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Archives: June 2012

FBN’s Charlie Gasparino Latest To Be Caught In ‘Pulitzer’ Flap

This week we noted how Bloomberg had to retract an ad featuring anchor Betty Liu, because it said that she was  “Pulitzer Prize-Nominated” when in fact, her work was simply submitted to the Pulitzer committee by her bosses.

Now Fox Business Network’s Charlie Gasparino has been busted for the same thing. Once again,’s Bill Dedman caught the error, and received a statement from Gasparino and FBN:

When asked on Tuesday in which year he was nominated, former boxer Gasparino jabbed back in a one-line email: “I was nominated by the wsj sir.”

A Fox spokeswoman also sent over a statement:

“The Wall Street Journal submitted Charlie Gasparino’s reporting of Wall Street research scandals to the Pulitzer Board in 2002,” said the statement from Kevin Magee, executive vice president of Fox Business Network. “While Fox Business never claimed he was a finalist for the award, we’ve clarified his bio to reflect the submission as opposed to a nomination.”

To reiterate, anyone can be a Pulitzer “nominee,” all you need is enough cash for the submission fee. The Pulitzer Committee selects “finalists” (which neither Liu nor Gasparino have ever been) and names one of them a “winner.” Both Liu and Gasparino had their work submitted by their editors, which is an honor within their respective news outlets, but not quite at the level of “Pulitzer Prize Nominee.”

Update: FBN executive VP Kevin Magee tells TVNewser that this whole issue is “A tempest in a thimble.”

“I just think this whole thing is a tempest in a thimble at this point,” Magee tells us. “What we are talking about is the use of the word ‘nominated,’ Charlie was lucky enough, or worked hard enough to have his work selected by the Wall Street Journal editors to be submitted to the Pulitzer committee. It was never anything more than that, I would probably call that nominated myself.  We both found out last week that they prefer you not call that nominated. So we changed his  bio and his references, it was not a big deal for us and not a big deal for him. It is a gigantic honor to have your work chosen by the editors of the Wall Street Journal, and he is justifiably proud of that, as are we for that matter.”

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Nancy Grace Vs. Nancy Grace

HLN host Nancy Grace recently taped a guest appearance on the Lifetime series “Drop Dead Diva.” She had a stunt double. Grace and her stunt double made a video where they pretended to beat each other up.


‘Nightline’ #1 in Q2

They won the 2011-2012 season, so it figures “Nightline” would also be the #1 show in late night for the second quarter.

In numbers just released, the ABC News show topped NBC’s “The Tonight Show” by the largest gaps in 17 years: in A25-54 demo (by +180,000 viewers), in the A18-49 demo (by +199,000) and in Total Viewers (by +333,000).

“Nightline” also won the week of June 18. Those numbers after the jump…

ABC’s ratings are based on a 25-minute broadcast, while CBS and NBC are based on approximately :50 minutes (prior to the final national commercial break of each program).

    Q2 2012:
Show Network Total Viewers A25-54 A18-49
Nightline ABC 3.84M 1.50M 1.20M
Tonight Show NBC 3.51M 1.32M 999KM
Late Show CBS 2.85M 1.18M 896K

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The Scoreboard: Thursday, June 28

25-54 demographic (Live +SD)

  • Total day: FNC: 391 | MSNBC: 221 | CNN: 170 | HLN: 90
  • Primetime: FNC: 500 | MSNBC: 379 | CNN: 182 | HLN: 117

5p: 6p: 7p: 8p: 9p: 10p: 11p: 12a:
FNC TheFive: Baier: Shep: O’Reilly: Hannity: Greta: O’Reilly: Hannity:
388 382 438 577 503 421 403 340
MSNBC Matthews: Sharpton: Matthews: EdShow: Maddow: O’Donnell: EdShow: Maddow:
193 207 289 308 459 361 185 181
CNN Blitzer: KingUSA: Burnett: Cooper: Morgan: Cooper: Burnett: Morgan:
226 215 133 206 174 165 108 117
HLN Express: Express: VelezMitchell: Grace: DrDrew: Grace: Showbiz: DrDrew:
41 43 52 127 121 104 161 77

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Supreme Court Health Care Cable News Ratings

The cable news channels saw big viewership during the early coverage of the Supreme Court’s health care ruling. Despite the initial inaccurate reporting on CNN and Fox News, they were the top choices for most viewers. In fact, FNC’s 2.93 million total viewers in the 10amET hour, is a million more viewers than the combined total of CNN and MSNBC.

Fox News – 2.934 Total Viewers / 676K A25-54
CNN – 1.065 / 348K
MSNBC – 848 / 222K

A Tribute to Ann Curry, and a Rap From Lester Holt, at ‘Dateline’ 20th Anniversary Celebration

NBC News threw a party last night, celebrating the 20th anniversary of its primetime newsmagazine “Dateline.”

While the mood was celebratory, it was hard to escape the elephant in the room. In an address to guests at the event, senior EP David Corvo paid tribute to a number of former “Dateline” staffers, including former anchor Ann Curry who bid farewell to the “Today” show earlier in the day.

“Ann had her own sweet, persistent way of coming into my office, day after day, trying to push us to do certain types of stories that we weren’t doing,” Corvo said. “Her legacy probably on the show more than anything else is ‘America Now,’ which has gotten a lot of awards, was fun to produce and made a difference in some people’s lives, which is what Ann is dedicated to.”

