- The Washington Times - Friday, March 21, 2014

A couple of hosts at MSNBC and CNN are headed down the path of a duke-out, finding fault what constitutes a news moniker of “breaking news” and mocking the likes of broadcasts that blare such updates as: Nothing new to report on missing Malaysia plane.

And the rhetoric’s turned nasty enough to lead one Politico writer to opine: “[Expletive’s] getting real.”

The tiff started when MSNBC’s Chuck Todd tweeted a tightly worded lecture about CNN’s nearly ever-present tag of “breaking news” during its broadcasts — and then CNN struck back, accusing hypocrisy.

First, Mr. Todd’s tweet, in reference to a reported CNN update about the missing Malaysia flight that didn’t contain much new information: “Another day of ‘breaking news’ based on finding nothing or in other words, ‘not breaking news,’ ” he wrote, Mediaite reported.

Mr. Todd also tweeted: “Wait, so when did finding NOTHING get characterized as ‘breaking news?’ “

Vaughn Sterling from CNN jumped into the discussion, tweeting his reply: “@chucktodd Great question Chuck! Looks like it was around 6:45p.” Included with that tweet was a picture of one of MSNBC’s Politics Nation reports this week with the moniker “Breaking News: No trace has been found of the plane or the 239 people aboard.”

Mr. Sterling followed that tweet with another, that included a still shot of Mr. Todd’s own recent broadcast, with the television tag: “Breaking News: Search area is about three hours [flight] time from Perth.”

And one more, from Mr. Sterling, from another of this week’s MSNBC broadcasts, contained a still shot with the “Breaking News” tagline with “World Watching for MH370.” His accompanying tweet, Mediaite reported, was simply: “@HuffPostMedia @chucktodd.”

Mr. Todd hasn’t yet responded to the Twitter posts.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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