The Brian Williams New York Times video, annotated

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Joe Scarborough hails the iPad as 2010’s big story, but NBC’s Brian Williams has a different take in this hilarious video, in which he names The New York Times’ “discovery” of Brooklyn as last year’s number one news event. The anchor parodies the Times’ breathless awe over crossing the bridge and — *gasp* — discovering people here do and make things. “There are open air markets, like trading posts in the early Chippewa tribe, where you can make beads at home and then trade them for someone to come over and start a small fire in your apartment that you share with nine others,” Williams says as the others guffaw wildly. Did he exaggerate the Times’ fetishizing coverage for effect? To find out, we linked Williams’ transcript to the Times articles behind it:

WILLIAMS: I, however, am going to go a bit differently. I think the media story of the year, in 2010, was the NYT’s discovery of Brooklyn. Once a day, there’s a story about all the riches offered in that borough. There are young men and women wearing ironic glass frames on the streets. There are open air markets, like trading posts in the early Chippewa tribe, where you can make beads at home and then trade them for someone to come over and start a small fire in your apartment that you share with nine others. Artisanal cheeses. For sale, on the streets of an entire American borough. It’s been fascinating to watch the paper venture over the bridge. Venture through the tunnel. Go out to the outer reaches. The outer boroughs of the city. All different sections of the paper.

They are making grilled cheese sandwiches in the streets. There are roving wagons that will make you a – Brooklyn. Yes….it’s just a fantastic….it’s like Marrakech over there.

I’m leaving here to get to an artisanal market that just opened up today. It’s a flash artisanal market. The newest thing.

(Transcript via NYTPicker). And all those stories are just from 2010. What will The Times discover about Brooklyn in 2011?

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20 COMMENTS

  1. Tons of credit to Williams, but still, it’s funny to hear a TV news guy stick it to a newspaper. He’s acting as if TV news is right there on the cutting edge.

  2. Another funny, depressing thing: That kid, Brian he goes to at the end of the video, is Brian Stelter. He was the one who created that TV news blog, TV Newser, as a student at Towson University. It became so huge, the NYT hired him right after he graduated. Kills me every time I see him.

  3. No. I’ve said this before: I realized a few years ago I’ve never cared at all about knowing something first. Which, as a newspaper reporter, is pretty much the point.

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