Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 27

Thread: MSNBC Takes Incendiary Hosts From Anchor Seat (buh-bye loserman!)

  1. #1
    Jets Insider VIP
    JetsInsider.com Legend
    Charter JI Member

    Join Date
    May 1999
    Posts
    31,408

    MSNBC Takes Incendiary Hosts From Anchor Seat (buh-bye loserman!)

    [QUOTE][B]MSNBC Takes Incendiary Hosts From Anchor Seat
    By BRIAN STELTER[/B]

    MSNBC tried a bold experiment this year by putting two politically incendiary hosts, Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews, in the anchor chair to lead the cable news channel’s coverage of the election.

    That experiment appears to be over.

    After months of accusations of political bias and simmering animosity between MSNBC and its parent network NBC, the channel decided over the weekend that the NBC News correspondent and MSNBC host David Gregory would anchor news coverage of the coming debates and election night. Mr. Olbermann and Mr. Matthews will remain as analysts during the coverage.

    The change — which comes in the home stretch of the long election cycle — is a direct result of tensions associated with the channel’s perceived shift to the political left.

    “The most disappointing shift is to see the partisan attitude move from prime time into what’s supposed to be straight news programming,” said Davidson Goldin, formerly the editorial director of MSNBC and a co-founder of the reputation management firm DolceGoldin.

    Executives at the channel’s parent company, NBC Universal, had high hopes for MSNBC’s coverage of the political conventions. Instead, the coverage frequently descended into on-air squabbles between the anchors, embarrassing some workers at NBC’s news division, and quite possibly alienating viewers. Although MSNBC nearly doubled its total audience compared with the 2004 conventions, its competitive position did not improve, as it remained in last place among the broadcast and cable news networks. In prime time, the channel averaged 2.2 million viewers during the Democratic convention and 1.7 million viewers during the Republican convention.

    The success of the Fox News Channel in the past decade along with the growth of political blogs have convinced many media companies that provocative commentary attracts viewers and lures Web browsers more than straight news delivered dispassionately.

    “In a rapidly changing media environment, this is the great philosophical debate,” Phil Griffin, the president of MSNBC, said in a telephone interview Saturday. Fighting the ratings game, he added, “the bottom line is that we’re experiencing incredible success.”

    But as the past two weeks have shown, that success has a downside. When the vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin lamented media bias during her speech, attendees of the Republican convention loudly chanted “NBC.”

    In interviews, 10 current and former staff members said that long-simmering tensions between MSNBC and NBC reached a boiling point during the conventions. “MSNBC is behaving like a heroin addict,” one senior staff member observed. “They’re living from fix to fix and swearing they’ll go into rehab the next week.”

    The employee, like others, spoke on condition of anonymity because the network does not permit it people to speak to the media without authorization. (The New York Times and NBC News have a content-sharing arrangement exclusively for political coverage.)

    Mr. Olbermann, a 49-year-old former sportscaster, has become the face of the more aggressive MSNBC, and the lightning rod for much of the criticism. His program “Countdown,” now a liberal institution, was created by Mr. Olbermann in 2003 but it found its voice in his gnawing dissent regarding the Bush administration, often in the form of “special comment” segments.

    As Mr. Olbermann raised his voice, his ratings rose as well, and he now reaches more than one million viewers a night, a higher television rating than any other show in the troubled 12-year history of the network. As a result, his identity largely defines MSNBC. “They have banked the entirety of the network on Keith Olbermann,” one employee said.

    In January, Mr. Olbermann and Mr. Matthews, the host of “Hardball,” began co-anchoring primary night coverage, drawing an audience that enjoyed the pair’s “SportsCenter”-style show. While some critics argued that the assignment was akin to having the Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly anchor on election night — something that has never happened — MSNBC insisted that Mr. Olbermann knew the difference between news and commentary.

    But in the past two weeks, that line has been blurred. On the final night of the Republican convention, after MSNBC televised the party’s video “tribute to the victims of 9/11,” including graphic footage of the World Trade Center attacks, Mr. Olbermann abruptly took off his journalistic hat.

