Rich Hanley, associate professor and director of the graduate journalism program in the in the School of Communications at Quinnipiac University, defended critics of NBC’s “Today” who claim the network was promoting a political agenda when it allowed Jenna Wolfe to announce today that she and her same-sex partner are expecting a baby this summer. The critics say the network should not have aired Wolfe’s announcement while the Supreme Court debates same-sex marriage cases.
“The only agenda NBC pursues is one that includes profit at the end of the quarter,” Hanley said. “The announcement itself simply falls in line with what is now typical on television news, where the boundary between the personal and the professional was erased long ago. NBC itself promotes ‘Today’ hosts as bringing their personal lives to the program. This has nothing whatsoever to do with the Supreme Court case. It is a product of timing, not intent to capitalize on a particular part of the news cycle.”
If you’re interested in interviewing Hanley, please contact John Morgan, associate vice president for public relations at Quinnipiac University, 203-206-4449 (cell) or 203-582-5359 (office).