Editor's Notes at EditorsNotes.com

Thursday, September 30, 2004

Editor's Notes Exclusive: Aaron Brown on MemoGate

TVNewser catches CNN's Aaron Brown making a factual error about covering MemoGate, of all topics. "We did one story and moved on," Brown told The Oregonian. But TVNewser found significantly more stories than that.

In a statement exclusive to Editor's Notes, Brown called MemoGate "a story that deserved attention. A major TV news organization took a major hit." Brown says the story "took place during a presidential campaign. It was a presidential story and it was bound to get thrown into the cable TV mill." Though this statement was before his Oregonian interview raised suspicion with TVNewser, Brown was, nevertheless, surprisingly defensive in tone.

More from Brown later.

Update: Brown tells TVNewser: "I believe what I said to Peter was that we did 'the' story and moved on. The conversation had to do with the non stop 'mud wrestling' that the story generated which we did not do. But there is no doubt I considered it an important story and that we covered it.  I did a page two essay on it, we looked at the backlash among some affilates and its impact on media generally.  I did not and do not think it was the MOST important story and I did not allow it to dominate the program at the expense of all else as some others did. That's not what Newsnight is. That was the context of the conversation with Peter."