Matt LauerLatest News and Opinion
Posted Thursday 11/29/18 at 1:08PM EST
On the one-year anniversary of Matt Lauer's firing, Linda Vester calls for an independent investigation into misconduct at NBC News
Source: Fox News
Vester, a former NBC News correspondent who accused Tom Brokaw of sexual misconduct earlier this year, writes in a Fox News website Op-Ed: "Thursday will mark one year since Matt Lauer was fired from NBC’s Today show for sexual misconduct. But since that reckoning, has NBC News really changed? The culture and management of NBC News continue to silence women, while parent company Comcast apparently does nothing. It is time to hold the Comcast Board of Directors accountable. NBC News may have conducted a limited “culture review,” but I continue to hear from women working there that harassment still goes unpunished, that they still face intimidation, and that they still fear for their careers if they complain."
Posted Saturday 10/27/18 at 7:21AM EDT
NBC shouldn't be absolved for the Megyn Kelly debacle
Source: The Atlantic
From NBC News chairman Andy Lack saying "I condemn those remarks" to making sure that Today and NBC Nightly News covered Kelly's blackface controversy as a major news story, it seems like NBC is displaying "performances of innocence," says Megan Garber. "And yet NBC—there is a creaking inevitability to every element of this—is now trying to get ahead of the story that happens to be, once again, about itself," she says. "It is attempting to frame Kelly’s departure as a matter of morality rather than a matter of money." But don't forget that Lack has overseen the Access Hollywood Donald Trump tapes debacle, the Ronan Farrow Harvey Weinstein reporting debacle and the Matt Lauer sexual misconduct debacle. As Garber points out, NBC "has this week gone through its own ritual of attempted public conversion. NBC, too, is apolitical, the network is suggesting on its own behalf, as it reportedly prepares to pay Kelly a massive sum to take her act elsewhere. It, too, is innocent. After all, couldn’t the newscaster who insisted that 'Santa just is white' have changed her attitude, under NBC’s warm influence? Can’t a tiger change its stripes? NBC, too, was just asking questions." But Garber adds: "Here is another question, though: What if, when Megyn Kelly wondered aloud why blackface is bad, her ratings had been high? What if she had been a darling of advertisers? What if she had proved better able to return on the massive investment NBC had made in her, and for her? Here is the answer: NBC would very likely, right now, be selling a line about the relatability of Megyn Kelly’s confusion—about how so many Americans have more to understand about their shared history and shared culture, about the ways Kelly’s questions, innocent if ignorant, represent, in the end, a learning opportunity for all. Megyn Kelly, right now, would very likely be undergoing another time-honored American ritual, this one anchored in the sweeping demands of celebrity: the solemn ceremonies of 'moving on.' Apology, forgiveness, forgetfulness—the prodigal daughter, returned to 30 Rock once more."
- "The problem with Megyn Kelly Today is that it was always a morning talk show about a woman who really wanted a morning talk show," says Hank Stuever. "She came to it with only a nominal interest in anything but herself. She treats everything as a subject and only goes with what she think she already knows. She never had empathy, she's not a good listener, and she loves to make excuses. And for all the talk about how smart she is, she never seemed to do any homework. That's how you wind up being a person in 2018 who hasn't figured out why blackface is not okay and how culture and history got to the mutual understanding that it isn't."
- Kareem Abdul-Jabbar says Kelly's blackface defense was "hate-crime adjacent": "She’s an educated person with a news background, so there’s no way she is not informed on the issue. Which means she deliberately, without regard to the harm she would inflict on people of color, chose to pull out this old controversy. Not quite a hate crime, but hate crime-adjacent."
- How does NBC News chairman Andy Lack still have a job with a "record of deep shame" overseeing so many controversies?
- Kelly learned that TV star power is a delicate thing and cannot easily be transplanted -- just ask Katie Couric, Meredith Vieira, Jane Pauley and Anderson Cooper
- Networks won't touch Kelly if she leaves NBC News: She'll have very few big-time career opportunities
- Geraldo Rivera again defends Kelly: "She said something stupid, but she didn’t mean to hurt anybody’s feelings. She was just telling the truth about how she was raised and how things were back in the day."
- Could NBC News keep Kelly in an "Ann Curry situation" -- giving her fake jobs to save face?
