From Kate Snow's July 2 Daily Nightly blog: "This happens to be a particularly busy holiday Friday for us. Meaning, we have way too many stories to fit in our half hour broadcast."
Way too many stories? Really? Here are some of the "news stories" that made it onto the air for Friday's Nightly News broadcast:
* A two-minute story about problems with the new Apple iPhone 4. It's obvious why this story was included on the broadcast. Microsoft is NBC's partner in the MSNBC network. Apple is Microsoft's main rival. Any bad publicity for Apple is good for Microsoft. This is just a way for the Nightly News producers to slam a rival of NBC's partner.
* A two-and-a-half minute story about LeBron James. Of course, the producers made sure to include clips of LeBron's commercials for McDonald's and Nike, two major NBC sponsors.
* A one-minute story about a married military couple who reunited in the air when the pilot of an Air Force refueling plane refueled her husband's F-18 fighter jet. Maybe the Nightly News producers should have attached a "breaking news" banner to this story.
* A two-and-a-half minute story about a South African man who builds soccer fields and provides equipment for kids to play. Interesting story, but hardly deserving of time on Nightly News. Maybe it would be okay for "The Today Show".
Way too many stories? These four stories took up eight minutes of valuable news time--more than a third of the broadcast. If this is what made it onto the air, I'd like to see the stories that were rejected. Meanwhile, this broadcast did not report a single story from Europe, South America or Eastern Asia. But at least we know all about LeBron's McDonald's commercial and the problems with the iPhone. Nice job, Nightly News producers. Keep up the great work.