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Scott Pelley Recounts CBS’ Boston Marathon Bombing Reporting

In a “60 Minutes Overtime” piece last night, Scott Pelley recounted 100 hours of CBS News’ reporting after last year’s Boston Marathon bombing story broke.

Pelley and his team were in CBS’ “Fishbowl” room at around 3pmET when “CBS Evening News” EP Pat Shevlin had a marathon picture sent to her phone. “In the picture, I saw red,” Pelley said, adding that although it was a lousy picture, it convinced him to go on-air at 3:09pmET.

Pelley explained why he was very careful not to initially use the “B word.” “We don’t know it’s a bomb…we know there are explosions.” He then spoke about the “pandemonium” that ensued when other networks started prematurely reporting arrests had been made.  “People are saying, ‘why aren’t we going on the air?’” Pelley said.

He answered his staff: “We don’t know this…we don’t report other peoples’ reporting, and we don’t have two sources on this, and I’m going to have to have two sources on this.” His restraint proved correct, as CBS never falsely reported arrests had been made like many of their TV News competition.

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