Dateline EP Liz Cole likened the party to a “family reunion,” and it did feel that way. TVNewser spotted Hoda Kotb (who at one point danced in the DJ booth), correspondents Chris Hansen, and Keith Morrison, original anchor Jane Pauley (but not Stone Phillips) and former “Dateline” correspondent and current Fox News anchor Jon Scott. The event, held at Catch in New York’s Meatpacking District, was the second 20th anniversary party for the series in less than a year (see our report from the first one, here). Former NBC News president and “Dateline” EP Neal Shapiro was there, as was current NBC News chief Steve Capus, who praised the program:

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Savannah Guthrie Named Co-Anchor of NBC’s ‘Today’

It’s official: NBC News has named Savannah Guthrie the new co-anchor of “Today.”

Guthrie, who co-anchored the program this morning, will officially debut on July 9. The announcement of her promotion comes a day after Ann Curry‘s tearful farewell to “Today” after just a year as Matt Lauer‘s co-anchor.

In a statement, “Today” show executive producer Jim Bell called Guthrie a “standout,” praising her “one-of-a-kind combination of sharp wit and approachability.”

“I’m thrilled to welcome Savannah as our newest co-anchor, and along with Matt, Al and Natalie, we’ve got the best morning team in the business,” he said.

Guthrie has been the program’s 9am co-host since June 2011. NBC did not announce who will succeed her in that role.

Guthrie joined NBC in 2007. Before joining “Today,” she spent three years as the network’s chief White House correspondent. In her new role, she will remain chief legal correspondent for NBC.

More from Bell, and from NBC News president Steve Capus, in the full release after the jump.

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John King Says Goodbye To ‘John King USA’

Yes, there was a very high-profile goodbye on a certain network morning show yesterday, but in the early evening, there was one more. CNN’s John King ended his show “John King USA” in a fitting way, playing a clip from his very first program.

That clip was an interview with Vicki Kennedy, the wife of former Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy, the subject was health care reform.

“This is my last day anchoring this program. Like the first day, health care reform was the day’s driving story,” King said, setting up the clip.


King ended the show with a back and forth with correspondent Kate Bolduan:

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‘Today’ Show Moves On … And About That Ann Curry Highlight Reel

These are days of transition at the “Today” show. After Ann Curry‘s emotional farewell Thursday, Savannah Guthrie was seated next to Matt Lauer this morning.

Stripped from this morning’s show, the custom announcement with the anchors names, instead, this aired:

“From NBC News, this is ‘Today,’ live from studio 1A in Rockefeller Plaza.”

Lauer and Guthrie welcomed viewers then got right to the news.

As for the future of the show, there’s no news there yet. At a party for “Dateline NBC’s” 20th anniversary last night, NBC News president Steve Capus did not give the timing or details of Curry’s permanent replacement, expected to be Guthrie. (Alex will have more on the party later).

One more note: this egregious error in this morning’s New York Times. TV critic Alessandra Stanley wrote about Curry’s final show, and included this about a highlight reel, which never aired, not on the East Coast or in any other version of the show:

Highlight reels are the gold watch of television news, and “Today” showed a long, affectionate one of Ms. Curry, from her first days in local news to her trip to the South Pole, where she planted the NBC flag. It included goofy moments clowning on the set, and also a tableau that seemed — under the circumstances — somewhat insensitive. Ms. Curry, ebullient as ever, leaned in to Mr. Lauer, who was wearing an arm sling. “Don’t come anywhere near me with a hug,” he said, jokingly, but perhaps not entirely so.

A “Today” spokesperson tells us there was no highlight reel, not even on standby. For what it’s worth, the online version of Stanley’s story already has two corrections.

> Update: The Times has corrected Stanley’s story. What she saw, which is available on, was a highlight reel used on Curry’s first day, June 9, 2011, not her last.

ABC News Takes Sheriff’s Quote Out Of Context In Colorado Wildfires Report

A report on the devastating Colorado wildfires on last night’s ‘ABC World News with Diane Sawyer” took comments from a local undersheriff out of context, and may have mislead viewers into thinking arson was the likely culprit behind the flames.

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Sawyer previewed the segment by saying “Tonight ABC News has learned that arson could be to blame” for the fires, throwing to a packaged story from reporter Alex Perez.

Perez said “The FBI and local authorities have yet to pinpoint what started the wild fire, but in an exclusive interview the county undersheriff tells us investigators believe this was arson,” featuring a brief clip of undersheriff Paula Presley saying “This in many ways is a type of terrorism, where someone is trying to destroy an entire city.”

In a statement, the El Paso County Sheriff’s Department took issue with the report: “The comments that ABC chose to air during the broadcast were taken out of context and misrepresented the facts. The cause of this fire is not yet known.” The full statement is after the jump.

ABC News said in a statement: “The introduction to the report notes that arson ‘could be to blame’ and the report says clearly that ‘FBI and local authorities have yet to pinpoint what started the wild fire.’ The rest of the report should have been consistent. We regret this and a full transcript of the sheriff’s remarks has been posted online and our subsequent report on GMA clarified this further.”

The full transcript of the interview shows that Presley repeatedly said that the origin of the fire needs to be investigated before any conclusions can be drawn. The closest she came to suggesting arson could be to blame was this statement:

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