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Posts Tagged ‘Martin Bashir’

July 2014 Ratings: MSNBC Has Lowest Primetime Demo in Eight Years

MSNBC placed third in viewers and fourth in A25-54 demo viewers in total day this month. In primetime, the network finished second in viewers and third in the demo; the latter was the network’s lowest in eight years–since July 2006.

The ratings for July 2014 (Nielsen Live + Same Day data):

  • Primetime (Mon-Sun): 550,000 Total Viewers / 152,000 A25-54
  • Total Day (Mon-Sun): 318,000 Total Viewers / 92,000 A25-54

Compared to the same month last year, MSNBC was down -16% in total viewers and -33% in A25-54 viewers in total day. In primetime, the network was down -6% and -25%, respectively.

MSNBC’s daytime programming struggled in July. Marking six months at 4pmET, “Now with Alex Wagner” is down -28% in total viewers and -57% in the demo compared to last year when Martin Bashir hosted the hour; the demo is the lowest at 4pmET since 2005. “The Daily Rundown with Chuck Todd” is down -21% in viewers and -47% in the demo; the latter is the lowest since 2004.

In primetime, all three MSNBC’s shows were up in total viewers but down double digits in the demo. “All In with Chris Hayes” was up +6% in total viewers and down -20% in the demo, “The Rachel Maddow Show” was up +2% in total viewers and down -20% in the demo, and “The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell” was up +8% and down -17%, respectively.

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Lauren Skowronski Leaving MSNBC

Lauren Skowronski headshotMSNBC’s VP of Media Relations Lauren Skowronski is leaving the network to become VP of Corporate Communications at NBC Universal.

In a press release issued by NBCUniversal today, the network announced Skowronski’s promotion. She’ll report to SVP for corporate communications, Cameron Blanchard, and oversee media and communications for NBCUniversal’s Strategy and Business Insights. She starts August 11.

Skowronski served as MSNBC’s VP of media relations since 2012, when she was promoted after serving as director of media relations for MSNBC. Over the last year, she’s had rapid-response duties dealing with multiple controversies surrounding now-former MSNBC hosts Martin Bashir and Alec Baldwin.

No word yet on Skowronski’s replacement at MSNBC.

Politico’s Dylan Byers first reported the move earlier this week.

Juju Chang Named Anchor of ‘Nightline’

abc_juju_chang_090116_mainAs Cynthia McFadden packs for NBC, ABC is wasting no time in announcing her replacement at “Nightline.” ABC lifer Juju Chang has been named co-anchor of the ABC News broadcast effective immediately.

“Juju is the perfect example of someone whose dedication and tenacity to innovative reporting have paved the way for her success,” ABC/Disney co-president Ben Sherwood writes in a note to staff.

Chang, who has been with ABC News her entire career, starting as a desk assistant, is married to former NBC News boss Neal Shapiro, now president of WNET.

McFadden was one of the original anchors when “Nightline” went to a 3-anchor format in 2005, along with Martin Bashir and Terry Moran. Bashir left for MSNBC in 2010, replaced by Bill Weir. Last year, Dan Abrams replaced Moran who is now a foreign correspondent for ABC News. And when Weir left for CNN in October, Dan Harris took his spot.

In his note, Sherwood thanked McFadden for her 20 years of service. “Cynthia has been an amazing colleague, a loyal mentor to so many of our up and coming producers and I am personally grateful for her profound contributions to ABC News. It is with great fondness that I wish Cynthia the very best in her new adventure.”

Sherwood’s note after the jump…

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MSNBC Fires Author of ‘Unacceptable’ Tweet, Phil Griffin Apologizes to RNC Chair

MSNBCLogo304x200Responding to RNC Chair Reince Priebus‘ demand for an apology over an offensive tweet suggesting conservatives are against interracial marriage, MSNBC has fired the author of the tweet, and network President Phil Griffin has apologized to Preibus.

Here’s the statement from Griffin:

The tweet last night was outrageous and unacceptable. We immediately acknowledged that it was offensive and wrong, apologized, and deleted it. We have dismissed the person responsible for the tweet.
I personally apologize to Mr. Priebus and to everyone offended. At msnbc we believe in passionate, strong debate about the issues and we invite voices from all sides to participate. That will never change.

Griffin’s apology comes after Priebus banned all RNC officials from appearing on MSNBC.

MSNBC’s swift action in response to this online comment comes after a string of controversial on-air comments in the last months of 2013: Melissa Harris-Perry‘s panel mocking Mitt Romney’s African-American grandchild, Martin Bashir‘s resignation after making vile comments about Sarah Palin, and Alec Baldwin and MSNBC parting ways after the actor hurled anti-gay slurs toward a photographer.

>Update: Priebus will appear on “Hannity” tonight to talk about the incident.

MSNBC Changes ‘Will Strengthen the Flow of our Programming,’ Says Griffin

msnbclogo_304x200News in the morning. Opinion in the afternoon. That sums up the changes coming to MSNBC’s daytime schedule.

The network’s progressive turn, which is a proven success in the evenings, will now begin much earlier, at 1pmET as diplomat and writer Ronan Farrow joins the schedule. Joy Reid, who often filled in for Martin Bashir, follows at 2pm. “The Cycle,” a politics and pop culture chat show remains at 3, and Alex Wager‘s “Now” stays at 4pm.

“I’m confident the changes and additions to our lineup will strengthen the flow of our programming, ” MSNBC president Phil Griffin writes in a note to staff, obtained by TVNewser.

