Both NBC and MSNBC appear to have made a concerted effort to block Ronan Farrow from appearing on either network to talk about his bombshell report on New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s alleged abuse — instead opting to interview his co-author, Jane Mayer.
Farrow’s conspicuous absence seems to be the latest sign of tensions between Farrow and NBC since the network rejected his Pulitzer Prize-winning reporting on Harvey Weinstein’s history of sexual misconduct and assault.
Shortly after the story detailing Schneiderman’s pattern of domestic violence broke Monday night, Mayer hopped on the phone for an interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow. In the following hour, Mayer again appeared on MSNBC for another phone interview with anchor Lawrence O’Donnell.
Tuesday morning, the pattern continued with Mayer joining the “Morning Joe” crew for her first on-camera appearance during the 7 a.m. hour of programming.
Meanwhile, Farrow was making the rounds on rival network CNN, appearing on “The Situation Room” with Wolf Blitzer and “New Day” with Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota.
Farrow also gave interviews to Comedy Central’s Trevor Noah on “The Daily Show,” BBC’s “Newsnight,” and ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
NBC’s official explanation for dropping Farrow’s Weinstein investigation was it needed more time to verify its accuracy. Farrow subsequently left NBC entirely and signed a contract with HBO in January instead.
During Tuesday’s airing of “The Today Show” and “NBC Nightly News” with Lester Holt, Farrow’s name was never even uttered. Instead, anchors credited The New Yorker with breaking the story, without mentioning either authors by name.
Bizarrely, the anchor on Nightly News first introduces the story as “circling the New York tabloids,” as if Schneiderman’s alleged behavior is simply blind-item gossip.
NBC’s pettiness shows just how much its relationship with Farrow has deteriorated. The apparent resentment it feels about losing Farrow — who has now made a major name for himself as a serious investigative journalist after his short and failed stint as an MSNBC host — comes in the wake of numerous other headaches for the network.
After NBC News faced scrutiny over its handling of disgraced former Today Show host Matt Lauer, famed anchor Tom Brokaw is now the subject of his own sexual misconduct allegations.
In 2017, The Daily Caller discovered MSNBC star Chris Matthews had settled with a producer after accusations of sexual harassment. Matt Zimmerman, the former NBC News senior vice president, was also fired for engaging “in inappropriate conduct with more than one woman,” and the network’s in-house political analyst, Mark Halperin, was let go in 2017 after his own sexual misconduct allegations.
Since leaving NBC, Farrow has subtly attacked the company’s leadership for being unwilling to air his reporting. In December 2017, Farrow blamed “the men who maintain a veil of silence around” predators for why Weinstein was able to act with impunity for so long. He also thanked The New Yorker for proving “courage still exists” in journalism.
NBC executives tried stopping Farrow from investigating Weinstein and allegedly said they would not allow him to air audio of Weinstein admitting to molesting an Italian model, The Huffington Post reported in November 2017. NBC executives denied the report.
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