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Posts Tagged ‘Martin Bashir’

The 10 Biggest TV News Stories of 2013

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How to describe a year in which TV news had more turnovers than Pepperidge Farm? Business as usual.

The dramatic departures and arrivals of A-List talent weren’t the only big story of 2013, of course. Two new networks launched. Fox News made some major changes in its prime-time lineup. Serious health issues affected at least three anchors. And CBS’s venerable ‘Sunday Morning’ continued to kick ass on the Sabbath.

Herewith my choices for TV news’ Top 10, in no particular order:

Open mouth, insert foot.

Hosts Martin Bashir and Alec Baldwin both left MSNBC after making what could charitably be called offensive comments.

On his November 15 broadcast, Bashir suggested that someone should defecate in the mouth of ex-vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin because of remarks she had made about slavery. Instead, it was Bashir who was forced to eat doo-doo. He resigned Dec. 4.

Actor-activist Baldwin hit the bricks Nov. 26, two weeks after he was caught on video calling a paparazzi a ‘cocksucking fag.’ His weekly show, ‘Up Late,’ lasted exactly five episodes. Maybe replacing ‘Lockup’ was bad karma.

Lara’s theme.

Ace ’60 Minutes’ correspondent Lara Logan was forced to take a leave of absence after her October 27 piece on the Benghazi attack was discredited. Politico says she’ll return early next month. CBS isn’t talking.

A CBS internal inquiry labeled Logan’s report ‘deficient in several respects.’ Among them: Over a full year’s reporting, she and her team somehow missed the fact that her major source, security contractor Dylan Davies, was a liar. Oops.

In a dubious distinction, Logan’s story led to ‘60’ winning Poynter’s Error of the Year award. If you call that winning.

A pair of newbies.

While other networks endured layoffs, two new cable channels debuted — Al Jazeera America on August 20 and Fusion on October 28.

AJA hired hundreds of journalists and staff – including many from U.S. networks. Among them: CNN chief business correspondent Ali Velshi, its first big-name hire; CNN International’s Joie Chen; MSNBC exile David Shuster and NBC’s John Seigenthaler.

AJA, whose corporate parent is based in Qatar, boasts 12 domestic bureaus and three broadcast centers. It reaches about 48 million homes.

Fusion, a joint production of Disney-ABC and Univision, features news and pop-culture fare targeted at English-speaking millenials. Based outside of Miami, it represents Univision’s first major foray into English-language programming.

Would you like your anchors scrambled or poached?

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Alex Wagner Moving to 4pm on MSNBC

AW HeadshotFirst on TVNewser: Alex Wagner will be the new 4pmET host on MSNBC starting January 13, TVNewser has learned.

Wagner takes over the hour from Martin Bashir who resigned earlier this month following vile comments he made about Sarah Palin.

Wagner debuted as the host of “Now,” which airs at NoonET, in November, 2011. The show is a panel-format with political journalists and commentators as guests.

Before joining MSNBC, Wagner was a reporter at the Huffington Post covering politics and business. Wagner’s move to 4pmET opens up the noonET spot on MSNBC.  The network recently added Ronan Farrow to its lineup, who is set to debut in January at an as-yet-unannounced time.

Brian Stelter Makes ‘Reliable Sources’ Debut

StelterRS304Brian Stelter, who filled in a few times on “Reliable Sources” the last few months, made his debut as host of the CNN media criticism show this morning. Stelter covered this week’s revolving media door, President Obama‘s media criticism, and the death of Nelson Mandela.

Stelter opened with a panel on Martin Bashir‘s resignation and Sam Champion‘s move to The Weather Channel.

NPR media critic Eric Deggans criticized MSNBC for not suspending Bashir immediately for Bashir’s vile comments toward Sarah Palin, while The Washington Post’s Paul Farhi doubted Bashir’s resignation, suggesting MSNBC President Phil Griffin probably asked him to leave, and allowed Bashir to resign. American University professor Jane Hall said if Bashir didn’t leave, MSNBC would be in the uncomfortable position of looking less bothered by vile comments toward women than about Alec Baldwin‘s anti-gay slurs.

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Your Final Pick for MSNBC’s 4pm Host Is…

msnbc logo 300x197MSNBC‘s 4pmET time slot opened earlier this week after Martin Bashir resigned. So we put it to you: asking who you’d like to see land the hosting gig.

The overwhelming majority of you wanted someone outside of the options given. With 25% voting for “other.” Some of those “others” include Rush Limbaugh, Anthony Weiner, former President Bill Clinton, and one wrote in “a ceramic toad would be nice.” Another big “other” choice was Sarah Palin. Yesterday, Palin reiterated that she accepted Bashir’s apology and it’s time to move on from the remarks directed at her that cost Bashir his job.

Current substitute for the hour, Joy-Ann Reid, came in second with 18%, with MSNBC political analyst and former RNC Chair Michael Steele following a tick below at 17%.

“MSNBC Live” host Thomas Roberts comes in fourth at 13% with recent new-hire Ronan Farrow next at 12%.

MSNBC tells TVNewser they’ll have an announcement about a permanent replacement host in the coming weeks.

Sarah Palin on Martin Bashir Resignation: ‘Accept His Apology’ and ‘Move on’

sarah palin_304x200In the wake of Martin Bashir‘s resignation, Sarah Palin reiterated that she accepts his apology, saying it’s time to move.

“My role is to accept his apology, and be humble enough, accept it and move on,” Palin said on “Fox and Friends,” adding she hopes that “unprovoked attacks like that” don’t prevent people from jumping into the public arena.

Often a critic of the “lamestream media,” Palin praised those in the media who came to her defense.

