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Posts Tagged ‘Ken Jautz’

Piers Morgan on Recurring Dreams, Celebrity Feuds, and that Pesky Phone Hacking Thing

There’s a lot to the 4,900-word New York Magazine piece about CNN’s Piers Morgan. There’s the Rupert Murdoch anxiety dreams:

In one, he and Murdoch are walking along the beach in Miami and an enormous wave engulfs them. Just then, Morgan would wake up in a cold sweat.

The phone-hacking scandal:

“I’m not going to respond to every single, individual story. I published about 100,000 stories in eleven years. If anybody has any evidence of illegality, present it.”

And the feuds:

With reality TV co-star Omarosa (“a pathetically untalented grotesque waste of space”) and the ex-Mrs. Paul McCartney, Heather Mills (“an indescribably vile creature with no redeeming features whatsoever”)

And then there’s the story about how the British tabloid newspaper editor got the 9pm timeslot on CNN:

In early 2010, [Morgan's agent turned manager John] Ferriter started peppering CNN/U.S.’s then-president Jon Klein with links to interviews Morgan had done on ITV1… At the time, Klein was more urgently preoccupied with figuring out what to do with his 8 p.m. slot, where Campbell Brown’s show was dying, and only while on vacation a couple of months later, during a two-hour car ride from Palm Springs to L.A., did he get around to watching Morgan on his iPad… At 10 a.m. on April 23, Morgan and Ferriter met with Klein, then–HLN head Ken Jautz, and two other CNN executives in Klein’s office at the Time Warner Center. It was more of a meet-and-greet than an interview for a particular job. “Piers walked in and blew us through the back of my office,” Klein says. “He owned that room from the moment he walked in. It was the single best interview I’d ever had with any talent.”

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Erin Burnett Gets OutFront on Wrong Foot

Erin Burnett flanked by her CNN bosses, EVP and managing editor Mark Whitaker, left, and EVP in charge of CNN Ken Jautz, right.

We’re thinking CNN’s Erin Burnett is eying a large Margarita when she gets of the air at 8pm tonight. Maybe during the show. Maybe right now.

Her premiere week — at least from where the critics stand — was not good. As for the ratings, more on that in a minute.

It was about :30 seconds, of a three minute story, in her (so far) four hours of programs on CNN. But if you printed out the criticism of Burnett’s coverage Monday from Occupy Wall Street, it could stretch from one end of Zuccotti Park to the other.

“Erin Burnett was way too dismissive and condescending of these protesters,” wrote Forbes’ Eric Jackson, who, 24 hours after posting his story, Tweeted that his take on Burnett was his 8th most popular story ever on

The pile-on was swift.

  • From the Baltimore Sun‘s David Zurawik: “Burnett’s problem runs much deeper from what I have seen — it runs straight through to the persona, if not the person herself.”
  • Variety‘s Brian Lowery writes: “Burnett does appear to have been a terrible choice for her new role, on a program oddly titled ‘Erin Burnett OutFront.’ Out front of what, exactly?”
  • Salon’s Glenn Greenwald called Burnett, a “spokesperson for Wall Street; it’s basically what her ‘journalistic’ career is.”

After all the criticism Atlantic Wire‘s Adam Clarke Estes got this statement from CNN: “We support Erin and the OutFront team and we respect that there will be a range of opinions on any given story.”

Burnett and crew couldn’t even catch a break on the title of segment they like to call “Seriously!” Watch this clip for more on that. MediaMatters thinks Burnett should apologize.

Don’t count on it. We hear the plan is full-steam ahead; taking pride in what else happened during her debut week: interviews with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner; talking politics with GOP presidential candidate Jon Huntsman and women’s health issues with model Christy Turlington.

