Tale of the Tape: did Billy brag about it? Did someone at NBC leak it to get Billy?

There’s a couple of interesting stories coming out about the tape. One of the things that I’ve wondered about is why it surfaced when it did, two days before the debate, and why it got leaked to the Washington Post.

Some answers are starting to come out in a nebulous way.

First, there’s a story floating around that Billy Bush was bragging back in August at a party at the Olympics that he had a tape of Trump being a real dog. If that’s accurate, Billy himself may have started this little ball rolling downhill until it became an avalanche. (And, in his memory of it, Billy probably just focused on Trump, without realising how badly he came across himself.)

Vanity Fair article: “Billy Bush Might Be to Blame for that Trump Video Leak”


But there’s another spin floating around: that it may have been Trump’s reaction to Clinton goading him about the Miss Universe contestant that triggered NBC to do a search of the Access Hollywood archives, where they found the tape. By this version, Billy’s bragging may have contributed, but it was the Trumpster’s Twitter storm that really jogged NBC into action.

(If so, then whoever in the Clinton camp who laid the plans for that deep trap, including the articles by Cosmo and the Guardian about Trump and Ms Machado, really earned his/her salary!)

But if NBC found the tape and was going to release it, why the leak? And by whom?

More murkiness, but People has floated an article that one of the reasons NBC was delaying was they were exploring the idea of editing their guy Billy out of the version they would release.

If that’s so, suddenly the leak makes sense: someone else at NBC said “screw that”, and picked up the phone to call the Post.

NBC denies the suggestion it was going to edit out Billy, journalistic integrity, etc. But according to Vanity Fair, the version that they released on Friday does in fact leave out Billy’s comment about the Donald having a hot actress as the bus arrived.

One can imagine the crisis in NBC at the thought of releasing a tape that shows one of their hot properties being a pig and egging on the Trumpster. Even if NBC was going to release it unedited, the dithering may have contributed to the leaker taking unilateral action.

So then who was the leaker? Speculation in the People article is that it was someone high up in the NBC food chain.

That also makes sense to me, because once the tape was found, it would likely be restricted distribution at NBC while they dithered, if they had only recently re-discovered it and saw what dynamite it was, both for Trump and for Billy.

Which also suggests that in addition to the concern that NBC might not release the tape, the leaker wasn’t too fond of Billy …

Really, all of this makes the intrigues of the court of the Borgias seem rather tame.

Somewhat of a nit pick, but it’s been bothering me: Is this really a “leak”. This stuff was not some personal possession of Trump that someone usurped and released, no? I know a lot of news sources are referring to this a leak, but I don’t see how it fits the definition, which I always assume is something that is private or classified or otherwise something that was NOT supposed to be seen by the general public.

It was not available to the general public, and was not ever published, until now. Someone went out of their way to get it found and released. It would not have been seen otherwise. To me, all that adds-up to it being a leak.

It wasn’t leaked from Trump, but from NBC, contrary to NBC’s plans.

Similarly, if tape from the Apprentice now finds its way to the Post, contrary to the security steps of the producer of the show, that would be a leak.

But it was still said on a live media microphone. It wasn’t published until now, but it was recorded with the expectation that it could be published. It’s no more a “leak” than the deleted scenes you see on a DVD’s extra features.

The tape has a huge drop-out in the middle, indicating that it’s been played a few times, and at least once on a bad machine. I think this is one of those tapes that has floated around for a while. It’s not as if every piece of b-roll from Access Hollywood is safeguarded. After that days show is edited, it either goes on a shelf or was designated to be bulk erased, and some camera op or editor kept this particular tape for giggles. A hundred people might have had access to it since it was shot.

From the interviews I heard on my local NPR radio, NBC was delaying because of internal legal discussions. It’s possible NBC could be sued for secretly recording a private conversation (whether or not a suit would be successful, the lawyers had to make sure NBC’s ass was covered). So the leaker sent it where there’d be no such liabilities and they could publish quickly.

If Billy had anything to do with this, he really is clueless about how wide fallout is for a bomb like this. He lost his job over it and looks, to the world, like a idol worshiping teen aged idiot.

As for secretly recording conversations? Seriously, when the participants are wearing microphones to pick up their statements? I think secret requires something more than that.

Are you offering legal advice to NBC? It sounds like a silly worry, but it’s not my job to minimize legal risks. :smiley:

Mark Burnett is claiming that he has no power to release anything and it’s all covered in contracts with MGM. He denies making any threats about leaks. He is friendly with Trump but has also backed democrat candidates including Hilary so who knows. I do know there was a ton of footage. Penn Jillette has said in an interview in the past that sometimes the boardroom scenes would go on for four hours. Apparently Donald likes to hear himself talk and acted like he was really mentoring these B-list celebrities in business.

I have no personal knowledge but from everything I’ve read and heard network lawyers take the concept of erring on the side of caution to absurd levels.

No, I was commenting on the stupidity of their thought that Trump would claim any privacy was involved when he *knowingly *wore a “live mic.” That doesn’t mean that I don’t think the tape surfaced in the better way. Trump loves to abuse the legal system with frivolous lawsuits, so they took the better route.

Keep in mind that MANY people typically would see a video such as this. The camera man, sound guy, people who edit the video, people who review the video. And other people walking by when they are reviewing/editing the video “Hey, look at this!”

So could have been MANY different people to leak such a thing!

Yeah, things are different now, but when that was shot the tape, probably BetaCam SP, was basically a leftover after being digitized into the editing system. Anyone could have laid claim to it and nobody would have said a thing. Could have been an intern assigned the crap job of logging the huge pile of B-roll tapes as well, who was appalled at these two jerks and stuck it in their messenger bag.

The only thing that keeps more people from releasing more of this stuff is legal threats, like the one issued by the producer of The Apprentice who knows just how much worse stuff is out there.

On tonight’s CBS Evening News, they have a bit from Entertainment Tonight of Trump leching after a 10 year old girl.

Does anyone else keep thinking of Billy Bragg for some reason?

I assume that was an intentional pun, no?

If Billy himself leaked this video, then he’s a true patriot.

I know nothing about BB’s politics or familial loyalty (I didn’t even know he was that kind of Bush until a few days ago), but is it possible he was scoring one for cousin JEB? One might wonder why he waited so long if that were the case, but it doesn’t seem terribly far fetched.

Tangentally, People reports that in 1997, Trump walked in on Miss Teen USA contestants while they were changing. ‘Don’t worry, ladies,’ said Trump, ‘I’ve seen it all before.’ One contestant made the allegation, and three more corroborated her story. Eleven contestants ‘had no recollection’ of the incident.

And there is the child rape allegation

And now the ‘pussy’ tape.

It seems like we are suddenly hit with pussy galore!