NBC Staffer Said to be Fired Over Posting Vintage ‘Today’ Show Clip

Footage of Katie Couric asking, “Can you explain what Internet is?” goes viral, gets uploader reportedly canned

Last Updated: February 4, 2011 @ 12:12 PM

This is why people hate big, corporate media culture.

An NBC employee that posted vintage “Today” show clip from 1994 — in which then-anchor Katie Couric asks, “Can you explain what Internet is?” — to YouTube was apparently fired over it.

Rob Pegoraro, a Washington Post reporter Rob Pegoraro, wrote in a tweet that the unidentified staffer e-mailed him to say he had been let go:

The guy who posted the 1994 Today Show "what is Internet?" clip on YouTube e-mailed to say he got canned for that. Ugh.

A spokesperson for NBC Universal did not immediately return an e-mail seeking confirmation and comment.

The clip — featuring off-air footage of Couric, Bryant Gumbel and Elizabeth Vargas discussing what, exactly, this “World Wide Web” was — immediately went viral – and NBC has been asking YouTube to remove copies of the video.

As the Live Feed noted, current  "Today" host Matt Lauer even joked about the clip on the air:

"It's easy to laugh now, but we all felt that way," Lauer said. "It was a mystery to all of us."

He added: "I talked to Bryant last night about that clip. He has become quite tech savvy — he just bought a Sony Walkman."

Luckily, there are plenty of copies still out there on the Internet, like this one:

Watch it while you still can.