CONTAINING LINKS TO 51991 STORIES FROM THE NETWORKS' NIGHTLY NEWSCASTS
     TYNDALL HEADLINE: HIGHLIGHTS FROM NOVEMBER 15, 2013
The aftermath of Thursday's Story of the Day -- President Barack Obama's attempt to mend his broken healthcare reform promise -- was Story of the Day again, although only NBC chose it as its lead. Kelly O'Donnell kicked off from Capitol Hill, where the House voted to amend the Affordable Care Act. The other two newscasts led with isolated stories: Linsey Davis covered a meningitis outbreak on the campus of Princeton University for ABC, which neither of the other two newscasts mentioned. CBS' John Miller filed a follow-up on the rampage at Los Angeles International Airport that made headlines at the start of the month: neither NBC nor ABC found it newsworthy.    
     TYNDALL PICKS FOR NOVEMBER 15, 2013: CLICK ON GRID ELEMENTS TO SEARCH FOR MATCHING ITEMS
click to playstoryanglereporterdateline
video thumbnailCBSTyphoon Haiyan batters The PhilippinesRebuilding of Tacloban begins amid long linesSeth DoaneThe Philippines
video thumbnailNBCTyphoon Haiyan batters The PhilippinesRituals of daily life maintained in TaclobanHarry SmithThe Philippines
video thumbnailNBCTyphoon Haiyan batters The PhilippinesIDF military unit sets up clinic in Bogo CityNancy SnydermanThe Philippines
video thumbnailCBSHealthcare reform: universal and managed carePresident Obama allows individuals to keep plansMajor GarrettWhite House
video thumbnailNBCHealthcare reform: universal and managed careHouse OKs pared down plans, 39 Democrats defectKelly O'DonnellCapitol Hill
video thumbnailABCCanada politics: Mayor Rob Ford of Toronto under fireCity council strips him of his powersDavid WrightLos Angeles
video thumbnailABCSuburban Detroit homeowner shoots woman on porchShe sought help after crash; he faces murder rapAlex PerezChicago
video thumbnailABCSinkholes swallow land in limestone regionsHomeowners' insurance can be tardy with repairsSteve OsunsamiFlorida
video thumbnailCBSBig cat conservation publicized by photographerNational Geographic snaps snow leopards, tigersChip ReidNew York
video thumbnailNBCTerminally-ill children aided by Make a Wish charityCured leukemia boy feted as Batman's sidekickJoe FryerSan Francisco
 
TYNDALL BLOG: DAILY NOTES ON NETWORK TELEVISION NIGHTLY NEWS
WHEN IS A GRANDFATHER NOT A GRANDFATHER? The aftermath of Thursday's Story of the Day -- President Barack Obama's attempt to mend his broken healthcare reform promise -- was Story of the Day again, although only NBC chose it as its lead. Kelly O'Donnell kicked off from Capitol Hill, where the House voted to amend the Affordable Care Act. The other two newscasts led with isolated stories: Linsey Davis covered a meningitis outbreak on the campus of Princeton University for ABC, which neither of the other two newscasts mentioned. CBS' John Miller filed a follow-up on the rampage at Los Angeles International Airport that made headlines at the start of the month: neither NBC nor ABC found it newsworthy.

The President on Thursday had extended a waiver of the ACA's requirement for minimum standards of coverage for the renewal of any existing individual health insurance plan. Longstanding plans, those in effect before the law was passed, had already enjoyed such a waiver. Obama announced that the law should not forbid more recent non-comprehensive plans to be grandfathered-in either. ABC's Jonathan Karl and CBS' Major Garrett followed up from the White House: Karl pointed out that any such waivers must be approved by each state's insurance commission; Garrett listed Washington, Arkansas, Vermont and Rhode Island as already rejecting the President's fix.

On Capitol Hill, the angle that NBC's O'Donnell settled on was that 39 Democrats joined the Republican majority to pass an amendment that was yet more sweeping than the President's proposal. It would not only allow the renewal of existing non-comprehensive policies, it would defang the law's minimum requirements altogether, allowing such insurance to be offered anew, in the future, to non-grandfathered individuals.

Just as George Stephanopoulos (at the tail of the Avila videostream), host of ABC's Sunday morning show This Week, had opined Thursday, so David Gregory, host of NBC's Sunday Morning show Meet the Press opines now: at stake in the healthcare reform rollout is the clout of the Obama Presidency for the entire remainder of his second term. All we need now is Bob Schieffer of CBS' Face the Nation and such an opinion will officially acquire the status of Conventional Wisdom (Schieffer instead filed another 50th anniversary report from Dallas on the JFK assassination, but this one was not posted online as a videostream).

Incidentally, you know how ABC's Jonathan Karl likes to showcase his own act of asking questions at the White House press briefing room in the process of newsgathering, irrespective of the newsworthiness of the answer he receives? Here earlier this week Karl showed himself questioning, and here, previously, we saw press secretary Jay Carney sarcastically imitating Karl's histrionic style. Well, now Jonathan does it again.


PULLING OUT OF THE PHILIPPINES Typhoon Haiyan, which dominated the news at the start of the week with its devastation of the east coast of The Philippines, has fallen off ABC's radar. ABC (16 min v NBC 35, CBS 28) has covered it least heavily throughout even though, funnily enough, Neal Karlinsky was the first correspondent on the nightly newscasts to warn of its impending arrival even before it made landfall, in the lead slot of last Thursday's newscast. A week later, Haiyan was not even mentioned on ABC, even in passing. NBC's Harry Smith and CBS' Seth Doane both filed from Tacloban, where they had been based all week.