    “I’m sorry, it’s necessary to say this,” he began. After saying that the video had exploited the memories of the dead, he directly apologized to viewers who were offended. Then, sounding like a network executive, he said it was “probably not appropriate to be shown.”

    In an interview on Sunday, Mr. Olbermann said that moment — and the perception that he is “not utterly neutral” — restarted months-old conversations about his role on political nights.

    “I found it ironic and instructive that I could have easily said exactly what I did say, exactly when I did say it, if I had been wearing a different hat, and nobody would have taken any issue,” he said.

    “Countdown” will still be shown before the three fall debates and a second edition will be shown sometime afterwards, following the program anchored by Mr. Gregory.

    The change casts new doubt on what some staff members believe is an effective programming strategy: prime-time talk of a liberal sort. A like-minded talk show will now follow “Countdown” at 9 p.m.: “The Rachel Maddow Show,” hosted by the liberal radio host, begins Monday.

    Mr. Griffin, MSNBC’s president, denies that it has an ideology. “I think ideology means we think one way, and we don’t,” he said. Rather than label MSNBC’s prime time as left-leaning, he says it has passion and point of view.

    But MSNBC is the cable arm of NBC News, the dispassionate news division of NBC Universal. MSNBC, “Today” and “NBC Nightly News” share some staff members, workspace and content. And some critics are claiming they also share a political affiliation.

    The McCain campaign has filed letters of complaint to the news division about its coverage and openly tied MSNBC to it. Tension between the network and the campaign hit an apex the day Mr. McCain announced Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate. MSNBC had reported Friday morning that Ms. Palin’s plane was enroute to the announcement and she was likely the pick. But McCain campaign officials warned the network off, with one official going so far as to say that all of the candidates on the short list were on their way — which MSNBC then reported.

    “The fact that it was reported in real time was very embarrassing,” said a senior MSNBC official. “We were told, ‘No, it’s not Sarah Palin and you don’t know who it is.’ ”

    Tom Brokaw and Brian Williams, the past and present anchors of “NBC Nightly News,” have told friends and colleagues that they are finding it tougher and tougher to defend the cable arm of the news division, even while they anchored daytime hours of convention coverage on MSNBC and contributed commentary each evening.

    Mr. Williams did not respond to a request for comment and Mr. Brokaw declined to comment. At a panel discussion in Denver, Mr. Brokaw acknowledged that Mr. Olbermann and Mr. Matthews had “gone too far” at times, but emphasized they were “not the only voices” on MSNBC, according to The Washington Post.

    Al Hunt, the executive Washington bureau chief of Bloomberg News, said that the entire news division was being singled out by Republicans because of the work of partisans like Mr. Olbermann. “To go and tar the whole news network and Brokaw and Mitchell is grossly unfair,” he said, referring to the NBC correspondent Andrea Mitchell.

    Some tensions have spilled out on-screen. On the first night in Denver, as the fellow MSNBC host Joe Scarborough talked about the resurgence of the McCain campaign, Mr. Olbermann dismissed it by saying: “Jesus, Joe, why don’t you get a shovel?”

    The following night, Mr. Olbermann and his co-anchor for convention coverage, Mr. Matthews, had their own squabble after Mr. Olbermann observed that Mr. Matthews had talked too long.

    Some staff members said the tension led to the network’s decision to keep Mr. Olbermann in New York for the Republican convention, after he ran the desk in Denver during the Democratic convention. MSNBC said that he stayed in New York to anchor coverage of Hurricane Gustav. But some workers say there were other reasons — namely, that Mr. Olbermann was concerned about his safety in St. Paul, given the loud crowds at MSNBC’s set in Denver.

    NBC Universal executives are also known to be concerned about the perception that MSNBC’s partisan tilt in prime time is bleeding into the rest of the programming day. On a recent Friday afternoon, a graphic labeled “Breaking News” asked: “How many houses does Palin add to the Republican ticket?” Mr. Griffin called the graphic “an embarrassment.”

    According to three staff members, Jeff Zucker, chief executive of NBC Universal, and Steve Capus, president of NBC News, considered flying to the Republican convention in Minnesota last week to address the lingering tensions.

