Archive for December 20, 2012

Ben Sherwood Shoots ABC News in the Foot in Slow Motion.

Posted in CNN on December 20, 2012 by icn2

Ben Sherwood has just made the biggest mistake he’ll ever make as President of ABC News; he let Jake Tapper go to CNN. Losing Tapper doesn’t immediately hurt ABC as much as it does in the long term and Sherwood’s short term calculation will come back hard to hit ABC eventually.

Politico’s Dylan Byers sums up the Tapper/This Week fiasco nicely with some anonymous quoting

“Jake had his eye on the chair, and he got tired of waiting,” a source familiar with the situation told POLITICO. “I think it became clear to him he wasn’t going to get it.”

The conventional wisdom is Tapper would have never considered CNN as an option had he been given This Week. But after getting passed over twice; first by the square peg/round hole Christianne Amanpour hiring and then again when George Stephanopolous replaced Amanpour and wouldn’t be dislodged, the writing was on the wall for Tapper. For whatever inexcusable miscalculation, Sherwood and ABC couldn’t see him in the chair full time.

It will very likely prove to be an irreplaceable loss. With Tapper, ABC had a talent with the take no prisoners tenacity of Sam Donaldson melded with the Washington D.C. street smarts of Tim Russert. You can’t put a price tag on those kind of traits. They are just too rare to value. With Tapper at This Week, ABC wouldn’t be faced with what NBC was faced with when it named the still not well accepted by everyone for Sundays David Gregory to take over Meet The Press. Gregory has had to grow into his role and build the gravitas he did not come into the job with. It’s still a work in progress. Tapper, like Russert, would have been a natural with gravitas galore. You can bet your ass there are a few Champagne corks popping over at 30 Rock…

And yet Sherwood couldn’t see it. Faced with choosing between lesser known but with a ton of upside Tapper and the well known, well liked, and rock steady but peaked Stephanopolous, Sherwood made the short term safe choice.

ABC will pay for Sherwood’s poorly thought out decision. Not now. But, in a few years when Diane Sawyer steps down from World News and Stepanopolous succeeds her, as everyone in the industry expects him to, ABC will be faced with a power and credibility vacuum at This Week it now has no one capable of filling.


CNBC 2013 Primetime Changes

Posted in CNBC on December 20, 2012 by icn2

CNBC announced a bunch of new programs for 2013 primetime…


Premiere Dates Set For New Series:

“Treasure Detectives” on Tuesday, March 5th at 9PM ET And “The Car Chasers” on Tuesday, March 5th at 10PM ET

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., December 20, 2012— CNBC today unveiled the network’s new primetime programming lineup that will air during CNBC Prime. CNBC has greenlit two series: TREASURE DETECTIVES from Endemol USA and THE CAR CHASERS from ITV Studios America in association with Leepson Bounds Entertainment. CNBC Prime’s new series will premiere on Tuesday, March 5th. “Treasure Detectives” and “The Car Chasers” mark the first reality series to be added to CNBC’s new primetime since the network announced it would be exploring new reality formats in primetime. Additionally, CNBC added four new unscripted projects to its development slate, including THE NEXT BIG BIG THING (working title) featuring music impresario Charlie Walk; MONEY TALK$ (working title), a look into the gritty world of sports gambling; LIQUIDATE YOUR LIFE (working title) a chance to start all over; and THE BIG FIX (working title) featuring America’s turnaround king. The announcement was made today by Mark Hoffman, CNBC President and CEO, and Jim Ackerman, CNBC’s SVP of Primetime Alternative Programming.

“The conflict between fear and greed and buy and sell plays out on our air everyday so there is great opportunity to extend those themes into primetime,” said Hoffman. “Reality is ever-expanding and with our unique content focused on money, CNBC is well-positioned to influence the genre.”
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CNN Lands Jake Tapper

Posted in CNN on December 20, 2012 by icn2

CNN announced that it has hired Jake Tapper. Easily the best pickup by CNN in 10 years…


Tapper to Anchor New Weekday Program Beginning in 2013

Accomplished Washington journalist Jake Tapper, who has served the last four years as ABC’s senior White House correspondent and is a best-selling author, joins CNN as anchor of a new weekday program and CNN’s chief Washington correspondent, it was announced today by Ken Jautz, executive vice president of CNN/U.S.