- Watch a montage of Kelly's most controversial Megyn Kelly Today moments
- Relive the 10 "best" moments from Megyn Kelly Today
Posted Monday 8/27/18 at 3:09PM EDT
NBC News chairman Andy Lack is reportedly facing the boot
Source: Page Six
Page Six reports that "Comcast chiefs have been seeking a replacement for Lack." The 71-year-old Lack, who previously served as NBC News president, returned to NBC News in 2015 following the Brian Williams debacle. But all hasn't been well under Lack's watch over the past year and a half. There have been sexual harassment scandals involving Matt Lauer and Tom Brokaw. There was also his decision to lure Megyn Kelly with a $20 million-a-year deal. Meanwhile, Today is No. 2 among morning shows.
Posted Monday 7/30/18 at 7:08PM EDT
Meredith Vieira says "there was sexism for sure" during her time at 60 Minutes
Source: USA Today
Ronan Farrow's New Yorker article on Les Moonves also delved into allegations of sexual harassment at CBS News and 60 Minutes under the leadership of Jeff Fager. Vieira worked for CBS News from 1982 to 1993, including two years (1989-1991) as a part-time correspondent for 60 Minutes, from which was fired after requesting to continue working part-time due to her second pregnancy. "People know my story from CBS,” she said at the PBS portion of TCA TV press tour. “I think there was sexism for sure. I never was harassed per se, but I think it was difficult at the time on that show to navigate your way as a woman. I’ve never experienced harassment as a woman anywhere that I’ve been. Maybe they’re scared of me.” Vieira added that she has not read Farrow's article, noting that she has no connection to Moonves. Vieira was also asked about her former Today colleague Matt Lauer, and whether he could return to TV following his sexual harassment scandal. “I think it would probably be very difficult for him," she said. "Time tends to heal situations, and people evolve and they change and I don’t want to be an unforgiving person by any means, but I think that would be a tough road for sure.”
Posted Tuesday 7/24/18 at 2:04PM EDT
Matt Lauer, in his first interview since his sexual misconduct scandal, says he feels taken advantage of over his "difficult times" in dispute over his New Zealand ranch
The disgraced former Today host spoke with Radio New Zealand about a dispute over whether to have his New Zealand ranch opened to allow access to a state park. "I believe the groups that are behind this are in some ways unfortunately taking advantage of some difficult times I've been through over the past six months and I think they see me as an easy mark," Lauer said. "And what they're going to try to do is put this through, which would set a precedent because this has not been done ever before with a pastoral lease holder or property owner without that person's consent."
Posted Monday 7/23/18 at 9:27AM EDT
Matt Lauer is now fighting with hikers in New Zealand
Source: The Guardian
The disgraced former Today host's massive farm contains the only straight route to a conservation park frequented by hunters, hikers and fisherman. Lauer's lawyers want “hundreds of thousands of dollars” in compensation to open up his land.
Posted Thursday 6/14/18 at 10:21PM EDT
Matt Lauer was photographed one block from NBC's Today studio on Tuesday
Source: The Daily Mail
Did Lauer visit NBC this week? The disgraced former Today anchor was spotted wearing a Yankees cap on Tuesday, going into the entrance to an underground concourse that provides direct access to his former place of employment.
Posted Friday 6/08/18 at 8:49AM EDT
Matt Lauer will be allowed to keep his New Zealand ranch following a government inquiry into his conduct
Source: The New York Times
New Zealand has a "good-character test" for foreign property buyers, and his alleged Today show sexual misconduct had raised concerns that he was in violation of the rule. But the country's Overseas Investment Office said it found insufficient evidence that he he breached the test, so it will continue to “monitor the matter” and could revisit the case “should further information come to light.”
Posted Monday 5/14/18 at 11:28PM EDT
NBC News' many problems aren't just a coincidence -- they're symptoms
Source: The Washington Post
Matt Lauer, Brian Williams, Tom Brokaw, Joy Reid, Ronan Farrow, Hugh Hewitt -- and even the Megyn Kelly debacle -- are all symptoms of a larger problem. As Margaret Sullivan put it, "the network’s credibility is on the line. To critics it would seem that network leadership isn’t taking that seriously enough, believing perhaps that the public is mostly unaware, and that advertisers don’t mind. But a news organization’s reputation builds — or fades — over time. Does NBC really want to be seen as a place where stars are protected too vigorously, and where ratings and profits reign supreme? Given NBC’s prominence, its foibles hurt not only the network itself, its own journalists, and its viewers. Such self-sabotage also hurts American journalism overall at a time when there are more than enough external enemies waiting to pounce."
