TVSpy LostRemote AgencySpy PRNewser FishbowlNY FishbowlDC SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Posts Tagged ‘Fran Townsend’

John King: Mistakes Last Week Were ‘Embarrassing’

CNN’s John King appeared on Washington DC talk radio station WTOP this morning, and the subject of his reporting last week was a big part of the conversation.

King, among other reporters at other outlets, reported that Boston police had a suspect in custody. A half hour later, as other outlets (notably NBC’s Pete Williams) contradicted that report, King and CNN contributor Fran Townsend began to walk it back.

In the WTOP interview, as transcribed by Politico’s Dylan Byers, King said the error was “embarrassing”:

“The bigger part, beyond being personally embarrassing, is it’s tough for your viewers, who you want to trust you,” he continued. “So the one thing you do have to do is look in the camera and say, ‘We were wrong,’ and try to explain why we were wrong. In this case we had two reputable sources — one of mine, one of a colleague’s of mine — who have been reliable in the past, who simply had bad information. We had two — you never do that with one — and we went with it, and we had to correct it.”

It was also personal:
Read more

Mediabistro Course

Multimedia Journalism

Multimedia JournalismStarting September 25, learn how to create interactive packages with photos, audio, and video! Taught by a multiplatform journalist, Darragh Worland will teach you how to come up stories that would be best told in a multimedia format, and create original content for that package using photos, slideshows, and short video and audio pieces. Register now! 
 

After ‘This Week,’ Dennis Rodman Cancels TV Appearances

Following his…memorable… appearing on ABC’s “This Week,” ex-NBA star Dennis Rodman apparently had a number of other media appearances lined up. The key word there is had, because he seems to have been canceling them.

After “This Week.” Rodman was supposed to be interviewed by ESPN’s Bob Ley for an upcoming episode of “Outside The Lines.” As Those Guys Have All The Fun author James Andrew Miller noted, however, it didn’t play out:

 

Today, Rodman was supposed to appear on CNN’s “The Situation Room” with Wolf Blitzer, but as John Berman reported at 11:13, the basketball star “decided to cancel.” Berman then hosted Fran Townsend and John Avlon, who proceeded to trash Rodman for calling Kim Jong Un a “friend.”

Will Rodman turn up anywhere else on TV? We are keeping our ears to the ground, let us know if you hear of any bookings.

Mika Brzezinski Warms to Malaysians, Paris Hilton’s Parents

IMG_0635.JPGMika Brzezinski was this close to the parents of Paris Hilton last night — the same Paris Hilton who was in the news so often three years ago that Brzezinski took a stand and ripped the script, literally, refusing to read another story about the overexposed star.

Well, last night Brzezinski, along with Rick and Kathy Hilton, were among the honored guests as politics met Hollywood for an event honoring the prime minister of Malaysia Dato Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Abdul Razak and his wife, Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor who was presented the International Peace and Harmony award for her humanitarian work. (By the way, Mika nailed the names of both the prime minster and his wife).

The event at the St. Regis hotel in Manhattan was hosted by Jamie Foxx with special guests ranging from actors Robert De Niro, Charlize Theron and Emmy Rossum to former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger, former FBI director Louis Freeh and former DHS official, now CNN analyst Fran Townsend. (TVNewser rode up in the kitchen elevator with Townsend and Freeh — it had to be one of the safest in New York at that moment.)

Eagleburger apologized for not wearing a bow tie to the black tie event. “I thought I packed it, but when I looked in my bag it wasn’t there,” said Eagleburger, who served under Presidents Nixon, Carter, Reagan and GHW Bush. “Then I remembered yesterday was tax day and I know who took it!” he said to a laugh from the crowd.

Performances from Leona Lewis, the Harlem Boys Choir and a rendition of “We Are the World” led by Foxx and sung by De Niro, Theron and others capped off the night.

As for Brzezinski and the Hiltons — we don’t know if they had a chance to talk things over.

