"It's a brave new world when journalists use sources like WikiLeaks," Andrea Mitchell reported on Tuesday's televised news broadcast.
The memos were made public by WikiLeaks, a whistle-blower Web site, then picked up by mainstream media outlets, including the New York Times.
The piece included analysis from Bob Steele, Phyllis W. Nicholas Director of the Janet Prindle Institute for Ethics and Distinguished Professor of Journalism Ethics at DePauw University.
"It is a complicated, complex equation in this case," he told NBC. "It really challenges the public to try and make sense of not only the documents but the process at play."
As Mitchell notes, "Everyone -- soldiers in the field to top national security officials -- are still trying to figure out if this is a game-changer, the release of so much raw intelligence on a Web site with a war in progress."
Video of the report is accessible at MSNBC.com.
In Monday's Wall Street Journal, a report by Jessica E. Vascellaro noted, "Bob Steele, the director of the Prindle Institute for Ethics at DePauw University, said that if WikiLeaks founders are fashioning themselves as journalists, they should be more open and transparent about their methods."
A 1969 graduate of DePauw, Robert M. Steele spent nearly two decades on the faculty of The Poynter Institute for Media Studies developing and leading seminars. Regularly quoted in news stories on issues of journalism ethics, Steele was most recently called upon by CNN for comments 10 days ago.