NBC's in-house physician Nancy Snyderman continued her focus on the healthcare emergency. Wednesday she attended the Mammoth Medical Mission clinic in the city hall of Tanauan; now she is in Bogo City to publicize the military efforts of medics from the Israel Defense Force. Dr Nancy similarly praised the IDF's exemplary emergency care in Port-au-Prince after the earthquake in January 2010. This time, a pregnant woman goes into labor at the Bogo City clinic and a healthy baby is born. His name is Israel.

At ABC, instead, the force of nature that attracted Steve Osunsami's attention was the sinkhole in Dunedin Fla that both he and NBC's Janet Shamlian covered on Thursday. In Osunsami's follow-up, he repeated the same visual embellishments, juicing up his story with imaginary computer-graphic Virtual View animation and reruns of video of different sinkholes swallowing other property on previous occasions.


METAPHOR WATCH NBC's In Plain Sight, ABC's Hidden America: by using the same metaphor for their special reporting on poverty (NBC here, here, here, and here; ABC here, here, and here), both networks implicitly publicize their own failure to focus the proper spotlight on the poverty beat. ABC's latest Hidden America entry was assigned to Josh Elliott, who profiled 13-year-old Chris Miller as his network's Person of the Week, a personification of the 1.4m teenagers and children nationwide who have the role of caregiver for a disabled adult family member in their household.

Elliott really did present Chris as a symbolic representative, an abstraction: he did not even tell us where the teenager lives, or the full name of grandmother Dixie, whom he tends to.


CRIME BLOTTER NBC and ABC turned to a killing in the Detroit suburbs, with Kevin Tibbles and Alex Perez respectively. Both played 911 EMS audio of a pre-dawn incident in which a homeowner with a shotgun pumped a fatal blast into the face of a 19-year-old African-American woman who was on his porch. Renisha McBride was apparently drunk, recovering from a car crash. Theodore Wafer, a 54-year-old white man, will be prosecuted for murder. NBC's Tibbles consulted Lisa Bloom, his network's in-house legal eagle, for a brief on self-defense laws. Bloom happened to be a frequent commentator for NBC in the murder of Trayvon Martin, a case that Tibbles cited in his coverage, although Perez did not.

CBS' crime story came from Bill Whitaker in Los Angeles. It is a whodunit. In February of 2010, the McStay family -- father Joseph, mother Summer, toddlers Gianni and Joseph -- went missing from their suburban San Diego home. The search is now over. Their grave has been found in the San Bernardino Desert.

Away from the true-crime beat, CBS anchor Scott Pelley also gave airtime to the public policy of violent crime prevention. His network has covered the aftermath of Newtown Conn grade school shooting most heavily all year, with Pelley himself taking the lead. Again he sat down with bereaved activists Nicole Hockley and Bill Sherlach, whose lobbying group is called Sandy Hook Promise, to discuss the diminishing prospects for federal gun control legislation and the wisdom of preventive screening for mental illness in children.


THE DAILY TORONTO SHOW The travails of Mayor Rob Ford of Toronto continue to catch ABC's attention. Neal Karlinsky filed on Wednesday; David Wright now, with a highlight reel of apologies. Wright did that lazy thing that his colleague Jonathan Karl did on Wednesday, and Robin Roberts did last week. He ran a clip of Comedy Central's Daily Show to signify the buzz around the mayoral story. To reiterate: Jon Stewart is a satirist of the news, so a Stewart clip is not necessarily a validation of any given story's importance; sometimes it is a marker of its stupidity.

It being Friday, ABC also assigned Nick Watt to his usual Instant Index round-up of video that is neither newsworthy because it is important, nor because it reflects the journalistic judgment of ABC News -- but because it went viral. Meet Jean-Claude van Damme and friends.


BAT-NEWS In further end-of-the-week frivolity, neither Aditi Roy on ABC, nor Joe Fryer for NBC's Making a Difference series, could resist playing that Adam West theme music or swirling that colorful logo as an intertitle as they followed five-year-old leukemia patient Miles Scott through the streets of San Francisco on his Make-a-Wish foundation stunt. The Riddler was there, as was the Penguin. It was covered in the Gotham City Chronicle under the bylines of Clark Kent and Lois Lane. A crowd of 13,000 watched the Bat-Kid in action.


ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL? NBC had Ron Mott file a portmanteau package on the anxiety about brain injury from playing football. On the NFL level, he cross-promoted Matt Lauer's interview for Today with former quarterback Brett Favre, which Mott tagged as an exclusive. On the Pop Warner level, he documented declining levels of football playing by children. On the high school level, he prepared for Friday Night Lights in New Jersey. Go Mountaineers! Go Soaring Eagles!


BURNING BRIGHT CBS loves to cover photography of any kind, the moving image recording the still one. Artistic, or archival, or journalistic, or activist -- these are all examples from its playlist from this year alone (by contrast, ABC and NBC offer only a handful of examples). Now nature photography. Chip Reid brings us mesmerizing images from the book Tigers Forever by Steve Winter of National Geographic.