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ABC Allows Networks To Take First Speech Live

On Sunday we wrote about the behind-the-scenes discussions by Fox News’ Bryan Boughton, representing the press pool, and ABC News and the Presidential Inauguration Committee (PIC). Boughton felt it unfair that ABC’s exclusive deal with the PIC meant no other network got a chance to carry President Barack Obama‘s first speech live at the Neighborhood Inaugural Ball as well as the Obamas’ first dance.

Now it appears ABC has relented a bit. Politico has a statement from an ABC spokesperson: “ABC Entertainment has lifted the embargo on Obama’s remarks at the Neighborhood Ball. The feed will be available to everyone real-time. The restriction on the use of everything else, including the first dance still stands.”

It sounds like a compromise was reached.

> Update: Boughton, network bureau chief chair of the press pool, tells TVNewser today: “ABC Entertainment lifted the embargo on President Obama’s remarks at the Neighborhood Ball this evening. We believe that ABC is still attempting to limit news coverage of the President during his first hours in office. We believe all networks are entitled to full access to this event.”

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