As for those ratings…

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TV, Wall Street Bigwigs Fete Erin Burnett at CNN Launch Party

Mark Whitaker, Jim Walton, Anderson Cooper, Erin Burnett, Piers Morgan and Ken Jautz

Last night CNN feted its newest anchor, Erin Burnett, at Robert restaurant at The Museum of Arts and Design in Columbus Circle, just a few hundred feet from CNN’s NYC headquarters. Overlooking Columbus Circle and the southwest corner of Central Park, guests watched the city fade into night, while clips of Burnett preparing for her show played on a loop on TV sets spread throughout the space.

Just after 7:30 PM, CNN/U.S. executive VP Ken Jautz and CNN managing editor Mark Whitaker made some brief remarks. Jautz commented that Burnett is extremely passionate about news, and that anyone expecting a curt reply when asking her what she is working on is in for a long conversation.

Burnett then addressed the crowd and thanked them for their support. Her manager John Ferriter was in attendance, as was her fiancee David Rubulotta. Jautz and Whitaker got shout-outs, as did CNN Worldwide president Jim Walton and CNN ad sales chief Greg D’alba, both of whom were working the room.

The party also drew a packed room of boldface names:

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Ken Jautz on CNN’s New Lineup: ‘It’s a clear strategy. It’s not a holding pattern’

CNN/U.S. executive VP Ken Jautz talks to Ad Week about the new lineup, which sees Anderson Cooper move to 8 PM–and featuring a replay of Cooper’s show at 10 PM. As we noted when the changes were announced, the mover will mean that CNN is the only of the three general news channels to have a replay on at 10 PM. Jautz vigorously defends the move, citing Cooper’s success in the period, and adds that it is not a placeholder decision. CNN intends to keep the new schedule intact.

But your primetime slate features re-airs very prominently [for example, under the new lineup, Anderson Cooper 360 airs at 8 and again at 10]. Do you have plans to change that? It seems like an unusual primetime lineup.

I’m going to dispute the premise on several different fronts, actually. But before I do that, let me say that it is a lineup that we look forward to building. We’ll build it and attract a greater and greater following. That’s one.

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CNN/U.S. Chief Ken Jautz: Hacking Scandal Won’t Affect Piers Morgan’s CNN Show

CNN/U.S. executive VP Ken Jautz tells Ad Week‘s D.M. Levine that he is standing by his 9 PM host, Piers Morgan. Morgan’s name has been brought up in relation to the hacking scandal in the U.K., so far, however, no one has been able to definitively connect Morgan to the scandal.

Jautz says Morgan has been clear and forthcoming about his past with CNN executives, and in statements he has released since the scandal engulfed the media landscape in recent weeks.

Jautz also addresses Morgan’s consistent defense of the Murdoch family:

“These are his opinions based on his experiences with them. And he has his own opinions,” said Jautz, who added that he was comfortable with some on-air talent at CNN expressing opinion “so long as its based on their own experience, on their reporting, on fact and not on ideology.”

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Analysis: CNN Goes to Repeats at 10 p.m.

Ten p.m. Eastern Time is arguably the most competitive time period on cable news at the moment. Fox News Channel’s Greta Van Susteren is still the clear leader, but her ratings in June were down double digits in total viewers and the demo from the same period in 2010. On MSNBC, Ed Schultz is up compared to 2010, when repeats of “Countdown” ran on MSNBC, but has not broken out since replacing Lawrence O’Donnell earlier this year.

CNN’s Anderson Cooper was up in both total and demo viewers compared to its performance there last year.

With the new scheduling moves made by CNN, the channel is effectively ceding 10pmET to FNC and MSNBC by running a repeat of “AC360″ in the hour. When news breaks, it is a safe bet that Cooper will be covering it live at 10, but on more typical days, it looks as though CNN will be the only cable news channel on tape at 10 PM. Even CNN sister network HLN has original programming in the hour with Joy Behar.

Update: A CNN spokesperson says “CNN is always prepared to go live as news warrants. The 10 pm show will be updated or air live as necessary.”

