Andy Lack: Trump's Tweets About NBC News Are an "Out-of-Body Experience"

Andy Lack - Getty - H 2018

The network chairman said we're living in a new "golden age" of journalism.

NBC News chairman Andy Lack said it's "disconcerting" for his network to operate in a climate of intense hostility toward journalists, but he also said it's par for the course.

"We're not in a popularity contest, so we're used to being in conflict," Lack said on Monday night at an event held by New York University. "People get pissed off at us. We should expect to have the lowest approval ratings on some level, if you're doing your job in this climate."

But Lack said that Donald Trump's administration is particularly hostile toward the press. Trump has attacked NBC News on Twitter on multiple occasions, calling the network "dishonest and disgusting" in October.

"It's an out-of-body experience at times, when you're being tweeted about or attacked in the way the president is wont to do," Lack told Axios CEO Jim VandeHei.

The veteran news executive said that Trump's administration has provided a tremendous amount of fodder for investigative reporting.

"We're entering what for me as a journalist feels like a new golden age," he said. "I didn't ever think I'd get a swing like this in these times."

Lack also compared Trump's treatment of the press to the way Vladimir Putin approaches the media in Russia. "I think the president has a somewhat distant relationship with truth, as it relates to us as reporters," he said. "And I think he plays with us. And I think Putin plays with us. And in that sense, I think they have common ground."