For the second time, NBC is under public scrutiny for sitting on a story that involved a powerful man saying on tape that he had sexually assaulted a woman.
"Look, you would have to ask NBC and NBC executives about the details of that story".
Farrow asked NBC News if he could bring his work to a print outlet, this person said, thinking that sources might be more willing to cooperate if they did not have to go on camera. The Post said it took five hours to vet and post the story after receiving the tip. Now the network is being forced to defend itself on why it had let one of the biggest scoops in recent memory slip through its fingers.
Why didn't NBC News break the Harvey Weinstein bombshell that ultimately ended up in The New Yorker under the byline of one of its contributors?
The Washington Post published the now-infamous Access Hollywood tape that included then-candidate President Donald Trump talking about grabbing women without their permission on October 8.
NBC's position has been, essentially, that Farrow didn't have the goods until he left, a characterization other sources familiar with his investigations dispute. Weinstein personally threatened to sue him while he was working on the report, Farrow said, adding that his story was clearly "reportable" when NBC had it.
Instead, Farrow's story - and the audio, from a 2015 New York Police Department sting - appeared Tuesday on the website of The New Yorker. It is not accurate to say it was not reportable. "In fact, there were multiple determinations that it was reportable at NBC".
NBC News was aware of the footage for almost four days before the Post published it, saying they sat on it so lawyers could finish reviewing it. He greatly expanded the scope of his reporting.
"The incredible story that we all read yesterday, was not the story that we were looking at when we made our judgment several months ago", Oppenheim told employees during a company meeting in a transcript obtained by TheWrap.
Sallie Hofmeister, Weinstein's representative, did not immediately return a request for comment.
Farrow, who joined NBC in 2014 and formerly hosted an MSNBC program, appears to have been well along in his reporting about Weinstein at the time NBC chose to drop the story.
The Daily Beast noted that, internally at NBC, there is a dispute over how many sources Farrow had on the record when he walked out of the door, a sentiment echoed by sources speaking to BuzzFeed News.