CNN certainly has good reasons for putting “AC360″ at 8 PM, as CNN/U.S. executive VP Ken Jautz noted in an interview with B&C:

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Media Meshes at Mirror Awards Ceremony

Photo Courtesy: Newhouse School

Yesterday the Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University held its fifth annual Mirror Awards ceremony, honoring the best in media reporting. You can read about the winners from FishbowlNY, here.

MSNBC hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski hosted the event, which also presented special awards to Foursquare co-founder Dennis Crowley and Comcast CEO Brian Roberts.

Scarborough opened up the event with a friendly jab at his former executive producer, Chris Licht, who was in the audience.

“Our connection to the Newhouse school is through our executive producer Chris Licht. We have found working with him through the years that not only do you teach your students how to get out there in the media world and do it better than anyone else, but we have to say the trait that you instill that really means more than any other is loyalty. Sticking together through the years no matter what. How is CBS Chris?”

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes was to present the award to Roberts. The Comcast CEO was unable to attend as he was in Switzerland securing the rights to the 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2020 Olympics for NBC. Bewkes took the opportunity to poke fun at his business partner… and now competitor:

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Sam Feist Named CNN Washington Bureau Chief

CNN’s EVP Ken Jautz has named Sam Feist as the new bureau chief in Washington, DC, effective immediately.

In a note to the staff, obtained by TVNewser, Jautz writes, “Sam has a unique combination of skills that will allow him to not only lead the bureau, but to strengthen it and build on the successes of the last election.”

Feist joined CNN in 1990 as a freelance producer in the London bureau, he joined full-time a year later at CNN’s Atlanta HQ. In 1992, he moved to the Washington bureau where he has been an assignment editor, producer, senior producer, and, for the last 5 years, political director.

“Sam is deeply committed to maintaining the highest standards of journalism and ensuring the credibility of the CNN brand,” writes Jautz. “Moreover, he bring tireless enthusiasm and unrivaled passion for politics to this position.”

“I couldn’t be more excited to take on this new role and build on the great journalism and the tremendous expertise of the CNN Washington bureau,” said Feist in a news release, which is after the jump.

Feist replaces David Bohrman who began his new job as CNN’s chief innovation officer earlier this month.

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After ‘Self-Analysis,’ CNN Pitches Advertisers On Its New Strategy For Retaining Viewers

In a wide-ranging item in today’s issue of Broadcasting & Cable (subscription required), Jon Lafayette writes about CNN’s pitch to the advertising community in the wake of a first quarter filled to the brim with breaking news.

In its presentations to media buyers, CNN stresses that while “the world has gotten more interesting,” the network itself has made changes to retain viewers when times are tranquil. As part of its comeback, CNN is also offering to provide significant advertisers additional data about their return on investment (ROI).

The additional data is courtesy of an “ROI Toolkit” which tracks audience information and interaction cross multiple platforms.

The other major part of the story is CNN’s strategy for keeping viewers engaged–and advertisers paying–even when breaking news dies down:

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Ken Jautz: CNN Will ‘Talk about different subject matters and approach it differently’

CNN/U.S. executive VP Ken Jautz speaks to the AP’s David Bauder about his strategy for improving the cable news channel.

The short version: de-emphasizing politics (at least in 2011), more variety in the stories covered, and a tone that flows from show to show.

“It’s important to stand out by being different,” said Jautz, a longtime CNN executive who replaced Jon Klein last fall at the helm of the domestic network. “If much of the cable space is politically oriented and partisan politically oriented, the way to be different is … to talk about different subject matters and approach it differently.”

CNN’s hope is to create a contrast and make it appear that rivals Fox and MSNBC are one-dimensional with a focus on political arguments.

In other words: let the other guys debate politics, let us counter-program with something different.

Elsewhere, The NY TimesBill Carter gets MSNBC president Phil Griffin to acknowledge that when breaking news happens, people want to watch CNN:

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