NBC “Apologizes” For Edited Zimmerman Phone Call

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“The Washington Post reports that NBC has completed its investigation into the Today show’s mishandling of the police dispatcher’s conversation with George Zimmerman in the Trayvon Martin case with a finding of error, plus an apology. The apology addresses the show’s failure to accurately abridge the conversation between Zimmerman and the dispatcher in this high-profile case. This is how the program portrayed a segment of that conversation: Zimmerman: ‘This guy looks like he’s up to no good. He looks black’ Here what was actually said: Zimmerman: ‘This guy looks like he’s up to no good. Or he’s on drugs or something. It’s raining and he’s just walking around, looking about.’ Dispatcher: ‘OK, and this guy — is he black, white or Hispanic?’ Zimmerman: ‘He looks black.’ In an appearance on Fox News’s Hannity, Brent Bozell, president of the conservative Media Research Center, called this omission on the part of Today an ‘all-out falsehood’ — not just a distortion or misrepresentation. ‘On the good front, [NBC] acknowledges the mistake and apologizes to viewers for the bad editing. It’s a forthright correction and spares us any excuses about the faulty portrayal. On the bad front, the statement is skimpy on the details on just how the mistake unfolded,’ writes Erik Wemple. ‘In light of all that’s happened, Zimmerman may be a tough person for a news network to apologize to, but that’s just the point: Apologies are hard.'”

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