The format of this episode was interesting as it followed the various things going on throughout a single episode of News Night. It was different for the show, but it worked from an entertainment standpoint. So, how did the show fare as far as the facts go this week? Let's find out.
Interestingly, in New York City, March 16th, 2012 had precisely twelve hours of daylight. Seems the only good reason to choose this day, unless you want to break the news of explosions in Damascus or the release of the George Zimmerman 9-1-1 tape. Okay, maybe those are better reasons. Or at least they would be if the Damascus bombing hadn't happened on March 17th. The Zimmerman tape was released on the 16th and the full audio is here, and many other places. What Maggie did to the tape is almost exactly what an NBC producer did to it.
The Kandahar Massacre is mentioned briefly, and this one is timely as that event occurred on March 11th. However, it wasn't until March 23rd that the United States officially charged Robert Bales with the murders. So, discussion of Bales specifically may have been a little premature on the 16th.
There most certainly are people named Simon Weingarten, but not a single one of them have been linked to a fictitious group called the Righteous Daughters of Jihadi Excellence. Until this week's show anyway. So that whole bit was made up. On other made up stuff notes, the talking heads that Will interviews on News Night are always made up people. They are frequently based on actual people, but discussing who they are based on requires some speculation since I'm not in the writer's meetings, so I will not discuss those here, unless it is truly controversial and should be brought up (see Sutton Wall).
The realities of the Tyler Clementi situation are a little muddier than Mackenzie leads us to believe. No video of Clementi and his male "visitor" was ever posted online. It was streamed over the internet and witnessed by about five people. Clementi was also reportedly not closeted at all, and therefore not outed by any of the happenings during the days before his suicide. I will use a Wikipedia link this time because it seems to aggregate the information on the case better than any other single site. I read about 15 other articles to verify that this one is good.
A yottabyte is a real thing. To put it in terms you may understand, it's a trillion terabytes. That's a lot of storage. And, a quintillion is a 1 with eighteen zeroes behind it.