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Ed Driscoll

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July 15, 2011 - 2:48 pm

Or maybe not, the New York Post reports:

Their new bosses are driving NBC staffers crazy. Since Comcast took over the network from General Electric earlier this year, some staffers are complaining that their new health insurance doesn’t offer the same level of benefits for psychotherapy. Though GE employees were offered Aetna and United Healthcare, Comcast’s Magellan Behavioral health insurance doesn’t offer the same coverage, staffers say. An NBC source said, “It’s just different. There are more chances that a doctor is not in network, and there is a cost associated with that.” An NBC rep declined to comment.

In an environment as pressure-packed as Rockefeller Center must be, you really do want to keep your employees’ mental health as tip-top as possible, particularly when they have access to TV cameras and recording gear, and can respond with inter-office parodies. Like this gem, circa-1980:

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This Wikipedia page found by James Lileks, gives the backstory:

The moves (and failures) of NBC under Fred Silverman’s management generated a feeling of frustration and embarrassment among many of the network’s employees; they were not as proud of the network as the “Proud” campaign suggested, and a few inside staffers composed an alternative jingle to express their disappointment.

“We’re Loud – Proud as a Peacock” was a radio-style parody of NBC’s 1980-1981 “We’re Proud” campaign, recorded by the same production studio the network employed for “Proud” and using the same voice cast used for the original “Proud” campaign. “Loud” voiced the disappointment that many of NBC’s employees felt under Silverman’s leadership. The jingle was widely circulated to network staff and even sent out to local affiliates on cassettes as a joke at Christmastime.

The joke ended when Don Imus, morning drive-time host at WNBC radio in New York, played the parody on-air. Angered by Imus’ move, Silverman ordered a search-and-destroy mission to purge the network of any remaining copies of the parody. However, many copies remained, albeit poor audio quality and not fit for broadcast.

The line about jamming their most boring shows “up your nose,” is quite an interesting Freudian slip, considering the amount of white powder being inserted into the proboscises among the cast and producers of one of the very few hit shows the network had at the time. In a way, NBC’s Miami Vice was the Mad Men of the mid-1980s, a show dedicated to pointing out the dangers of vices which loads of people on and off-screen likely happily participated in only a few years prior.

(Via JammieWearingFool, who wonders how the new edict is playing out at MSNBC.)

Blogging since 2002, affiliated with PJM since 2005, where he is currently a columnist, San Jose Editor, and founder of PJM's Lifestyle blog. Over the past 15 years, Ed has contributed articles to National Review Online, the Weekly Standard.com, Right Wing News, the New Individualist, Blogcritics, Modernism, Videomaker, Servo, Audio/Video Interiors, Electronic House, PC World, Computer Music, Vintage Guitar, and Guitar World.

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