(Photo: MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski, with the parents of Paris Hilton in the rear, at an event sponsored by the BCIU – the Business Council for International Understanding).

White House Slams CNN over Potomac . What About the other Nets?

CNN1_9.11.jpgPerhaps this was not the best day to be conduct a training exercise on the Potomac River, not far from the Pentagon which was attacked eight years ago this morning. Still, when reports began to surface that a suspicious vessel had been spotted on the Potomac, CNN went into high gear. They got their Homeland Security, Pentagon and White House correspondents on the case, even discussing the situation with former Homeland Security adviser, now CNN contributor, Fran Townsend to help with their coverage — coverage that has since drawn the ire of the White House.

At 10:05am CNN interrupted live remembrances of the 9/11 memorials to report on the situation. “We have seen at least one boat try and challenge” a security zone set up around the Pentagon, said Homeland Security correspondent Jeanne Meserve. “A cat and mouse game going on there,” she added. Shots were fired, they claimed.

While the observations may have been accurate, it was all a drill. A fact CNN would not report until 10:32am. There were no shots fired. Live or blank. The report claiming 10 rounds had been fired came from Coast Guard audio transmissions CNN aired — again, all part of the exercises.

At an off-camera, on-the-record briefing as the truth was being revealed, CNN White House correspondent Elaine Quijano asked White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs whether the public should have been told about a training exercise happening on the eighth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. “If we set aside the media coverage, would you be asking this question? My only caution would be that before we report things like this, checking would be good,” Gibbs said.

NBC News Chief White House correspondent Chuck Todd took to his Facebook page to call out CNN, writing, “Weird to hear others blame the government for their own bad reporting,” and later, “Not only were there no gunshots, CNN reports what they heard on the radio scanner was someone SAYING ‘bang bang; they didn’t HEAR shots”

While CNN was in full breaking news mode, MSNBC remained with a re-broadcast of the “Today” show from 9/11/01. MSNBC spokesman Jeremy Gaines tells TVNewser, “We chose to do what is always prudent in these situations and gather the facts. Once we had the facts, we broke into our 9/11 tape and reported the news of the training exercise.” That happened at 10:37am.

FNC1_9.11.jpgFox News, meanwhile, began reporting on the incident at 10:12am. At 10:23 they began speculating that it might be an exercise. By 10:30 they’d confirmed it. TVNewser has obtained notes from FNC’s urgent queue including details from Bret Baier and Catherine Herridge in Washington, before information got on the air:

10:18am – “Caution in reporting per baier — it could be that if a boat wasn’t responding warning shots could be fired in the air or near the boat. so we should be careful about saying that the coast guard fired at or on the boat on the potomac.”

10:42am Herridge: “Dhs Spox Matt Chandler ‘No shots fired on the Potomac. Boats were part of a Coast Guard Exercise. Coast Guard will be taking all inquiries.’”

As for CNN, the network released a lengthy statement late this afternoon explaining their side of it: “CNN staff were monitoring law enforcement activity this morning given the 9/11 anniversary. After hearing a U.S. Coast Guard radio transmission that a boat had breached a security zone on the Potomac River a short distance from the Pentagon where the President had just attended a 9/11 anniversary ceremony, CNN contacted the Coast Guard public affairs office at the agency’s headquarters. The Coast Guard spokeswoman said she was unaware of any activity taking place on the Potomac River.

After hearing a further radio transmission about 10 rounds being expended, and after reviewing video of rapid movement by Coast Guard vessels as the President’s motorcade crossed the Memorial Bridge, CNN reported the story. Simultaneously, during a second phone call, the Coast Guard spokeswoman informed us that its National Command Center and other command posts knew nothing about any activity in the area.

Given the circumstances, it would have been irresponsible not to report on what we were hearing and seeing. As with any breaking news story, information is often fluid and CNN updated the story with the official explanation from the Coast Guard as soon as it was provided.”

• Click continued to see CNN’s original reports, including Coast Guard audio, and the follow-up reporting…

Read more