Network News Anchor Baffled By Lack of Substance in Newspaper

NBC nightly news anchor Brian Williams blogged yesterday about how he's totally unsurprised that the Sunday New York Times is suffering rapidly dwindling circulation. 'Cause BriWi picked up one of these Sunday papers the other day and was totally unimpressed. "I must admit that on Sundays it becomes a tough paper to figure out. While this week's paper featured an op-ed piece by Elizabeth Edwards bemoaning the lack of serious, in-depth coverage of the political race, it's tough to figure out exactly what readers the paper is speaking to, or seeking." Then he sorta writes a Gawker post about it!

Consider this: the Sunday Styles section lead story on April 13th was "Scavengers on the Urban Savannah" (people buy things at flea markets!), and promoted on Page One was "A Sex Chair Becomes A Battlefield." Alrighty then.

He goes on like that for four more (amusing!) paragraphs, mocking all the fluff of the Sunday Times. That'll show them to run an Elizabeth Edwards op-ed! (In a section Brian presumably didn't read the rest of, as it's left out of his sarcastic assessment.)

Ok. Two problems. First, this is from the same Brian Williams post: "I'll say it again: Peggy is doing the work of her career and must be considered an early favorite for next cycle's Pulitzer for commentary." He is talking about Peggy Noonan. About this Peggy Noonan piece, specifically. The one that is all about how America shouldn't get hassled at airports, where "America" is "the middle-aged woman." A middle-aged white woman, named Peggy Noonan.

The second problem is that no one involved in the production of a nightly network evening newscast should be getting on anyone's case about mindless fluff overtaking "real news." Or, as Brian puts it: "A mea culpa and a thank you to the sharp-eyed Newsviners who wrote us (along with others) to tell us we had used file tape of penguins in a piece on the North Pole! There are no penguins on the North Pole."

What Times Is It? [DailyNightly]