    Up to now, the company’s public support for MSNBC’s strategy has been enthusiastic. At an anniversary party for Mr. Olbermann in April, Mr. Zucker called “Countdown” “one of the signature brands of the entire company.”

    Just last year, Mr. Olbermann signed a four-year, $4-million-a-year contract with MSNBC. NBC is close to supplementing that contract with Mr. Olbermann, extending his deal through 2013 — and ensuring that he will be on MSNBC through the next election.

    Jim Rutenberg contributed reporting for this article.

    [/QUOTE]

    [url]http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/08/business/media/08msnbc.html?_r=2&hp=&oref=slogin&pagewanted=print&oref=slogin[/url]

    david gregory....wow- that's a big change...:rolleyes:

  2. #2
    [IMG]http://content2.myyearbook.com/zenhex/images/quiz47/234074/234074_res4_cryingMan.jpg[/IMG]

    [SIZE="4"]The media is so unfair!!!!![/SIZE]

  3. #3
    [QUOTE]
    In an interview on Sunday, Mr. Olbermann said that moment — and the perception that he is “not utterly neutral” — restarted months-old conversations about his role on political nights.

    “I found it ironic and instructive that I could have easily said exactly what I did say, exactly when I did say it, if I had been wearing a different hat, and nobody would have taken any issue,” he said.[/QUOTE]

    What is he, a moron? If the network tells him to behave a certain way when anchoring a certain event, then that's how it's gotta be. That seems to be the problem with Olbermann, the extreme arrogance.

    I hope that guy Griffin enjoyed it when Michael Moore and Olbermann yukked it up about the possible disastrous implications of Hurricane Gustav.

    You reap what you sew. The new lineup on MSNBC is Countdown followed by a show with host Rachel Maddow -- all bets are off the table, MSNBC's new goal is to out-fox Fox.

  4. #4
    [QUOTE=pauliec;2736024]What is he, a moron? If the network tells him to behave a certain way when anchoring a certain event, then that's how it's gotta be. That seems to be the problem with Olbermann, the extreme arrogance.

    I hope that guy Griffin enjoyed it when Michael Moore and Olbermann yukked it up about the possible disastrous implications of Hurricane Gustav.

    You reap what you sew. The new lineup on MSNBC is Countdown followed by a show with host Rachel Maddow -- all bets are off the table, MSNBC's new goal is to out-fox Fox.[/QUOTE]


    dude, arrogance isn't the exclusive property of Olbermann...they are all arrogant..how else do you explain the idea that, he, people should hear my opinion.

    Olbermann serves his purpose...even if he says things or have views people don't like or agree with...

    the best news about this means that maybe MSNBC will swing back towards the center....which conservatives still consider to far left by the way.

    I feel MSNBC has gone to far recently...man do they need Russert back.

  5. #5
    [QUOTE=piney;2736051]dude, arrogance isn't the exclusive property of Olbermann...they are all arrogant..how else do you explain the idea that, he, people should hear my opinion.

    Olbermann serves his purpose...even if he says things or have views people don't like or agree with...

    the best news about this means that maybe MSNBC will swing back towards the center....which conservatives still consider to far left by the way.

    I feel MSNBC has gone to far recently...man do they need Russert back.[/QUOTE]


    A lot of people can be arrogant and still listen to their bosses, and not be an enormous prick to work with. There's gotta be a reason why Olbermann is banned for life from the ESPN campus. I think it's pretty obvious with the way he would make those jabs at Matthews and Scarborough under his breath.

  6. #6
    [QUOTE=pauliec;2736058]A lot of people can be arrogant and still listen to their bosses, and not be an enormous prick to work with. There's gotta be a reason why Olbermann is banned for life from the ESPN campus. I think it's pretty obvious with the way he would make those jabs at Matthews and Scarborough under his breath.[/QUOTE]

    dude, not tv personalitites..from my experience watching them and seeing how they act on and off camera, they are all the same..they think they should be the boss..

    this isn't strictly an Olbermann issue, it is just his turn...

    plenty of guys in the past have done things they were told not to..their thought process is, "I am the reason why people watch this network and I will take these viewers with me if I leave."