“It was refreshing to see that many in the media did come out and say… look our standards have got to be higher than this, those with that platform, with the microphone, a camera in their face, they have to have some more responsibility taken.” (Watch after the jump).

Another recent casualty of MSNBC’s revolving door, Alec Baldwin, took to Twitter to praise Bashir.

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Your Vote For The New MSNBC 4pm Host Is…

msnbc logo 300x197MSNBC‘s 4pmET time slot opened yesterday after Martin Bashir resigned. So we put it to you: asking who you’d like to see land the hosting gig.

The poll is still open and right now an overwhelming majority of you want someone outside of the options given. With 23% voting for “other.” Some of those “others” include Rush Limbaugh, Anthony Weiner, and one wrote in “a ceramic toad would be nice.” Another big “other” choice is Sarah Palin. It was remarks directed at Palin that cost Bashir his job.

Current substitute for the hour, Joy-Ann Reid, is in second with 18%, with MSNBC political analyst and former RNC Chair Michael Steele coming in a tick below at 17%.

“MSNBC Live” host Thomas Roberts is in fourth at 14% with recent new-hire Ronan Farrow coming in next at 12%.

We’ll keep the poll open until 5pmET tomorrow night. So vote, if you haven’t already.

Who Should Be The Next MSNBC 4pm Host?

The revolving door swings again at MSNBC. Martin Bashir‘s resignation today is the second high-profile departure of a network host in the last week. Alec Baldwin‘s “Up Late” was pulled from MSNBC last Tuesday.

Now, MSNBC President Phil Griffin has a prime early-evening time slot to fill. It may be fortuitous since recent hire Ronan Farrow hasn’t been given a slot. But don’t rule out Joy-Ann Reid — who has been and will continue to host in Bashir’s spot. Or could it be someone currently off the radar. MSNBC tells TVNewser they’ll have an announcement about a permanent replacement host in the coming weeks.

Who would you like to see as the next 4pmET host?

The Scoreboard: Monday, December 2

25-54 demographic (Live +SD)

  • Total day: FNC: 279 | MSNBC: 149 | CNN: 102 | HLN: 99
  • Primetime: FNC: 302 | MSNBC: 176 | CNN: 128 | HLN: 98

4p: 5p: 6/6:30p: 7p: 8p: 9p: 10p: 11/11:30p: 12a:
FNC
Cavuto:

208

TheFive:

508

Baier:

330

Greta:

238

O’Reilly:

371

Megyn:

267

Hannity:

265

O’Reilly:

325

Megyn:

278

MSNBC
Bashir:

124

EdShow:

200

Sharpton:

225

Matthews:

249

Hayes:

182

Maddow:

188

O’Donnell:

158

Hayes:

135

Maddow:

175

CNN
Tapper:

167

Blitzer:

134

Blitz/Cross:

119/93

Burnett:

167

Cooper:

192

Morgan:

110

Cooper:

82

11th/ICYMI:

60/57

Morgan:

46

HLN
News:

68

WWYD:

46

Showbiz:

99

Jane:

103

Grace:

102

DrDrew:

76

WWYD:

116

Showbiz:

66

DrDrew:

87

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Martin Bashir Out at MSNBC

BashirBreaking: MSNBC host Martin Bashir is leaving the network.

Bashir hasn’t been on the air since Nov. 22. MSNBC said he was on a pre-planned vacation, but we’ve learned he resigned today. The departure follows comments he made about Sarah Palin on his Friday, Nov. 15 show.

Bashir called Palin a “dunce” and suggested she might be a candidate for the same treatment slaves received from a plantation owner named Thomas Thistewood: being urinated and defecated on.

After demands for an apology, he apologized, but remained on the air. As calls for a suspension grew louder, Bashir anchored the rest of the week before going on that vacation.

Bashir joined MSNBC in the summer of 2010, after six years with ABC News, part of that time as a host of “Nightline.”

More: Comments from Bashir and MSNBC president Phil Griffin after the jump…

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Sorry is Easy. In the Case of Martin Bashir, Suspension Seems to be the Hardest Word

Martin Bashir 304Judging strictly by precedent at MSNBC, if Martin Bashir had called Sarah Palin a ‘cocksucking fag,’ ‘right wing slut,’ ‘dick,’ ‘pimp,’ or ‘nappy headed ho,’ he would be on suspension, at the very least.

Instead, Bashir is a free man. All he said about Palin on Nov. 15 was that she should be forced to have someone defecate in her mouth and urinate in her eyes as punishment for her remarks on slavery.

What’s wrong with this picture? Plenty, if one considers MSNBC’s long history of Foot in Mouth disease. In every case, the commentator was either suspended or fired. In every case, the perps have been men, and in every case but one, the broadcast slurs have been aimed at women.

Ten days ago, actor Alec Baldwin was benched for two weeks after he was caught on video calling a paparazzi a ‘cocksucking fag.’ He may not return.

In 2011, Ed Schultz and Mark Halperin were both suspended — Schultz for labelling conservative commentator Laura Ingraham a ‘right wing slut,’ and Halperin for describing President Obama as a ‘dick.’ (Sidebar: If it had been Nixon, Halperin would have been technically correct.)

In ’08, David Shuster served two weeks for saying that Chelsea Clinton was being pimped out to support her mother’s campaign. And in ’07, Don Imus’ description of the Rutgers women’s basketball team as ‘nappy headed hos’ got him fired.

Like all his predecessors, Bashir apologized – the latest to join the celebrity culture of contrition. In a statement Friday, MSNBC said Bashir had also apologized to the Palin family, that he’s “committed to elevating the discourse” and that the network was handling the matter internally.

Still, many critics argue that Bashir deserves harsher punishment.

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