NBC locks, loads Smoking Gun

Site founders to appear on 'Today,' 'Dateline'

NBC News announced Wednesday it has pacted with Court TV’s Smoking Gun Web site to collaborate on exclusive reports for the network, using documents and photos obtained by the popular Internet destination.

Smoking Gun founders William Bastone and Daniel Green will make periodic appearances on NBC News’ “Today” and primetime newsmag “Dateline” to discuss the stories.

“As we head into what will be a year of high-profile trials and a constantly evolving political landscape, to have the investigative resources of the Smoking Gun to bolster our own gives us an incomparable edge,” NBC News prexy Neal Shapiro said.

Since its launch 1997, Smoking Gun has emerged as a popular site for investigative exposes. It has broken high-profile stories on such celebs as Michael Jackson and Jennifer Lopez as well as on several reality TV show contestants.

Court TV purchased the Smoking Gun in 2000.

“When the Smoking Gun breaks a story, everyone is immediately talking about it, and we are excited about bringing their scoops and exclusive reports to NBC,” Court TV prexy-CEO Art Bell said.

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