Update: NBC okays Boone Pickens “Iran” ad

August 27, 2008

We blogged earlier that NBC Universal had rejected T. Boone Pickens’ latest advertisement about U.S. dependence on foreign oil entitled “Iran,” even as its business network CNBC was always happy to hear what the oil tycoon had to say whenever oil prices hit record highs.

It seems Pickens may have spoken too soon when he issued a statement that cited NBC Universal as the only network to reject his 15-second ad. NBC, which couldn’t be reached earlier for comment, now tells us that they’ve greenlighted the commercial.

Pickens, who funded the “Swift Boat” attacks on Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry in 2004, had said in a letter to NBC Universal Chief Executive Jeff Zucker:

We are puzzled by your decision not to run this ad because by not running it, you are selectively applying the First Amendment and denying your viewers access to information that is important to their education and understanding of the issue of energy independence.

Here’s NBC’s response:

We have been airing seven of the eight advertisements that were submitted for broadcast by T. Boone Pickens. As we were in the process of clearing the eighth, Mr. Pickens released his statement prematurely.

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