The afternoon additions will also create flow in the mornings where “Morning Joe” leads into Chuck Todd‘s DC-based politics hour, following by Chris Jansing‘s newscast. Tamron Hall‘s “NewsNation” follows at 11am with Andrea Mitchell moving back an hour to Noon. “Andrea Mitchell is so critical to msnbc and I’ve always thought her show should be at noon,” Griffin says. “Andrea brings on the biggest newsmakers of the day and the new time slot will help showcase her work.”

As previously reported, former CBS, ABC, and CNN executive producer Kathy O’Hearn will oversee Farrow’s show. MSNBC original Omnika Thompson will be joining as senior producer. Thompson had overseen Thomas Roberts‘ show before he moved to the mornings.

Griffin’s note to the staff after the jump…

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Phil Griffin: Recent Controversial Comments Don’t Define MSNBC

phil-griffin-msnbcSpeaking to The Hollywood Reporter, MSNBC President Phil Griffin said he won’t allow his network to be defined by a recent collection of controversial comments.

“These were judgment calls made by some of our people,” Griffin tells THR. “We quickly took responsibility for them and took action. They were unfortunate, but I’m not going to allow these specific moments of lack of judgment to define us.”

“We handled them,” says Griffin. “We were transparent. That is our philosophy: Be factual, and step up when you make a mistake. And I don’t see that among our competition, whether it’s getting something wrong on a major story or when there are clear inaccuracies and they’re not corrected.”

Griffin also suggests the comments that caused the departures of Martin Bashir and Alec Baldwin (and caused a flurry of negative reaction for current host Melissa Harris-Perry) are not representative of a larger problem. Read more

How Far is Too Far for MSNBC Hosts?

msnbchosts
Jon Friedman, writing for the New York Post, thinks MSNBC is in “a mighty mess” following a lackluster 2013 in the ratings department and the messy departure of two high-profile hosts — Martin Bashir and Alec Baldwin — and the apology of another, Melissa Harris-Perry, following controversial comments she made about Mitt Romney‘s family.

“We took the appropriate actions,” MSNBC president Phil Griffin tells Friedman. But a crisis-management expert says MSNBC and its parent company might have to rein in outspoken hosts to avoid having additional embarrassing situations.

“Comcast needs to show that everyone at MSNBC, from the president on down, must be held accountable from now on and that this [behavior] cannot continue to happen,” said Mike Paul, a 25-year public-relations strategist known as “The Reputation Doctor.”

“We live in a society where sensationalism is often rewarded. That has to be factored in when we consider why people are constantly crossing the line.”

As MSNBC increases its opinion programming to most hours of the day, the network is putting in guidelines to prevent a repeat of some of the missteps of 2013.

Rotating Cast to Host MSNBC’s Noon Hour

ari melberAri Melber, of MSNBC’s “The Cycle,” will be among a rotating cast of hosts for the network’s Noon hour, when Alex Wagner moves to 4pmET.

Joy Reid, who had been filling in at 4pm since the departure of Martin Bashir last month, is also expected to fill in at NoonET. MSNBC hasn’t made any final decisions, so the fill-in situation is still very fluid.

The network also has a vacancy at 11am as Thomas Roberts moves to the early morning hours starting Monday.

MSNBC has tried out hosts temporarily before permanently giving them a show in the past, including Rev. Al Sharpton who filled in at 6pm for most of the summer in 2011 before being named permanent host.

No word yet on the plan for 11am or when and where Ronan Farrow will land on the MSNBC schedule.

>Update: An MSNBC spokesperson denies Ari Melber and Joy Reid will be part of the host rotation.

MSNBC Disputes Report Rachel Maddow Influences Management, Personnel Decisions

msnbclogo_304x200MSNBC is disputing a National Review Online report that suggests Rachel Maddow holds significant power in both network editorial vision and personnel decisions.

“This is categorically false,” Rachel Maddow said. “I have never had any role in any management decision at MSNBC.  Any source who says otherwise is wrong.”

An MSNBC spokesperson tells TVNewser Maddow’s show keeps her busy.

“Rachel has absolutely no role in network management decisions. Writing her show every night is more than enough work. She gladly leaves talent management to her bosses.”

NRO also reports former “Ed Show” and “Countdown” EP Rich Stockwell has been tasked with reviewing scripts before they go on-air following the recent string of crude comments. Read more

Howard Kurtz Asks If MSNBC Developing ‘Culture’ of ‘Harsh Personal Attacks’

KurtzFoxnewsIn a column for Foxnews.com, “MediaBuzz” host Howard Kurtz delves into MSNBC’s recent string of “rude and crude”comments made by Melissa Harris-Perry and former hosts Martin Bashir and Alec Baldwin.

Prefacing his column as not just a Fox attack on MSNBC—citing friendly relations with several at the network—Kurtz asks if the network has developed a culture where “harsh personal attacks” are encouraged.

If there is a theme to these episodes, it is a view of Republicans and conservatives as so mean-spirited, hard-hearted and clueless that just about any rhetoric against them can be justified.

What was striking to me was that MSNBC did nothing but issue a tepid statement until Bashir resigned under pressure nearly three weeks later. But he had a telling line in his apology, saying that “the politics of vitriol and destruction is a miserable place to be and a miserable person to become.”

Now comes Melissa Harris-Perry and her MSNBC panel, mocking a Mitt Romney family photo because, amid a sea of white faces, Romney’s adopted black grandson was on his knee. This falls more in the category of racially insensitive jokes than personal attacks, but why shouldn’t the family be praised rather than ridiculed for the adoption? Instead a defenseless baby was made into a symbol of the GOP’s lack of diversity.

Harris-Perry apologized to the Romney family on Twitter and on MSNBC.com.

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