Axios came into this world with a helpful alliance or two. The keep-it-brief news site secured investment from NBC Universal and NBC News/MSNBC Chairman Andy Lack sits on the board of Axios. The site’s reporters are known to surface on MSNBC.

The advantages of the partnership aren’t hard to suss out. Money, expertise and exposure help a start-up distinguish itself in an industry with hostile fundamentals. The disadvantages stem from a trend over the past two decades or so: Major news providers like NBC News have increasingly become part of the story in national politics, what with allegations of bias coming from the right, allegations of false equivalence from the left, not to mention an implausible threat of license revocation from President Trump himself.

So partnering with an organization like NBC News means, by necessity, compromising a bit of your news coverage.

One solution is to omit any disclosure of Axios’s prominent conflict of interest, an approach that the site took in a Tuesday piece on the NBC News standby “Meet the Press.” It was a positive piece, with thoughts like these:

Driving the news: “Meet the Press” and its 12th moderator, Chuck Todd, hosted its annual Meet The Press Film Festival in Washington this weekend. In its third year, the festival has become a critical stop on the publicity tour for Hollywood giants looking to make an impact on Washington policymakers.

And these:

What’s next: NBC News is going all-in on the franchise ahead of the 2020 election. The show will move from its historic studio in Northwest Washington to a brand new studio and bureau near Capitol Hill.

Good stuff, especially if you’re Chuck Todd.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Erik Wemple Blog asked Axios if the piece was missing something. About an hour later, we received word that this editor’s note had been added: “Editor’s note: NBC is an investor in Axios and Andy Lack, chairman of NBC News and MSNBC, is a member of the Axios board. MSNBC & Axios engage in a weekday sponsored television appearance at 5:55am ET.”

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