Posted Monday 5/14/18 at 12:29PM EDT
At NBC Upfronts, Seth Meyers jokes about reviving The Cosby Show, the Matt Lauer scandal and the Peacock's Chicago obsession
The Late Night host -- who was joined on stage by Andy Samberg -- also mocked the late Friday pickup of Brooklyn Nine-Nine: “I have to say, for NBC this upfronts week got off to a dramatic start when NBC picked up Brooklyn Nine-Nine after Fox canceled it," he said. "Yeah, fantastic news for a great show. But it still feels a little bit like NBC is Fox’s deadbeat friend. ‘Hey, uh, you gonna finish that? Can I have it?'”
Posted Wednesday 5/09/18 at 10:52PM EDT
Ann Curry: “I have not participated in any formal investigation by NBC on sexual harassment"
Source: The Daily Beast
Responding to Curry's comments to the Washington Post that she had reported a colleague's sexual harassment allegation against Lauer to NBC management, NBC News said its internal investigation found that “members of NBC News and Today show leadership at the time with whom we spoke denied having any such conversation with Curry.” Asked today about the network's report, Curry took issue with the characterization, saying in a statement: “I have not participated in any formal investigation by NBC on sexual harassment." Curry did say she received a brief phone call from an NBC lawyer the day before The Post story was published inquiring about her comments. In response, NBC News said she“declined to name the alleged complainant, nor would she identify the person in management to whom she says she raised a concern at the time about Lauer. This is accurately noted in our report.” ALSO: NBC says the retirement of its head of human resources has nothing to do with the Matt Lauer scandal: "Any insinuation of that is completely inaccurate."
Posted Wednesday 5/09/18 at 5:28PM EDT
NBC's head of human resources to depart amid Matt Lauer fallout
NBC had nothing but praise in announcing the June departure of Pat Langer, NBC Universal's executive vice president of human resources. "I cannot thank Pat enough for her leadership and contributions to our company,” NBC Universal's executive vice president Adam Miller said in announcing her departure. But even though an NBC investigation released today found that management wasn't told of Matt Lauer's sexual misconduct allegations before the events that got him fired, reports from Variety and Ann Curry said management was indeed previously informed of Lauer's behavior. As Joanna Rothkopf notes, "it could be that NBC’s HR department is so dysfunctional that misconduct allegations against the most prominent anchor at the network were misplaced—maybe forgotten under a pile of manila envelopes. Or it could be that the people who received the complaints intentionally chose not to escalate them, unaware of the demands of their job, or unwilling to alienate the figurehead of the network’s marquee program."
Posted Wednesday 5/09/18 at 1:30PM EDT
NBC News probe finds "no evidence" that leadership knew of Matt Lauer's sexual misconduct
The NBC News internal investigation found that "all four women who came forward confirmed that they did not tell their direct manager or anyone else in a position of authority about their sexual encounters with Lauer.” Although Ann Curry recently told The Washington Post that she warned management of a colleague's sexual misconduct complaint against Lauer, the report said Curry declined to name the manager she spoke to, and the investigation found no proof that NBC leadership talked to her about a complaint. The NBC News investigation searched Lauer's emails and text messages and found no evidence that management knew of his behavior, but the report noted that “the availability of evidence was impacted by the passage of time." ALSO: The report explained the button under Lauer's desk actually didn't lock the door to his office.
Posted Monday 5/07/18 at 10:00PM EDT
Meredith Vieira calls the Matt Lauer sexual misconduct scandal "heartbreaking"
“It’s heartbreaking when you’re in the business and you know people, or you think you know people, and then to hear the stories come out,” she told Andy Cohen on his SiriusXM radio show this morning, in her first extensive comments on the Lauer scandal. “I obviously was away from the Today show when all this happened with Matt. I was in L.A. actually when the news broke and (was) shocked, like everybody else."
Posted Monday 5/07/18 at 12:30PM EDT
Family Guy puts famous sexual abusers in one room, including Matt Lauer, Bill Cosby, and Kevin Spacey
Source: ET Canada
Last night's episode featured a "Sexual Abuser Meeting."