    The talent always thinks they have the power.

    I freelanced in TV production for years before I started working for MTV and they were all the same, getting in producers faces, telling them they weren't going to do what they wanted them to do...they all think that the sun shines out of their behinds.

    Don't be fooled into thinking Olbermann is the worst.

  7. #7
    Example Larry Mendte and his girl.

  8. #8
    [QUOTE=piney;2736074]dude, not tv personalitites..from my experience watching them and seeing how they act on and off camera, they are all the same..they think they should be the boss..

    this isn't strictly an Olbermann issue, it is just his turn...

    plenty of guys in the past have done things they were told not to..their thought process is, "I am the reason why people watch this network and I will take these viewers with me if I leave."

    The talent always thinks they have the power.

    I freelanced in TV production for years before I started working for MTV and they were all the same, getting in producers faces, telling them they weren't going to do what they wanted them to do...they all think that the sun shines out of their behinds.

    Don't be fooled into thinking Olbermann is the worst.[/QUOTE]


    I'm not being fooled into thinking anything. I have eyes, I can see how he acts on TV. 10x worse than Matthews, easily.

  9. #9
    [QUOTE=pauliec;2736126]I'm not being fooled into thinking anything. I have eyes, I can see how he acts on TV. 10x worse than Matthews, easily.[/QUOTE]

    dude, tey are all arrogant SOB's....Olbermann isn't any worse than anyone else...

    they all think that we watch the news to watch them....

  10. #10
    [QUOTE=piney;2736143]dude, tey are all arrogant SOB's....Olbermann isn't any worse than anyone else...

    they all think that we watch the news to watch them....[/QUOTE]

    OK, dude. I got it.

  11. #11
    Veteran
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    1,710
    So they are just delegating him a smaller role; they aren't taking away his show or anything? They probably just want it to be more subtle so they can affect people without them noticing, instead of being blatantly obvious like Olbermann.

  12. #12
    I wonder if Brokaw had a hand in this.

  13. #13
    Board Moderator
    Jets Insider VIP
    JetsInsider.com Legend

    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    The depths of Despair.
    Posts
    40,287
    [QUOTE=SanAntonio_JetFan;2736456]I wonder if Brokaw had a hand in this.[/QUOTE]

    hmmmmmmm.:yes:

  14. #14
    [QUOTE=piney;2736143]....Olbermann isn't any worse than anyone else...[/QUOTE]

    Lol.

  15. #15
    Hall Of Fame
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Long Island & Section 337
    Posts
    4,859
    [QUOTE=SanAntonio_JetFan;2736456]I wonder if Brokaw had a hand in this.[/QUOTE]

    Funny, just two weeks ago KO was trying to ban Brokaw.

  16. #16
    Jets Insider VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Jets Stadium Section 246
    Posts
    36,861
    Even NBC could see it! Maybe there's hope for the media yet.

  17. #17
    Jets Insider VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Jets Stadium Section 246
    Posts
    36,861
    [QUOTE=piney;2736143]dude, tey are all arrogant SOB's....[B]Olbermann isn't any worse than anyone else...[/B]

    they all think that we watch the news to watch them....[/QUOTE]

    LOL.

    You obviously forgot the eye-rolling smiley. It's to the right, you just click on it with the mouse.

  18. #18
    [QUOTE=piney;2736143]....Olbermann isn't any worse than anyone else...
    [/QUOTE]
    Uh, what?

  19. #19
    I don't think we've heard the last of this story.

    Hell hath no fury like a liberal scorned.

  20. #20
    Jets Insider VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Jets Stadium Section 246
    Posts
    36,861
    [QUOTE=pauliec;2736126]I'm not being fooled into thinking anything. I have eyes, I can see how he acts on TV. 10x worse than Matthews, easily.[/QUOTE]

    Agreed.

    Matthews looks like Rush Limbaugh next to Olbermann.

    Ted Kennedy: "I like Keith Olbermann but he's a little too liberal for me." ;) :D

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Follow Us