscored by our devoted efforts to remember and honor the victims and heroes of this tragic incident. We are committed to nothing less.

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‘Killer’ Coverage


Media notes on the bizarre twist in the Va. Tech shooter case:

  • NYT:

    The package sent by the killer to NBC forced the network to make “tough decisions,” many orchestrated by NBC News prez Steve Capus. It arrived yesterday at NBC headquarters in New York and was almost immediately flagged as suspicious, because it had been mailed from Blacksburg, Va., and bore the return name A. Ishmael. Last night, the anchor of NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams, called the materials a “multimedia manifesto” and said they were mailed by Cho Seung-Hui. NBC security officer, Brian Patton, opened the package, a large-size Express Mail envelope. The package had been intended to arrive in one day, but the address was wrong. Instead of 30 Rockefeller Plaza, it was “30 Rockefeller Ave.,” and the ZIP code was wrong.

  • B&C:

    “I certainly want to commend NBC news for what they have done,” said Col. Steven Flaherty, superintendent of the Virginia State Police, at a press conference. “The way they secured this information and they way they handled it with dignity.”

  • WaPo: “As broadcast and cable networks appeared ready to step beyond decent boundaries of saturation and repetition yesterday in their coverage, the story suddenly turned shocking new corners — and took on strange new life.”
  • CNN/Money: “Old media” sites, like CNN, see Virginia Tech news spike.
  • Brian Williams via Daily Nightly blog: It was “a lot of material” to slog through.
  • The network is taking heat for airing the killer’s “manifesto,” but the media needs to defend NBC, says an “insider.”
  • TVNewser: NBC says it will limit broadcasting the killer’s video to six minutes per hour.

VT Killer Mailed Package To NBC

vatech_killer_nbc.jpgCho Seung-Hui, the gunman in the Virginia Tech shootings, mailed a package to NBC News before he entered Norris Hall, a source tells our brother TVNewser. Developing …


Alex Witt on MSNBC at 4:23PM: “NBC News has become to some degree a part of this investigation … NBC News has received some information from the deceased shooter … In which we received a package that included some images a lengthy diatribe. We believe it may shed some light on what he was doing between the first shooting and the second … It includes some images, disturbing, rambling, multi-page statement … NBC News immediately turned this information over to authorities to assist in their investigation … We are not going to give out any specifics of the information …”


Blacksburg authorities: “The correspondence included multiple photos, video and writings … I certainly want to commend NBC News for what they’ve done, the way they’ve secured this information, and the way they handled it with dignity … The originals were turned over to the FBI … This may be a very new, critical component of this investigation … we are in the process right now of analyzing and evaluating its work.”


NBC News statement: “NBC received a communication from Cho Seung-Hui, the man identified by police as the Virginia Tech shooter, via the US Mail this morning and immediately turned it over to the authorities. The package included images, videos and writings, and appears to have been mailed between the two shootings. We are cooperating fully with the authorities.”

  • TVNewser
  • Va. Tech Shooter’s ‘Play’


    AOL, via Facebook, has obtained Cho Seung Hui‘s Richard McBeef, a play he supposedly wrote while at Virginia Tech. A student explains the eery background to AOL:

    A major part of the playwriting class was peer reviews. We would write one-act plays and submit them to an online repository called Blackboard for everyone in the class to read and comment about in class the next day. Typically, the students give their opinions about the plays and suggest ways to make it better, the professor gives his insights, then asks the author to comment about the play in class.

    When we read Cho’s plays, it was like something out of a nightmare. The plays had really twisted, macabre violence that used weapons I wouldn’t have even thought of. Before Cho got to class that day, we students were talking to each other with serious worry about whether he could be a school shooter. I was even thinking of scenarios of what I would do in case he did come in with a gun, I was that freaked out about him. When the students gave reviews of his play in class, we were very careful with our words in case he decided to snap. Even the professor didn’t pressure him to give closing comments.


  • Va. Tech Shootings: Notes On Coverage