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On Tuesday, Matt Lauer tweeted a good-natured apology to a former Today intern after word spread like digital wildfire that the young man had said Lauer was "not so nice" when he worked at the NBC morning show.
"@MarkZinni huh?" Lauer wrote. "Always tried to be nice Mark. Sorry you didn't think so. Hope you're doing well. Matt."
So, how did Lauer—and the Internet—get wind of Zinni's comment?
In the wee hours Tuesday, Daren Sweeney, an executive producer at Fox 8 News in Cleveland (where Zinni now works on air), tweeted: "'I was just a young kid with a bright future ahead of me,' @markzinni talking about internship at @todayshow and 'not so nice" @MLauer."
Zinni (who cheekily describes himself on Twitter as "big deal anchor/reporter") then retweeted Sweeney and bam—both Zinni supporters and Lauer fans poured out of the woodwork to comment.
Zinni addressed the hulabaloo on the Fox 8 website today, writing that he had an "amazing internship" at Today in 1997.
"If you know me, you probably know that I don't take myself too seriously," he wrote. "So, my answer was more of a joke about being young and naive during my time at Today, but I added that he wasn't nice to me. I didn't slam the guy, I just made an honest comment."
And, after he found out that Lauer had apologized?
"Bottom line, I was shocked Matt Lauer even bothered with me and, really, he remembers me? I'm flattered," Zinni wrote.
(E! Online and NBC are both members of the NBCUniversal family.)