We interrupt this blog interruption to note that Page Six is saying things are not at all well in CNN’s executive ranks…
Abysmal ratings at CNN have insiders pointing fingers over who’s to blame, and sources say a big problem is friction between managing editor of CNN Worldwide Mark Whitaker and CNN President-US Ken Jautz.
Ratings at the cable channel fell to a 21-year low last week, with viewership particularly disappointing at Soledad O’Brien’s morning show and Piers Morgan’s nighttime talker.
Sources were quick to cite “misaligned management” within the top ranks as a major reason for the dysfunction. Jautz, who previously ran HLN, replaced former CNN US head Jon Klein two years ago — but some of Klein’s duties were given to Whitaker.
“When Jon was there, the structure was more linear,” said an insider, adding that Jautz and Whitaker, “have competing ideas for what we should do.”
The insider further told us: “Ken is not an editorial guy. He really is an operations guy. Mark’s strong suit is editorial, but he doesn’t know as much about television.”
Sources pointed to O’Brien’s show, which Whitaker oversees, as an example of competing, confusing philosophies. One insider said: “Ken does not like all of the ‘conversation on camera’ on the morning show. Mark does, because his vision is to make it that go-to conversation piece that ‘Morning Joe’ has become. It’s a constant battle.”