Tapper has been a widely-respected reporter in the nation’s capital for 14 years and his most recent book, The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor, is currently on The New York Times best seller list. In his new role at CNN, he will be a key Washington, D.C. anchor and correspondent for CNN.

“We are thrilled to have Jake join CNN and take the helm of a brand new weekday program,” said Jautz. “Jake is an exceptional reporter and communicator, and we look forward to developing a program that takes advantage of all of his strengths, his passion and his knowledge of national issues and events.”

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More FNC Gun Control Controversy?

Posted in FNC on December 20, 2012 by icn2

Once in a week wasn’t enough apparently. New York Magazine’s Gabriel Sherman is back with another FNC gun control story only this time from the other side of the spectrum…

Since the Newtown massacre, Lott, one of the country’s most vocal Second Amendment absolutists, has been donating his time to CNN while Fox News, the network that pays him and employs his son as a producer, has held him at bay. Lott told me that he submitted a column for Fox’s website on Monday about assault weapons but was informed yesterday afternoon by a Fox News staffer that the article would not run. “They didn’t send me an e-mail. I got a call,” he explained. “They said, ‘This is just too sensitive.'”

In the unpublished column, Lott described the differences between the Bushmaster rifle used by Adam Lanza and weapons actually used by the military. “No self-respecting military in the world would use the civilian version of these guns,” he wrote. Lott argued that lawmakers were using the Newtown tragedy to scare citizens. “Some politicians want to truly frighten the public by painting a false image of machine guns on America’s streets to push regulations on semi-automatic guns,” he wrote. “Despite the rhetoric used by many such as President Obama, not a single multiple victim public shooting has involved a machine gun.” Lott concluded his column writing that new gun laws will make Americans less safe. “The Bushmaster, like any gun, is indeed very dangerous, but it is not a military weapon,” he wrote. “If you want to ban semi-automatic guns, ban all of them, not just guns based on how they look. Yet, despite the immediate emotional appeal, banning semi-automatic guns will jeopardize safety.” A Fox News spokesperson told me in an e-mail that Lott’s column was rejected because it was “too technical for that period of time.” He added that “Lott accepted the reason and moved on. As an aside, we have published ten of his columns since September.”

Too technical for that period of time? Since when is FNC concerned with technicality by a contributor penning an Op-ed? And what about this discrepancy in reasons for the spiking between Lott and FNC? ‘Too technical for that period of time’ hardly equates to “They said, ‘This is just too sensitive.'”


Joe Muto Interview

Posted in FNC on December 20, 2012 by icn2

Jim Romenesko inerviews Fox Mole and potential Darwin Award nominee Joe Muto…

You mentioned in an earlier email that “I really hate reading those [comments on the TV Newser post], especially now that I’ve got some perspective on the whole thing and realize what an ass I made of myself.” How do you now view the “Fox Mole” episode?

Well, I get into that kind of stuff a lot in the book, so I think the nice people at Dutton would appreciate me not spoiling it just yet. But let’s just say that when I answered my apartment door at 6:30am to find a detective from the New York District Attorney’s office armed with a search warrant, one of the first thoughts that crossed my head was “Hmm, there are probably one or two things I could have done differently here.”

Ya think?

Free for All: 12/20/12

Posted in Free For All on December 20, 2012 by icn2

What’s on your mind?

Tweet of the Day…

Posted in CNN, FNC on December 20, 2012 by icn2

CNN’s Carol Costello

FOX is interviewing Santa. Santa told the “Friends” ‘people used to call me Santa,’ but since this war on Christmas started… Seriously?