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Posts Tagged ‘Jim Walton’

Jeff Zucker to Become President of CNN

Jeff Zucker is getting another shot at running a network. Zucker, the former CEO of NBC Universal, is going to be named the new president of CNN soon, according to TVNewser. At CNN, Zucker will succeed Jim Walton, who announced he was leaving the company earlier this year.

According to the New York Times, Zucker has been the lead candidate throughout the four month search for Walton’s successor. If given the job, Zucker would be tasked with turning around a much-maligned network. Though CNN continually rakes in lots of cash, the brand itself is ridiculed as directionless at best and amateurish at worst.

Jeff Bewkes, CEO of Time Warner and the man who will eventually name the new head of CNN, is speaking today at a conference. TVNewser will be there, so be sure to check them out for updates later today.

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CNN Worldwide Head Jim Walton to Leave Cable Network

CNN Worldwide president Jim Walton is stepping down from the cable network at the end of the year.

Our sister site TVNewser reports Walton told the staff in a note this morning that CNN needs some “fresh thinking.”

Turner Broadcasting chairman Phil Kent is in charge finding Walton’s successor.

TVNewser has more details, including reaction from Kent.

CNN Hopes to Launch ‘CNN Wire’ to Compete With AP

cnn-logo.jpgThe AP is under siege! Since announcing a rate structure change effective 2009 a stream of newspapers including the Tribune Co. have filed intent-to-cancel notices, Politco has recently begun outsourcing its coverage to newspapers nationwide and now CNN is pitching a cheaper wire service to newspapers called CNN Wire.

It’s a somewhat puzzling decision on the part of the cable giant to invest in print when the industry is in a freefall: why not put that money into further online innovation? (On a side note: numerous people on our Twitter feed noted they were watching Mumbai coverage via a livestream on CNN.com). However, according to the New York Times CNN “already runs an internal wire service for its bureaus and CNN.com, and [Jim Walton, president of CNN Worldwide} says that taking it outside is a logical step.” A trial version of the service has apparently been on display in a number of newspapers but they are aiming to spread their wings with a “get to know you” “CNN Newspaper Summit,” this week in Atlanta.

Lunch at Michael’s: Peggy Siegal: ‘I Want It Now’

lunch_at_michaels_logo.jpgPerhaps it was the schizophrenic weather that kept most of the familiar faces and celebrity diners away. It was a pretty subdued crowd at 55th & Fifth today. No big stars of stage, screen and nary an editor in sight. (Okay, Kathie Lee Gifford was there.) Since there wasn’t much star gazing to do, lunchtime chronicler Diane Clehane was left with plenty of time to chat with some regulars and learned this fun fact from a longtime staffer who managed to satisfy our celeb craving for the day: Did you know that actress Gretchen Mol (last seen in The Notorious Bettie Page) once worked as the coat check girl? Legend has it that CAA’s George Lane (who was dining today with Jean Doumanian) discovered the one time Vanity Fair cover girl on one of his visits to the restaurant. It got us thinking — perhaps our salad nicoise was served up today by a future Oscar winner. Food for thought …

The rundown:

1. The early shift: Hallmark TV president Henry Schleiff and CNN honcho Jim Walton (who picked up the check). Round two: Peggy Siegal who did her usual round of glad-handing before settling in with two colleagues — but not before telling the staff: “We have to order now!” The hyper-busy trio spent much of the meal on their phones talking to other folks. Oh, the pressure!

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Koinange Fired For Paying Rebels? Or Personal Use Of CNN Email?

koinage_060407.jpgTVNewser confirmed the dismissal of CNN Africa correspondent Jeff Koinange last week. CNN has been mum on the subject, but the undulating controversy gives us a little window into CNN corporate policy. According to Marianne Briner, the woman reportedly involved with Koinange:

“I have been told by a close friend of [Anderson] Cooper that CNN is monitoring all correspondence of their personalities and when they went into his email-exchange to arrange for the meeting with these Nigerian rebels, they also came across his correspondence with me (more than 1.000 emails cannot be overseen). CNN does not allow private correspondence via their [official] computers and all emails Jeff had sent to me and I to him went via jeff.koinange@turner.com — the official channel of CNN. Jeff should have known that this could one day create a problem. But obviously he did not regard this [as] serious.”

Koinange, for his part, did seem aware, writing to Briner, “… I have been ‘reprimanded’ by CNN from emailing anything other than the ‘basics’ ….. it’s causing them great concern…..”

Oh, and then there’s the whole “Did he or didn’t he pay the Nigerian rebels who helped him get a story?” issue. On the February 18 broadcast, during which Koinange reported the story about 24 Filipino sailors held hostage, he said:

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