Drip, Drip, Drip

‘Happy shops don’t leak. Unhappy shops leak’ A former high ranking cable news executive once told me that. I thought about that as I was reading the latest unauthorized news coming out of CNN via FishbowlDC.

Another network insider with a vantage point to this morning’s meeting said it was hilarious to watch Jautz and Feder address the “Starting Point” staff, considering they were two of the main culprits who contributed to the potential demise and dismantling of the show.

From day one, “Starting Point” was in disarray, according to multiple sources aware of the drama going on behind the scenes of the show. It wasn’t supposed to debut in January, 2012, but the decision was made to rush it on the air to coincide with the Iowa caucus. From its launch the show was never fully staffed; all the promises of branding and promotion never materialized; and the constant executive in-fighting over what to do with the show angered its host and staff.

Former CNN Managing Editor Mark Whitaker, who announced his resignation Tuesday, loved the panel format because he desired the show to have the same buzz as MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” But Jautz hated the panel, resulting in it being downsized from 7-9 a.m. to 7:30 to 9 a.m. And when Soledad was off, the panel was only on from 8-9 a.m.

Jautz also detested a single-anchor format. He preferred a two-anchor format, even going as far as focus-group testing Brooke Baldwin and John Berman when O’Brien was away.

So as Whitaker and Jautz waged a constant battle over who would control the destiny of CNN – a scenario set up by then-CNN President Jim Walton when he divided up the duties of Jon Klein when he was canned – “Early Start” and “Starting Point” were ground zero for their battle.

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4 Responses to “Drip, Drip, Drip”

  1. Jautz is just as bad as Whitaker for even thinking Brooke Baldwin and her miniscule of talent is qualified to be on air. He should pack his bags and Whitaker’s pal Amy Entelis needs to go too.

  2. Why is this not surprising: because you can see the mismanagement on air. How the F*** does Feder, and Jautz keep their jobs?!! I mean honestly, any PA & AP with two years experience in any given market can make decisions better than these guys. It’s really not rocket science.

  3. Starting Point feels and looks like a show that was slapped together. It’s not doing well because Jautz and Whitaker and anyone else involved did plan out anything

  4. Hey you swingin’ CNN batch-a-suits! Are you bothered by that nagging “drip, drip, drip” of… gonna rea – lease inside shop dirt? Call now and get a bottle of Squealer Rooter.

    Squealer Rooter, that’s the name, so you can fire your troublemakers before they can blame. (Useonlyasdirected.MaycauseblurredvisionamongcontrolroomstaffandAndersonCooper.)

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