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Posts Tagged ‘Al Franken’

All the Media News, That’s Fit To Air


While the three evening newscasts and the network morning shows often look the same — with the same lineup of stories, often airing at the same time — the two media criticism shows, provide two distinct options for news junkies: those who are partial to Fox News and those who tune in to CNN.

Both shows, CNN’s “Reliable Sources with Brian Stelter” and FNC’s “MediaBuzz with Howard Kurtz,” air at the same time, 11amET Sundays. (“MediaBuzz” also gets a re-air at 5pmET)

Yesterday, “Reliable Sources” led with the Stephen Colbert taking over CBS’s “Late Show.” “MediaBuzz” led with how the media covered the departure of HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Kurtz got to Colbert :47 minutes into his show. “Reliable Sources” didn’t cover Sebelius at all.

On CNN, Stelter had a 10-minute segment, which included an interview with Sen. Al Franken, on the proposed Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger. Kurtz didn’t cover last week’s merger news, but had two segments with former CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson, who was also on Bill O’Reilly‘s show earlier in the week.

Stelter reported last week’s news of a new ABC News president, Kurtz did not. Kurtz discussed the coverage of Jeb Bush last week, Stelter did not. Both shows gladly covered competitor MSNBC, and the reports that host Al Sharpton was once an FBI informant.

While no one will ever confuse CNN and Fox News, the two programs that cover the media are leading the way in differentiation.

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Franken Says Merged Comcast, Time Warner Cable ‘Will Be Bad for Consumers’

Having done two stints as a writer and performer on “Saturday Night Live,” Sen. Al Franken knows a thing or two about NBC. This morning on CBS, the Minnesota democrat said NBC parent company Comcast’s acquisition of Time Warner Cable “will be bad for consumers of TV, of cable TV and of the Internet.

“I think consumers will end up paying more, there will be less competition, there will be less innovation and worse, even worse service,” Fraken said on “CBS This Morning.”

As chairman of the Privacy, Technology, and Law Subcommittee, Franken also discussed Steve Kroft‘s report on personal data being harvested by marketing companies.

“You saw it last night on ’60 Minutes,’” said Franken. “I really believe that Americans have a right to privacy, that they have a right to know what’s being taken, what of their private information’s being taken, and to give permission if you’re going to take their private information.”


Geraldo Rivera ‘Truly Contemplating’ Run For U.S. Senate

Fox News anchor Geraldo Rivera says that he is “truly contemplating” running for a U.S. Senate seat in his native New Jersey. The Hill caught the comments made by Rivera on his daily syndicated radio program.

“I mention this only briefly, fasten your seatbelt,” Rivera said. “I am and I’ve been in touch with some people in the Republican Party in New Jersey. I am truly contemplating running for Senate against Frank Lautenberg or Cory Booker in New Jersey.”

He did note that he has contractual obligations to FNC and his radio syndicator, but that a run was worth looking into:

“I’m not going to drill this out, because obviously I’ve got commitments to Fox and to here at the radio program and I’m really having a great time,” he said. “But I figure at my age, if I’m going to do it I’ve got to do it.

Rivera anchors a weekend program on Fox News, and is also a correspondent for the network. He joined the channel in 2001.

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Geraldo Rivera’s Al Gore Story

On “The O’Reilly Factor” last night, Geraldo Rivera spoke to Bill O’Reilly about the sale of Current TV to Al Jazeera, and shared a story about running into Al Gore.

The year was 2006, and Gore and comedian Al Franken (who is new Senator Franken) were in the lobby of the News Corp, building in New York. Rivera knew Gore, and had interviewed him in his prior jobs.

“I run into the vice president with Al Franken by his side, and he looks me up and down and said, ‘look where you ended up.’ As if to say to me, my goodness how could you possibly sell out to go work here for Fox News,” Rivera recalled. “And I said I am still the same guy, and the Vice President says to me in a very tsk tsk condescending way, ‘I guess you will never bite the hands that feeds you.’”


Former NBC Employee Turned Senator ‘Very Concerned’ About Comcast/NBCU Deal

Zucker_2.5.jpgMinnesota Sen. Al Franken is getting the most ink this morning for his role at yesterday’s Senate Subcommittee hearing into the prposed Comcast/NBCU merger.

NBCU president Jeff Zucker and Comcast CEO Brian Roberts testified before two congressional hearings yesterday.

B&C’s John Eggerton, who live Tweeted the hearings, has a couple write-ups, including the Franken angle.

Franken, who worked with NBCU President Jeff Zucker‘s wife, Karen, at Saturday Night Live, got the pleasantries out of the way quickly, saying how much he owed NBC and how super Zucker’s wife was to work with, before taking off the gloves taking aim at the deal.

In The Washington Post, Lisa de Moraes writes:

NBC’s worst nightmare came true Thursday — the other, non-Conan nightmare — when a former NBC on-air talent/producer turned senator went off on network and Comcast suits during a Senate hearing about the proposed merger of the two media behemoths.

“I worked for NBC for many years. And what I know from my previous career has given me reason to be concerned — let me rephrase that, very concerned — about the potential merger of Comcast and NBC Universal,” said Sen. Al Franken (D-MN).

NYTimes’ Brian Stelter picks up on the comments from Zucker related to maintaining broadcasting as we know it:

Comcast has made several public interest commitments and has said that the NBC broadcast network would remain free to over-the-air viewers. Jeffrey Zucker, the chief executive of NBC Universal, said Comcast’s commitments “give me greater comfort in thinking about the future of broadcasting.”